An Insider’s Look into Wizeline’s Roadmap Planning

Product Management

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It has been an exciting first week here at Wizeline. Since launching on Wednesday, we’ve received lots of interest from a ton of great companies across various sectors, including healthcare, B2B software and consumer products.

Read the news via TechCrunch

So, what’s next? Like any software company, we’re continually planning sprints, gathering requirements, and deploying. We’re somewhat unique, however, in that we’re able to use the very products we’re building to help improve our own processes. Case in point: we’re actively using the Wizeline platform to decide what to build next.

To give you an idea of how this works, here are a few results from a product prioritization survey we completed a few weeks ago.

wizeline-product-prioritization-survey

In this example, we’re comparing how two of our team members ranked a set of features and product ideas. These results could also be filtered by team, degree of uncertainty or other team members. For this example, however, I wanted to pit our CEO/founder (Bismarck) against our head of engineering (Vidal).

For the most part, the two see eye to eye. They agree strongly that adding access for non-Google accounts is the #1 priority. They also both agree that making updates to Wizeline’s authentication process should be #2, though there was less consensus on this item across the broader team. Two other items — some self-serve features and adding multiple billing profiles — were included on both Vidal’s and Bismarck’s Top 5, but each ranked the items differently.

The two disagreed just once: Adding “text feedback in surveys” vs. “A more performant system.” Given the long list of competing features that were included in the original survey, this level of consensus is pretty remarkable — even between just two people. Clearly these guys were separated at birth…

In all seriousness, here are a few last thoughts on how we’ve used Wizeline to improve our roadmap planning and product decision-making process.

  • Talk it out. Wizelinze’s ranking algorithms do a lot of work, and the app visualizes the results, but we can’t make the decision for you. We like the following steps: (1) do a standup to discuss the results and adjust the position of the wizeline, (2) publish the roadmap for the entire organization.
  • The mobile surveys are actually really useful. We wanted Wizeline customers to be able to quickly gather input from their teams, regardless of where they were or what they were doing. So, we optimized the prioritization surveys for mobile. Honestly, though, we didn’t expect to be using the feature this much — it saves a huge amount of time and focus.
  • Transparent decisions are happy decisions. Roadmap planning is hard, especially at large organizations. And nothing hurts morale more than closed-room product decisions among management. Rules for the road: take a big tent approach, be transparent and make clear that a decision will be made.

That’s it for now. Stay tuned for more updates — and, if you’re a Wizeline customer, please let us know how you’re using the platform. We’d love to hear about your experiences.

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Peter Moore Posted by Peter Moore on Saturday, April 5, 2014.

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Sep 25, 2017

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