Our upcoming release (v.3.10.2) will contain a complete redesign of the projects-teams selector. To reduce complexity, we've made the selector a part of views (rather than a global setting found on the top bar). It will now be clear if a view is displaying data from the default project-teams selection made by the owner of the view, or data from the projects and teams selected by you.
We made these changes to solve two main issues. The first is that data in views would unexpectedly change because of unintended projects-teams selections. This happened when you navigated through views with and without predefined selections by the view owners. It was sometimes unclear why certain projects and teams were displayed in certain views.
The second issue would occur when users collaborated on views. It was often unclear for users that they were seeing different data than their teammates because they had set a different selection of projects and teams. To fix this, we've made the projects-teams selector as straightforward as we can. You will now always know what data you're looking at on the view and why.
By default, a view will show the selection set by the view owner in View Setup.
You can still make a view display data from any projects and teams that you need to see. When you modify the set of projects and teams shown on the view, the selector will be highlighted.
These changes are applied only for you; other users will still see the view with the predefined projects and teams selected by the view's owner.
Once you set projects and teams for a view, your selection will be saved for that view. You can easily revert back to the predefined selection by clicking the revert button.
If the view's owner hasn't set a projects-teams selection for the view, then the revert action will not work because there is nothing to revert to.
For more information, visit the Project and Teams Selector article in our User Guide.
We have made some huge changes in our prioritization and planning process this year. In a nutshell, we have switched to open allocation. Here is the story.
Old way: boards, feature ranking, top-down approach
During the last several years we used to have a Product Board. This was a committee that focused on annual product plans. It consisted of up to a dozen people with various roles from sales to developers. We discussed our product strategy and set high-level goals (like "increase the market share at the enterprise market"). We created a ranking model that we used to prioritize features and create roadmaps:
It kinda worked, but at some point I understood that somehow we pushed more and more features into Targetprocess, making it even more complex and heavy. Many people inside the company were not happy with this direction and they did not believe in it. Large customers demanded complex features like more flexible teams management, people allocation, an advanced QA area, etc. These are all good features, but we, as a company, somehow lost the feeling of end-user experience. Some simple things like search, navigation, performance, and simplicity were buried under fancy new features. This year, we put an end to that approach.
We want to create a tool that is pleasant to use. A tool that boosts your productivity and is almost invisible. A tool that saves your time. To achieve this goal, we have to go back to the basics. We should fix and polish what we have in Targetprocess already (and we have a lot) and then move forward with care to create new modules and explore new possibilities.
We have disbanded the Product Board, removed feature prioritization, done away with the top-down approach to people/team allocation, and replaced it with a few quite simple rules.
New way: Product Owner, Initiatives, and Sources
The Product Owner sets a very high level strategic theme for the next 1-2 years. Our current theme is very simple to grasp:
Basically, we want to do anything that reduces complexity, improves performance, simplifies basic scenarios like finding information, and fixes your pain points in our product.
This does not mean that we will not add new features. For example, the current email notification mechanism is really outdated, so we are going to replace it and implement in-app notifications. But, most likely, we will not add new major modules into Targetprocess in the near future. Again, we are focusing on existing users and their complaints.
Our people have virtually full freedom to start an Initiative that relates to the strategic theme. An Initiative is a project that has start/end dates, a defined scope and a defined team. It can be as short as 2 weeks with a single person in the team or as large as 3 months with 6-8 people in a team.
There are just three simple rules:
- Any person can start an Initiative. The Initiative should be approved by the Product Owner and the Technical Owner (we plan to use this approval mechanism for some time in order to check how the new approach goes). The Initiative should have a deadline defined by the Team.
- Any person can join any Initiative.
- Any person can leave an Initiative at any time.
Sources and Helpers
A Source is the person who started the Initiative. He or she assembles the team, defines the main problem the Initiatives aims to solve, and is fully responsible for the Initiative's success. The Source can make all final functional decisions, technical decisions, etc. (Remember, Helpers are free to leave the Initiative at any time, so there is a mechanism to control poor leadership).
A Helper is a person who joins an Initiative and is committed to help complete it by the agreed deadline. He or she should focus on the Initiative and make it happen.
The Initiative deadline day is pretty significant. Two things should happen on the deadline day:
- The Source makes a company-wide demo. They show the results to the whole company and explain what the team has accomplished.
- The Initiative should be live on production.
As you see, freedom meets responsibility here. People are free to start Initiatives and work on almost anything, but they have to meet their deadlines and deliver the defined scope. This creates significant peer pressure, since you don't want to show bad results during the demo.
This process was started in July. We still have a few teams finalizing old features, but the majority of developers are working in the Initiatives mode now. Here's a screenshot of the Initiatives currently in progress:
The Initiatives in the Backlog are just markers; some of them will not go into development, and there is no priority here. Next is the Initiatives Kanban Board:
You may ask, how do we define what is most important? The answer is: it does not matter. If we have a real pain from customers, and we have a few people that really want to solve this problem — it will be solved. Nobody can dictate a roadmap, nobody can set priorities, even the Product Owner. The Product Owner can start their own Initiatives (if they can get enough Helpers) or decline some Initiatives (if it takes tooooo long or doesn't fit the strategic theme).
As a result, we don't have roadmaps at all. We don't discuss priorities. And we can't provide answers to your questions like "when will you have a better Git integration". We can only make promises about things already started (you can see some of them above). All the people inside our company care about making our customers happy with the product, and now they have been enabled with real power to react faster and help you.
We can also promise that Targetprocess will become easier, faster, and more useful with every new release.
Beta of our new Visual Report Editor
On-Demand users will be able to switch to the beautiful beta of our new Visual Report Editor from Report Settings.
With this editor, you will have a lot of useful and easy options:
- You can drag-n-drop fields in reports to edit them and explore your data
- Aggregate fields, and make title and sorting changes with one click
- Important milestones and threshold lines can be added from field annotations
- Browse and edit chart data with the built-in visual editor
- Easy custom calculations via a formulas editor with full autocomplete
Read more at this dedicated release post for the new Report Editor
Batch Actions: Text, Number custom fields, batch change Effort, link Relations
In v.3.10.1 you can reset or set new efforts for a group of selected cards. Only roles, who are common for all selected cards, are available in a batch action panel. Here you can set a new effort number or reset it to zero. If you see a certain number in the Effort field, it means that all cards in the selection have the same effort set. The 'Set new' placeholder means there are different Effort value sets in different cards (if the selection is for a given role).
You will also be able to batch attach any Targetprocess entity to a group of cards as a Relation.
We've also added support for two more types of Custom Fields (in addition to drop-down lists) in the Batch Actions panel: Text and Number. We're now working on Date, Checkbox and Multiple Selection Custom Fields support.
Somehow, the Clone action was missing from Dashboards. We fixed this inequity - you will now be able to make a copy of any Dashboard.
- Fixed Custom Field Constraints mashup to support custom teams workflow states
- Fixed '0' drop-down list value wich couldn't be set properly
- Fixed 'Share report' option
- Fixed ban on adding users if their email is the same as a deleted user had
- Screen Capture Extension: login issue fixed
- Fixed problem with Copy to project / Convert not working if there is a deleted user assigned to a card or its child entity
- *.m4a attachments now download correctly
- Fixed Dark skin for TV to show view name properly
- The *.Count().* DSL filter supports more complex predicates. Example: 'UserStories.Count(Feature.Name.Contains('Web') and Effort > 0) > 5'
- Added the option to open URLs with the Targetprocess site domain from Custom fields in a current window
We are happy to announce the beta release of our new Visual Report Editor for all On-Demand accounts (with the exception of private clouds, for now).
You may find the following features to be useful:
- Editing reports and visually exploring your data can now be done simply with interactive fields and drag-n-drop
- Aggregate fields, and make title and sorting changes with one click
- Important milestones and threshold lines can be added using field annotations
- Browse and filter chart data using the built-in visual editor UI
- Custom calculations can be done easilly via a formulas editor with full autocomplete. This will bring your creation of complex calculations to the next level
- Low-level data details are available within the tooltip data reveal extension
Here's how you can try out the new Report Editor:
We will really appreciate your feedback on this beta release of our new editor. What do you like about it? What could be improved? Let us know what you think at email@example.com