Roadmap view mode
There are four data visualization methods in Targetprocess 3: Board view, Detailed view, List view, and Roadmap view. Once you have configured your view, you can quickly switch between all these modes to choose the most suitable one.
The main idea of the Roadmap is to present cards based on planned dates, actual start/end dates, and forecasts to help track work over time. Roadmap is a powerful tool for roadmapping, portfolio management, release and iteration planning, daily planning, tracking projects, teams, and people.
There are two main elements in the roadmap mode: details view and time navigator (see screenshot below). Every swim lane in the details view has a backlog. The backlog contains entities that are not planned and are have not been started.
Being able to display cards on a Roadmap gives you the ability to visualize three important time frames to see how work is progressing:
- Planned Time
- Actual Cycle Time
- Forecasted Time
A Closer Look at Cards Visualization
Below is a screenshot of a work item that is in progress and shows the already mentioned time frames for planned, actual, and forecasted time.
- Planned dates are shown with the dotted outline
- Actual start and end dates are shown with solid background
- Forecasted time is shown with semi-transparent background
Starting from left to right, first we see planned time, represented by the dotted outline. It is possible to see just this dotted outline and without seeing anything else. This happens when you have a planned work item, but no one has started to work on it until now. Every work item and most other entity types in Targetprocess can have a planned start and end date. You have to make sure that these dates are set in the card's detailed view (see screenshot below) in order to have the dotted outline show up on the roadmap.
At least one of these fields needs to be populated. If the planned end date has not been entered, while planned start date has, Targetprocess assumes the work item has an infinite duration (so it’s not planned to end anytime). If the start date is not entered, but end date is, it will show the work item as though it was started at the beginning of time.
To also show the planned timeframe for completed cards, you will need to go to the roadmap pane of the Roadmap view and enable the “Planned for Done” setting:
Here you can also enable forecasting.
Actual Cycle Time
The next time frame we can see in the screenshot is the actual cycle time, represented by a solid white rectangular. It shows you when someone began to work on this item and when work was halted. As the work item below is still in progress, the actual cycle time frame lasts till the green vertical line, that indicating today's date. The start point is indicated by the left edge of the solid white rectangular (blue vertical line in this example - other card types have different color).
If users are displayed as cards, start date indicates when this user was created and end date is always the current day.
On the right of the vertical green line you see the forecasted time, represented by a semi-transparent rectangular (marked with the orange frame in the image above). It shows you when you can expect the work item to enter its final state.
The forecast calculation is currently based on linear extrapolation using two points: start date and current date. You're welcome to find detailed description of Forecasts calculation in the dedicated article.
Scrolling through Time
The Time Scroller is the fastest way to navigate through your work in matter of time. The whole period of time displayed in the Time Scroller is selected via the date picker in the header of the view:
The visual part of this period of time, which is currently displayed in the details section of the roadmap view, is indicated by the highlighted box within the Time Scroller (see screenshot below).
To scroll through time you just need to manipulate this box by performing one of the following actions:
- To move back or forth in time (while keeping the current length of the displayed time frame), you have to drag and drop the whole box, by clicking anywhere inside the box and moving it to the left or right. Moving the box to the left means going back in time, moving it to the right means going forth in time.
- To change the scale of the displayed time frame, you need to grab the left or right edge of the highlighted box and move it to the left or right. The size of the box will adjust and the details area of the roadmap view will update accordingly to show the shorter/longer timeframe.
Besides navigation the Time Scroller provides some more features. The colorful bar charts are indicators for the density of the entity types, that are currently represented on the view. This gives you the following possibilities:
- Compare density of cards on whole roadmap, e.g. to answer the following questions:
- Are there more cards on 29th of June or on 30th of March?
- Every time I navigate using the scrolling I need to know how many cards I’ll see.
- Compare density of different types of cards on a day, e.g. to answer the following questions:
- Distribution of how much bugs and User Stories I’ll see on roadmap for this day?
- Compare count of some entity type on the period of time, e.g. to answer the following questions:
- Is it more bugs on 29th of June or 30th of May?
- Is the count of User Stories growing?
Refreshing the Time Scroller
At the moment the Time Scroller doesn’t support automatic updates, this is, you will have to refresh it manually from time to time, for example when you moved some cards in the roadmap view via drag and drop.
Swimlanes and Roadmaps
It is possible to display horizontal lanes, so called swimlanes, on the Roadmap view. Swimlanes can be configured in the setup panel of the view, as usual. The screenshot below shows a roadmap view with features as cards and projects as swimlanes.
The time frame from Planned Start to Planned End is shown on a Roadmap with a lighter shade of grey. This makes it easier to see if a planned start for a work item card matches the start of a Release (as in the screen above).
It is possible to configure roadmap with vertical lanes such as Week, Month, Quarter, Half-Year, Year and Iteration, Release, Team Iteration. Select them as columns under view setup. Selected period will appear over date scale and will be divided using grey dotted gridlines.
Group data by Release, Iteration or Team Iteration
Let's create Roadmap that will represent how User Stories are planned and delivered by Iterations.
- Open Roadmap setup.
- Select Iteration as columns.
- Select User Story as cards.
- Check that period set for Roadmap is correct. Update it if necessary.
- As a result you'll see User Stories on a timeline groupped visually by Iterations:
- Iterations are located on timescale based on their Start and End dates.
- If you observe plans for more than 1 team and Iterations for different teams occur on the same cadence then they'll be united into single column. Counter located next to column name will indicate how many additional Iterations are there:
- Click on Iteration name to see all other iterations available for these dates and navigate to any of them by clicking their names:
When dates of Releases/Iterations are not equal but overlapped they'll be united into single column as well. The earliest Release/Iteration name will be displayed as column name. All others will be hidden under popup shown above.
Group data by Week numbers, Months, Quarters, Halves and Years
You may want to plan your work based on calendar periods. In this case go to View setup, select Week, Month, Quarter, Half-Year or Year as grouping option.
Like, if you plan work by weeks, then you'll see Week numbers on the time scale divided with grey dotted lines:
Drag-n-Drop in Roadmaps
Change Planned dates
You can update Planned Start Date and Planned End Date in a roadmap with drag-n-drop:
- Drag the left card's border to update Planned Start Date
- Drag the right card's border to update Planned End Date
- Drag the whole card to update both the dates (duration won’t change)
Cards can be prioritized by drag-n-drop, respecting settings in Prioritize tab.
In timeline area you can move and prioritize only panned cards.
Drag-n-drop from Backlog to Roadmap
You can move cards from Backlog to Roadmap by drag-n-drop. When a card is moved to a Roadmap this way, the initial Planned Start and End dates are set automatically.
The entity takes about 30% of the Roadmap’s length if no columns were selected.
When Quarter, Release or other is selected as column then size of a card will be set equal to column's width:
Drag-n-drop between columns
When you move cards in Roadmaps configured with Release/Iterations in columns then appropriate Release/Iteration will be assigned to cards the same way as it works in Board view:
If card can’t be assigned to a planning item then we just set planned dates for a card without assignment to Release/Iteration.
Drag-n-drop between rows
You can also use drag-n-drop in a roadmap to change the card’s priority or other property selected in row. For that, a view for Features with Priority set as a lane is required, and the priority can be changed by dragging a planned card from one lane to another:
Dates shown in a tooltip when dragging a card
New Planned Start and End dates are shown in a tooltip while the card is dragged; it’s easier to remember the dates this way.
It is not possible to hide Backlog column on Roadmap views.
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