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Product roadmap software is a tool that product developers and managers use to create a detailed plan of tasks in every stage of the product's lifecycle. It lets you document information about a product's strategy, features, releases, enhancements, and user feedback.
The software helps you visualise goals, track requirements, and manage resources during the product development process. It also offers users a shared workspace to discuss ideas, give suggestions, and collaborate on project execution.
The benefits of product roadmap software
The software helps product developers and managers set goals and requirements for the team, and get a bird's-eye view of the product's lifecycle. It offers the following benefits:
- Communicate product strategy and progress to stakeholders: The solution provides a centralised space for information sharing, getting all teams on the same page. You can track the progress of each project element to know the timelines and updates. Select the information to visualise in the timeline and get a customised, bird's-eye view of projects.
- Seek cross-functional inputs: Product roadmap software allows teams to ideate and collaborate in shared spaces using features such as commenting and tagging. This improves team communication and allows members to seek feedback from each other.
- Determine total effort and resource investments: The solution gives you complete visibility on the planned developments for a product. This can help you better estimate the effort and investment required to achieve the product vision.
- Streamline product development and backlog: The software helps you streamline product development and improvements. By letting you document ideas and suggestions, it ensures that you don't forget anything. This also makes it easier for you to revisit developments and clear any task backlog.
Typical features of product roadmap software
- Collaboration: Share information with team members in real time and collaborate on projects.
- Requirement management: Create, track, and manage your business requirements throughout the product's lifecycle.
- Prioritisation: Manage tasks by assigning a priority level to each task.
- Milestone tracking: Set and manage goals as well as the key milestones. Also, closely track the progress of each goal.
- Reporting: Track the progress of tasks and pertinent metrics for various processes.
- Visualisation: View the plans and processes in a timeline format.
- Guest access: Use access control to manage what guests can view and who they can interact with.
Considerations when purchasing product roadmap software
- Distinguish core roadmapping features from common product management ones: While some solutions specialise in product roadmapping, others focus on project management and offer product roadmapping as an integration or advanced feature. Determine your needs first—if your use cases are about product development, choose product roadmap software. But if your use cases align with product or project management, opt for project management software.
- Explore the software functionality extensively: Not all vendors will offer features such as commenting, file management, goal setting, and group calendars. Therefore, compare different solutions to check whether the vendor offers all the features you need. The software you purchase should also support your team's working styles.
- Ask about third-party integrations: Ask vendors whether the solution can integrate with the third-party applications you use. This is important to ensure seamless data transfer, so that you don't have to do it manually. It is also important to ensure that information in product roadmap software and related project management or collaboration software is in sync.
- Check security and storage: Before choosing a solution, check where your data will be stored as well as the measures to ensure secure storage and transfer. After all, your product-related plans and strategies should remain confidential. So, thoroughly vet the vendor's certifications, compliance standards, and the security policy.
Relevant product roadmap software trends
- More businesses shifting to cloud-based software: Roadmunk, ProductPlan, Cardboard, Casual PM, and ProductBoard are only a few names on the growing list of providers offering a cloud-based solution. Based on Gartner research, businesses are increasingly adopting cloud-first strategies, which is being emulated by product roadmap software vendors and developers.
- Providers incorporating mobile phone compatibility: Product roadmap software providers are incorporating mobile compatibility to help users access and share information while on-the-go. Solutions, such as HelloFocus, ZohoSprint, and Aha!, have mobile apps for both Android and iOS.