Wednesday, January 27, 2010

ScrumPad 2010 Roadmap- reimagining the future

We have started this year working on a new look for ScrumPad. It has kept us busy for the most part this month. This new look is our first step towards our overall vision of "reimagining the future" theme that we set for us in 2010. Although the "new look" was a result of the feedback from our current users and our growing understanding of usability and usefulness for a PM tool, it is an appropriate segue to a bigger question- "How would we design ScrumPad, if we started from scratch today?"

In exploring answers to this question, we have identified a few initiatives that we are already excited about. I am sure you will be too. Some of these initiatives are at a high-level and missing specifics. We are intentionally vague about the specifics, because we would like to involve our users help us pull these specifics out in the light. 

Kill features that are not used, expand and tweak those that are used more. In the spirit of lean startup, we plan to remove features that are not used by our users. We see these as distract ors from both developer and user perspectives. Instead, we want to spend our effort on features that made our users choose ScrumPad over our competitors' and make them even more useful. 

80% features will be a result of user pull, 20% push from us. The idea behind this "pull vs push" is that we plan to  put our users in the driving seat when it comes to what new features to add. To streamline our interaction with our users, we have chosen Getsatisfaction. However, we will still push some experimental features to our users. These will things that nobody has tried. We will not be afraid of testing and 

Integration. We plan to focus on building plugins for popular IDEs (e.g., Eclipse, Visual Studio, and NetBeans). Our goal is to allow developers interact with ScrumPad without leaving their core working environment and hence reduce the time spent on ScrumPad. We plan to roll-out support for one IDE every quarter starting with Eclipse. We also want to integrate with services like getsatisfaction and uservoice as well as help-desks like ZenDesk to allow users drive backlog.

API. We started the work on publishing some of the functionalities as APIs in last year. The goal is to allow users to build their own integration or offline reports. The initial set of APIs is currently in private beta. Expect to see these APIs generally available by the end of first quarter. 

ScrumPad Community. We do not see ScrumPad just as another PM tool, but much more than that. We see it as a platform for "Agile Project Ecosystem." We discussed this in one of our previous blogs. We have released a Minimal Viable Product (MVP, a leanstartup term) early this year. It is in private alpha. Expect to see more on this front.
Core functionality. We would like to focus on making product (backlog) management as easy as possible. So, we will be experimenting with different features to make this a reality.

Usability. Our effort on usability will not stop with the roll-out of the new UI in a few days. It is an ongoing journey for us. We plan to have a maniacal focus on usability throughout 2010. We want to get to a point where it feels "just right."

We will be doing all these in small increments, tweaks, and turns. All fun. At the end, we want to move from "product market fit" to "transition to growth." We promise to keep you guys updated about our roadmap with the specifics as they unfold.