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Roadmap

What is a roadmap?

Roadmap Definition - A roadmap is a high-level strategic overview of a significant business initiative. Roadmaps are typically used to manage the development of a new product or the execution of a company-wide project.

Product managers and project managers both rely on roadmaps to give teams a clear strategic overview, helping keep everyone aligned.

However, product roadmaps and project roadmaps differ sharply in the way they treat timelines and deadlines. 

A product roadmap can have projects embedded within it, but each project will have a clear timeline with agreed start and end dates. 

A product roadmap timeline is much more dynamic and more changeable, allowing for shifts or updates as priorities change.

What do roadmaps do? 

Roadmaps act as a single reference point to ensure everyone on a team shares the same understanding of the goals driving an initiative. 

Having a central overview everyone can reference makes it easier to alter or update the priority of tasks and milestones when changes to an initiative are required. 

What are the benefits of having a roadmap?

Roadmaps help keep team members on the same page in terms of an initiative’s scope, objectives, and timeline. They also help those in charge communicate objectives and share status updates quickly.  

What are the drawbacks of having a roadmap?

  • If roadmaps aren’t updated frequently, initiatives can veer off-course, and unplanned dependencies cause projects to derail.

  • Roadmaps become counter-productive if they aren’t used as a living working document. That’s why it’s so important to use a dedicated roadmapping tool that makes it simple and intuitive to share with all stakeholders in real-time.

Q&A

Question: When does a roadmap become a queue?
Answer: A roadmap becomes a queue when the product team plans their roadmap using multiple batches of work during a specific period of time. If a certain initiative doesn’t get done during the first batch, it will take it longer to get done considering the size and timeframe of the next batch of work. A roadmap queue is inefficient and affects the speed of new features getting added to the roadmap.
Question: What is a strategic roadmap?
Answer: A strategic roadmap is a time-based document of your company’s current strategy, goals, and strategic plans.

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