In this article-
What are Initiatives?
Initiatives are high-level, strategic efforts or large-scale working items that relate to multiple epics across multiple teams and workspaces. These efforts are typically long-term and can take multiple releases to accomplish.
The Benefits of using Initiatives
Initiatives are valuable for product managers because they provide a high-level view of strategic goals and help to prioritize work. By tracking requirements and connecting every product decision to a strategic initiative, product managers can create a clear roadmap that aligns with the company's overall goals.
This helps to ensure that the right work is being done at the right time, and that teams are focused on tasks that support the company's larger objectives.
Initiatives also help to keep everyone in the company aligned on the strategic goals. By visualizing initiatives in roadmaps and other views, product managers can ensure that everyone understands the company's overall strategy and how their work fits into it. This can help to improve communication and collaboration within the organization.
Initiatives in Craft.io Product Portfolio Management
The following scheme visualizes where and how Initiatives fit into Craft.io’s data model-
Roles and permissions
In the context of Craft.io's Product Portfolio Management, initiatives can be created and managed in the Portfolio with the following roles: owner, admin, and editor.
Statuses and Workflow
Due to the nature of Initiatives as a unique type of work item that represents a larger scale of work, Initiatives have their own status workflow, which can be set on the Portfolio settings.
These statuses can also be visualized in roadmaps and other views to keep everyone in the company aligned on the current status of work.
Initiatives Importance field
Initiatives also have their own set of importance values, including game changer, improvement, and maintenance. These can also be customized.
Initiatives time range
The default time range of an Initiative is three months, but it can be customized to meet your specific requirements.
Initiatives Portfolio Fields
Portfolio fields are custom fields on the Portfolio level, that can be added to any item type in the portfolio. These fields are useful for providing additional information and context to portfolio items.
Portfolio fields can be used for information that is intended for management, rather than for everyone to see, such as budget, risk and resources. They can also be propagated down to the connected workspaces for everyone to see.
By adding Portfolio fields to Initiatives, apart from providing more details about them, one can use the fields to slice and dice the views, filter and analyze the data in different ways. This can help with presenting Initiatives and making data-driven decisions.
Initiatives can be prioritized like other item types. To optimize the prioritization process of Initiatives, it’s recommended to add portfolio fields of different types to your prioritization scheme. For example, prioritize Initiatives based on their potential impact on revenue.
By adding these fields to your methodology, you can prioritize Initiatives according to their strategic importance and make sure that the right work is being done at the right time.
Creating Initiative Roadmaps and Views
Creating Initiative roadmaps in Craft.io allows Product Managers to create high-level strategic plans and keep the entire company aligned on the strategic goals. By providing a clear and visual representation of the plan, Initiative roadmaps make it easier to communicate the overall strategy.
To create various Initiative views in your Portfolio, select the "Initiative" hierarchy level.
Connecting Epics to Initiatives
Initiatives are a cross-workspace effort that can be broken down into multiple epics worked by multiple teams. Breaking Initiatives into epics is crucial for ensuring that high-level strategic plans are translated into specific, actionable work items. Team members become more aware of the tasks that need to be completed in order to achieve the overall goal when Initiatives are broken down into smaller, more manageable chunks.
To assign epics to Initiatives in Portfolio Management, you can either use bulk actions or drag & drop functionality. This allows you to quickly and easily connect multiple epics to an Initiative at once. Alternatively, you can use the Initiative field in the epic’s item properties panel for an individual assignment.
Initiatives in Workspaces
Initiatives are propagated to workspaces associated with Portfolio. By creating and assigning epics to Initiatives within the workspace, you can connect relevant epics and organize them according to your strategic goals. Grouping, filtering, and sorting can be used to view and organize Initiatives in various views.
To ensure that the epics are aligned with the Initiative's goals, you can open the Initiative panel to view its description and validate that the connection is correct.