From idea to dev - workflow

Jeanette Bonifaz February 20, 2024

Hi,

We are trying to track every step from product idea to development. We want to come up with a new workflow in JIRA to manage (1) the discovery process and (2) the requirements process leading into development. This needs to happen all under one Project. By doing this, we want to tackle the challenges of lack of clarity around feedback, questions, and difficulties in tracking approvals and statuses.

This is an initial draft of the steps we need. Looking for any advise on how to approach this. Can I incorporate this many steps (statuses) in one board? Any best practices? The process of refining the requirements and having approvals are both key. We do not have plans to start using Jira Product Discovery, so it needs to be in Jira Software.

 

  • Idea Proposed 
    • Needs more information (Assign back)
    • If enough information is provided, proceed to CEO approval (assign to CEO)
  • CEO - idea decision
    • Idea Approved (transition to backlog)
    • Needs more information (assign back to PM)
    • Not now (Move to Not Now)
  • Backlog 
    • Transition to Develop Product Requirements when ready to continue
  • Develop Product Requirements
    • Product Reqs ready - Assign to VP Product
  • Requirements – VP Product Approval
    • Requirements Approved (Assign to Dev Lead)
    • Need more work (Assign back to PM)
  • Dev Lead Approval
    • Requirements Approved (Assign to CEO)
    • Need more work (Assign to PM)
  • CEO Requirements Approval 
    • Ready for development (Assign to Lead Dev)
  • Development Ready
    • Assign to Developer
  • Development Active
    • Clarifications (Assign to PM)
    • Development complete 
  • Development Complete

3 answers

1 accepted

1 vote
Answer accepted
Mark Segall
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
February 20, 2024

Hi @Jeanette Bonifaz and welcome to the community!

I'm assuming that this is the proposed process for an Epic?  It is possible to do something like this, but I would recommend splitting out the different phase gates into different boards.  For example:

  • Ideation and approval (Kanban Board): This would capture everything through CEO Requirements Approval and would have a filter like this:
    • Project = YOURPROJECT AND type = Epic AND status NOT IN ("Development Ready", "Development Active", "Development Complete")
  • Development (Scrum Board): This would be where the dev teams actually work and have a board filter like this:
    • Project = YOURPROJECT AND (type = Epic AND status IN ("Development Ready", "Development Active", "Development Complete") OR type != Epic)

There are several reasons behind this:

  1. You'll need a specific Kanban Board for Epics if you wish to track them at that granularity. 
  2. Even if your teams work in a Kanban, it's recommended that you split the ideation from the development because the extra Epic statuses are just noise to them.

Ultimately, you want to make Jira as easy as possible on your dev teams and then figure out how you want to satisfy the management requirements.

Jeanette Bonifaz February 20, 2024

Thank you Mark! This is very useful. And yes, this is indeed for Epics. 

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Jeanette Bonifaz February 21, 2024

Hi there! I have a follow up question. What about adding a custom field for approvals in the steps that are needed? 

I saw the link below for Jira Service Management. Is it possible to do something similar in Jira Software?

https://confluence.atlassian.com/servicemanagementserver/5-add-approvals-to-your-workflow-1082527843.html

Mark Segall
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
February 21, 2024

Unfortunately, the native approval feature is tied to JSM licensing.  However, there are ways to hack it in Jira Software.  What you'll need:

  1. Mechanism to capture approver(s):  If it's always the same people, I'd recommend a group.  If it varies from issue to issue, you could consider a custom field
  2. Workflow Condition: On your transition that you want to simulate an approval, you add a condition based upon what you've determined on step 1.  This will simulate an approval because only those individuals covered by the condition will have the ability to transition the issue to the next status.
  3. Automation Rule: You can use automation to send a notification when the issue transitions to the status signifying approval is needed.
0 votes
Troy Moore February 20, 2024

I recommend using Jira Product Discovery otherwise known as 'JPD' (a different Atlassian Product) to seamlessly facilitate ideation to development. I've seen a lot of success implementing JPD and using those product line items in JPD to facilitate discovery, prioritization and other critical product-type conversations. The great part about JPD is that it allows you to track deliverable iterative development progress that is happening concurrently within Jira Software. It easily integrates with Jira Software and allows a separation of configuration that promotes the commonsense separation of duties between Product Owners and Development resources and other stakeholders.

If you'd like to talk about this idea, I'd be happy to get on a video chat. 

Jeanette Bonifaz February 20, 2024

Hi Troy, Thanks for the suggestion. I did look extensively into JPD, and it definitely would me the best way to go long term. However, we have a small Product team and we do not have such a high quantity of ideas that I think would warrant, right now at least, using JPD. Also, the instructions I received are that this needs to be in one Project in Jira and we are not currently planning on using JDP. However, I will include this as a proposal for the decisionmakers to consider.

Troy Moore February 20, 2024

I've really enjoyed JPD.

Otherwise, the other suggestions here are similar to my recommendation. You'd want to setup a workflow first that specifies a status of 'pre-dev'. Those 'pre-dev' statuses may contain required custom fields like 'CEO approval' and CEO approval date' or any of the other items you called out. The display of those custom fields can be managed in 'Field Configuration' and 'Screens' within your Jira Settings.  From there you can create a new board under your single project. Once that new board is created, you can adjust the board filter to only bring in those issues within the 'pre-dev' status and your initial 'dev' board can be filtered to either include or exclude 'pre-dev' statuses depending on your preference. 

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Jack Brickey
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
February 20, 2024

Personally I would create two different boards: product management and development. When an issue created within the product management team is approved then they would create an issue in the development environment and link the two issues. You could either mark the product issue as complete or leave it in some Awaiting development status. This would allow the product team and development team to operate independently of each other. I would probably create a specific issue type (Idea) for the product team to keep that separate and leave story to the development team. The two teams could operate within the same project or separate projects, if desired.

Jack Brickey
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
February 20, 2024

Also, the product team would likely operate within a kanban model, whereas the development team might tend toward a scrum model..

Jeanette Bonifaz February 20, 2024

Thanks, Jack! Yes, this is very likely what we will end up doing. Thanks for the suggestion.

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