We’ve got some super exciting news and hopefully a brand-new feedback management system that’ll prove to be useful for your product team! With our mission being ‘Enabling product teams to build lovable products sprint by sprint’, we took a step back and reflected on what other than user story mapping could help them do that. We must admit… that was no easy ride, but eventually we came up with the StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management Module to give you a tool to track, sort, organize, build on and validate product feedback. How will StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management make your product more lovable? Let’s dive right in.
Influx of features requests has been proven as a common cause of PO headache
If you’re a Product Owner or if you know one, you’re probably familiar with how overwhelming it can get to be constantly bombarded with feedback and having to keep a metal record of all ideas. I mean, we all know that Captain Products have some remarkable superpowers, but they also need cool technologies (and cool looks) to save the world.
This is where our idea comes into the picture. We designed a feedback management system that helps product teams to collect all product insights into a single repository so that no great ideas get lost. What’s more the system also allows them to elaborate on user insights, group them into feature ideas, collaborate on those ideas and validate them on a public roadmap.
Why do you need a feedback management system?
- Not to loose any great ideas.
- To be able to close the feedback loop and follow up on ideas.
- To build on valuable ideas based on real user needs.
- To synchronise technical feasibility with feature requests.
- To validate ideas among your power users.
- To build trust and transparency with a public roadmap.
Manage feedback in 3 steps – the StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management System
Anatomy of the StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management System
After several user interviews (big shoutout to those who took part in this process!), we identified 3 main phases of the feedback management process most teams go through which are:
- ideation & feedback collection,
- idea screening & priorization,
- validation & implementation.
In the following, we’ll show you how StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management support you in each step of the process.
Step 1 – Collect product insight into a single repository
Product insights can take various forms such as product bugs identified by the dev team or feature requests of users. Product feedback can come from a variety of channels, making it quite challenging to keep track of how many users on what channels actually requested a feature. When it comes to priorization and roadmapping, transparency is key. This is why collecting all product-related insights into a single pool is critical.
Streamlining all product insights into a flat backlog makes your life so much easier because by making sure you’re keeping track of them, you can deal with insights later. You can bump into product insights all the time – even when you’re deeply immersed into something completely different. Come back and make decisions on insights when you’re not caught up in other tasks.
Where do insights come from?
- direct user feedback via email, Intercom, Zendesk etc.
- feedback from the support team
- user interviews
- cool content on the web such as TechCrunch
- feedback from the product team
- and more
Give an aim to every insight immediately
Once you have your flat backlog of product insights coming from different channels, you have only one goal left at this stage: sort insights based on their purpose and empty out your insights inbox. How can you do that?
Link insights to an idea – Create actionable feature ideas and add related insights to see where ideas originally came from.
Incubate insights – If you need some more information before making a decision on an insight, set it aside.
Archive insights – Infeasible ideas or low prio requests? Push them to archive where you can find them anytime without taking up valuable mental and virtual space on your backlog.
Step 2 – Build actionable ideas from insights
Incorporating several insights, ideas serve as the middle level in product feedback hierarchy. Ideas should be created for features that could be pushed to development. So while insights are only crumbs of information, ideas might be putting icing on your donut where several crumbs (or drops) make up that icing.
For example: Several users leave you comments that they want to have some kind of profile picture. User A might want to upload her own picture, while User B might want to use gravatars. The idea based on these insights will be enabling profile pictures.
Prioritize product ideas
Ideally, you’ll have many actionable ideas ready based on insights from various channels. Obviously, due to limited resources, you can’t make everyone’s dreams come true and push all of them into development. At this stage, the team needs to decide which ideas have a higher priority. Having user insights linked to product ideas will help you to make better, data-driven decision but also provide opportunity for re-evaluation.
Collaborate & build on ideas
Once you have some actionable ideas ready, start elaborating on the most important ones. Invite your team to pitch in and collaborate around the idea:
- comment on ideas,
- attach some designs.
Follow up with users & close the feedback loop
As your feature idea slowly starts to take shape, you may need to have a deeper understanding of user needs. Contact information to users who provided insights is visible under ideas, allowing you to
- get in touch with users to schedule and interview for better understanding,
- increase user engagement by closing the feedback loop and letting them know how their idea is being implemented,
- send out feature announcements to the group of users who suggested the same feature.
Step 3 – Validate product & feature ideas on a Public Roadmap
Your ideas board looks like a standard kanban board where ideas can have different statuses: under consideration, planned, work in progress, released, cancelled. Here, you can easily drag ideas to the right column if their status changes – but the ideas board is only visible to you.
It will be the Public Roadmap board where you can make some of your feature ideas and their statuses public and invite your power users to vote and comment on them. You can start building an engaged audience you can always turn to when the idea reaches development stage. You’ll be able to decide in case of each idea whether you want to make it public.
The StoriesOnBoard Public Roadmap is currently under development, but it will serve as the last piece of the feedback management puzzle. Stay tuned for updates!
Fail fast and learn fast with the discovery – feedback loop
Speed of development, ideation and adaptation might be the most important success factor of agile teams today. Given that features get copied all the time, you can only embrace a competitive advantage is you’re constantly two steps ahead of your competition, researching needs of your users they might have not even realized yet.
The StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management System is designed to help you identify insights worth building on, push them quickly further along in the ideation process and have them validated by users before they go into development.
Become part of the story with the Beta Program
Be one of the firsts to try the StoriesOnBoard Feedback Management by joining the beta program. Try the app, complete the survey and tell us how we could make it even better in an interview! We’ll make sure to repay the effort with suitable rewards.
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