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Knowledge Base

Tutorials and tips

This section applies to BigPicture version 7 and later.

About Roadmap

Our SAFe® based Roadmap module is a quite simple yet unspeakably effective tool which allows you to manage objectives of Program Increments and their iterations as well. Compared to Board module, it primarily concentrates on high-level planning including forecasts and commitments rather than particular tasks. This article focuses on basic concepts of "Scheduling with Roadmap". 

Agile schedule

Before the first use, you need to set out Agile schedule in your Program which is a set of Program Increments consisting of iterations. 

You can either create an Agile schedule using Generate schedule wizard located in Program configuration...

...or simply add new Program Increments providing all data manually. 


Automatic configuration of schedule can also be performed during Program creation process. (step 5.1. Agile schedule)

Iteration's/ Program Increment's lifecycle

There are three statuses for every iteration/ Program Increment:

  1. FORECAST - it will be executed in the future so it is still under planning
  2. IN PROGRESS - it is now during execution
  3. CLOSED - it has already finished.

All the following transitions between statuses are allowed. (Edit mode needs to be enabled first) 

FORECAST → IN PROGRESS and vice versa


IN PROGRESS/FORECAST → CLOSED and vice versa

When closing a Program Increment, a user is prompted to decide what to do with open objectives afterwards. 

All objectives previously marked as "Failed" will remain in a given status after reopening a Program Increment. These objectives will also be automatically cloned (these are later called instances) and added to the next iteration/Program Increment with status Open

Roadmap's timeline

A timeline gives you the ability to have an high-level overview showing key deadlines since the start of the first Program Increment till the end of the last Program Increment.

The undeniable advantage of Roadmap's timeline are markers that can be created all over its length. Markers are specific points along a development timeline (basically, they are key deadlines you need to keep in your mind). They can serve as reference points for anybody involved in the project or Agile Release Train (in case your company is SAFe® oriented). A sample marker can be an important event, a product demo or a day of internal review. 

Objectives

An objective is a high-level analogy to work that needs to be done in a given time period. They are a short summary that highlights what needs to be achieved, but do not determine the way it should be done. Such an approach provides more flexibility and team empowerment and allows you to focus on transparent specific objectives at the same time.  

To learn more about the nature and the goal of defining objectives click here

Objective's lifecycle

There are four statuses for an objective: 

  1. Open
  2. Completed - marked as green checkmark
  3. Failed - marked as red cross, cloned and added to the next schedule 
  4. Abandoned - marked with strikethrough


Objective Types

We can distinguish some types of an objectives based on different criteria: 

  1. Schedule level

    • Iteration Objectives (which basically are sprint goals)

    • Program Increment Objectives 

  2. Responsibility

    • Main Objective - they are used to eg. sum up Program Increment objectives of your ART at the end of PI planning

    • Team Objective - they are used to eg. determine team commitment during particular Program Increment

  3. Origin

    • Artificial Objective

    • Task Based Objective

Objective origin and responsibility are crucial information for planning and composing/decomposing objectives. 

Moving objectives

Objective can appear on multiple positions. It can also be given a different status for every single position. The main purpose of such a functionality is to keep track of objectives that there were not achieved. But it can be utilized in many different scenarios.

In general a single objective in a single position is defined as an objective's instance. Creating new instances of the objective is simple and can be done either by selecting Continue... option or using drag and drop holding left Alt key - aim to a white plus sign in a green circle and then drop the objective's instance. 


Statuses of a given objective's instances can be managed from Details modal window. 

Objective can also be simply moved from position X to position Y using drag and drop (without holding any key) - aim to a white plus sign in a green circle and then drop the objective's instance. 

It actually means that an instance of the objective in position X is deleted and another one is added to position Y. 

Attaching objectives

It is common case that one objectives are consequence of other objectives etc. User is able to attach such an objective to create parent -> children relationship. There are multiple scenarios when such an attachment is needed. Achieving program increment objective like "release new version of the software" can be dependent on achieving other iteration objectives related to new functionalities or bug-fixing. From the other side Iteration Main objectives (objective for whole set of teams) can be result of multiple Team objectives that need to be achieved in prior to Main Objective. To cover all scenarios and avoid illogical attachments following restrictions are defined:

  • Single objective can be attached only to one objective (multi partnership is not possible). 
  • Main objecive A can be attached as child of other main objective B only if B objective's schedule is parent of sibling of parent of A objective's schedule 
  • Team objective C can be attached as child of main objective D only if:
    • D objective's schedule is sibling of C objective's schedule 
    • D objective's schedule is parent of sibling of parent of C objective's schedule

Business Value

General rules

You are allowed to assign Business Value (BV) to each objective you defined on your Roadmap in order to weight objectives between themselves. It may help you to communicate the strategy and context behind these weighting decisions.

In order to be compliant with SAFe®, it is recommended to configure availability of BV within Roadmap module as follows:

  • switch on BV for Team PI objectives
  • switch off BV for other objectives (Program PI objectives, Program Iteration goals, Team Iteration goals).

Configuration of the visibility of Business Value is available in Program configuration.


Please note, that:

  • default values for every Program are set as mentioned above
  • configuration of BV is copied by created new Program based on configuration of existing one
  • configuration of BV is cloned by cloning Program.

Planned or Actual Business Value

Depending on the moment of the PI or iteration (planning or closing time) it is possible to define Planned Business Value (PBV) or Actual Business Value (ABV). 

Use a scale from 1 (lowest) to 10 (highest to assign a proper value to objective. Business value should not be confused with any other measures, such as the associated effort or total story points associated with an objective.

Keep in mind that the status of the schedule determines the possibility to define or modify Business Value. The dependencies looks as follow:

Schedule statusActual BVPlanned BV
forecasteditable

not editable

in progresseditableeditable
closednot editablenot editable

Keep in mind, that attached objectives do not present its Actual or Planned Business Value (even if it exists), as attachment serves only for showing some dependencies between objectives.

In order to provide you with more flexibility, there is no dependency between objective status and its Business Values. It means that setting objectives as 'failed' does not calculate e.g. ABV - you are allowed to assign its value manually to a particular objective.

Sorting objectives

In case your Roadmap is configured to display Business Values for your objectives, you are allowed to sort objectives by its Planned or Actual Business Value.

Go to menu "View" and choose the way you want to sort objectives. It is possible to sort objectives alphabetically, by PBV or by ABV (every option available in ascending or descending order).


Keep in mind that once you perform sorting action, you always sort only the objectives that are currently visible in your Roadmap view.

Such a behaviour is deliberate in order to avoid unintentionally sorting some past or future objectives.


Achievement type

Roadmap module provides you with a measure to determine e.g. program predictability. By both main or team objectives you can see achievement indicator that is based on statuses or Business Value assigned to objectives.

Achievement is just a percentage of achieved objectives in a particular position. Go to menu 'View" and pick between 2 types of achievement:

  • based on statuses
  • based on Planned and Actual Business Value. 


The formula of the achievement indicator is simple: all successful objectives/ regular objectives * 100%.

In order to be in line with SAFe®, stretched objectives are treated as optional, they are always ignored in the denominator of the formula. Although, in case a stretched objective was marked as successful, it would be included in a numerator of the formula.


Please note, that you can switch off the visibility of team or ART achievement in Roadmap by selecting "None" option.

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