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Let Them Innovate: How to Encourage Ideation & Collaboration within Jira

Atlassian, Jira

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Often, the best or most impactful ideas for improving and iterating on a product come not from Product Managers, Product Marketers, or Developers directly involved in the product's future. Instead, they originate from those who are on the front lines of a company's support organization. Dealing with customers first hand may not be part of every Product Manager's job, so finding a way to solicit ideas from colleagues who do have those interactions is a critical part of ensuring that the direction and growth of a product aligns with consumer feedback. It will also create a sense of inclusion for the people not usually directly involved in the future of your product. 

If you're interested in soliciting valuable ideas from your colleagues, one way to make this happen is by having an "Idea" Issue Type within your Jira project. It's a relatively simple process, and one that your Jira Administrator should be able to handle for you. Here are a few things to consider in order to get started...

 

Consider What Type of Information You'd Like to Receive (Fields)

Here are a few important fields to consider for your "Idea" Issue Type:
  • Who submitted the ticket?
  • Which department do they work in?
  • Where did the idea come from? 
    • Did it come from a customer, a competitor, or was it an original idea? Not all ideas that colleagues submit have to be something they've thought of themselves. 
    • If it came from a customer, which customer was it?
    • If it came from a competitor, which competitor was it? 
  • Which product does the idea have to do with?

 

Consider How You Want to Treat these Ideas (Workflow)

Here's a sample workflow to get you started:

  1. For Consideration ->
  2. Under Review ->
  3. Selected for Development / Future Consideration / Closed

Not all ideas are the next greatest iteration of your product, so you'll want to treat them differently. Some ideas will be chosen, some shelved for the future, and some will be outright rejected. Make sure you have the ability to differentiate.

 

Consider How You'll Interact with These Ideas

Here are a couple of questions to ponder when it comes to the processing of these ideas:

  • Who will be responsible for triaging them?
  • How often will you review the repository of ideas you've generated?

 

There are many ways to encourage collaboration, each unique to the operating procedures of a specific company. However you choose to do it, fostering innovative thinking and providing an outlet for ideas can lead to amazing product development.  

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TAGS: Atlassian, Jira

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