Thank you to everyone who participated in ProductPlan’s 2015 Product Roadmap Survey. We had a terrific response, with so many product managers giving us their perspective on the goals and challenges of product roadmaps.

Some key results:

  • Most roadmaps are executive facing. The secondary audience is the product team.
  • The primary objective of most roadmaps is to communicate product strategy. A secondary objective is to help plan and prioritize.
  • Coincidentally, the top challenges match the top objectives. Product managers struggle with communicating product strategy and prioritizing.
  • Most roadmaps are updated monthly or weekly.
  • Despite new tools on the market, most product managers still use presentation software and spreadsheets to manage their roadmaps.
  • The top issues with managing roadmaps is the amount of time they take to update. A second issue is that they are not visually compelling.

You can view the full results here.

And we’re happy to announce the winner of the GoPro drawing: Firas, a product manager with a software company in Nevada! Thanks to everyone who participated in our survey.

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3 Comments

  • Mario
    September 19, 2015 at 10:28 am

    Product roadmaps are a source of frustration in our organization because they focus on a priotized list of features down the road that have not really been validated. I’ve tried to get our founders and product team to focus more on outcomes instead of output. The way that we do this is by having a few quarterly objectives focused on key outcomes. One example is “Driving User Engagement.” This includes our conversion % and email capture. This way the product team can rally around key objectives and have a say in the features that will achieve those outcomes.

    • Jim Semick
      September 21, 2015 at 2:45 pm

      Mario, thanks for your comment. We agree – roadmaps should be outcome-driven and based on the strategic objectives of the organization or product. To many roadmaps are simply lists of prioritized features (often prioritized based on the latest thinking or sales call). Your method of using objectives and themes is a great way to approach roadmaps.

  • Jim
    September 24, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    We got some fantastic results from our survey – check out the complete results at http://www.productplan.com/product-roadmap-survey/

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