Collaboration suite: Connects every role

What is a collaboration suite?

While there is no specific set of capabilities that a collaboration suite should have, all collaboration suites must have the following characteristic:

A collaboration suite is software that provides businesses with a set of applications, all integrated with a layer of online collaboration tools.

How exactly is this useful?

Effective collaboration tools help you to share knowledge, streamline processes, and keep everyone in the organization on the same page.

Picture this scenario played out in an organization not using a collaboration suite:
Members of an organization are working on a developing a product. The marketing team gathers insight from the social web and records their findings in one document. The marketing team may discover some sales leads, which they must then pass to the sales team. They may also uncover issues which they must pass on the customer support team; they also takes calls and receives emails from customers and makes a list of issues that need to be fixed. the R&D needs to acquire the document from all teams and create requirement that meet the company’s goals and customers’ needs. The project management team then uses the requirements to create relevant tasks and assign time frames for completion.

That’s a lot of steps, right? Not to mention, a lot of documents. If the members of this organization want to successfully deliver the right product, they need to make sure that information is clear when they pass on their documents to another department.

Let’s take a peek into an organization using a collaboration suite:
With a collaboration suite, all organization members can simply log into the software via a browser and have access to information collected by all teams. For example, if they were to use a collaboration suite like OneDesk, the marketing team can use the built-in social media monitoring tool to search for and listen to what is being said about the company’s brand on Facebook, Twitter and blogs. They can then tag the comments as ideas, issues, leads and feedback, and bring them into OneDesk for the appropriate department to find; the support team will find issues in the cases application, and the sales team will find leads in the ideas management tool. They can then make the feedback viewable to all departments, after which the R&D team can turn ideas into requirements, which the project team can create tasks from, and develop products that the market wants.

OneDesk: An all-in-one collaboration suite

collaboration suiteOneDesk includes applications for many roles:

All these applications are interconnected and topped with a layer of collaboration tools such as an activity stream, chat, discussion forums, interactive calendars, blogs and more. These allow team team members to easily communicate with each other and ensure everyone is on the same page. Try OneDesk now for free and get your whole organization collaborating.

Related blog posts:
Collaboration tools: Help get things done
Online collaboration: Communication 2.0
Enterprise collaboration: Going forward
Collaborative learning with web 2.0
Leads generation the social way
Workplace Organization With The Collaboration Inbox
Software for teamwork: A solution for every role
Collaboration software: Why are they popular?
Your Projects Team, Unified with OneDesk

Related tutorials:
OneDesk’s collaboration inbox
Lessons on discussions
Lessons on OneDesk’s collaboration projects

One Response to “Collaboration suite: Connects every role”

  1. Sandeep Yadav says:

    Thank you for your post. Very helpful. :)

  2. Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    […] Waterfall vs. Agile, http://www.onedesk.com/2013/01/waterfall-vs-agile/ […]

  3. Anand Singh says:

    Thanks for such a valuable article about the SRS tips.

  4. sumit kaushal says:

    Scrum employs real-time decision-making processes based on actual events and information. This requires well-trained and specialized teams capable of self-management, communication and decision-making. The teams in the organization work together while constantly focusing on their common interests.

    Scrum involves:

    Initial appointment of a project manager called the “scrum master.”
    Definition and prioritization of tasks to be done.
    Planning sessions for each task.
    Daily meetings among teams.
    Identification and evaluation of potential project risks and process pitfalls.
    Execution of projects in brief, high-intensity, frequent work sessions.
    Reviews of progress and evaluations of completed projects.
    Openness to constructive criticism and ideas for improvement.

  5. Matthew Buttice says:

    Hi Shayne,

    At the moment our customer portal does not include a bill payment structure and is limited to receiving and responding to customer feedback primarily.

    We will note your suggestion and notify you if this feature becomes available in the future.

  6. Shayne says:

    Hello, we need a portal for customers to view invoices, and pay their bill.
    Would you guys be able to provide us such a service/program?
    Thank you

  7. Matthew Buttice says:

    Hi Murali,

    What examples would you have used in the context of a live project that you have been a part of? Thanks for your input!

  8. Murali Sai says:

    The role and responsibilities of the scrum master in this write-up should have beenexplained in detail citing examples from the live project context.

    M Murali Sai
    Hyderabad

  9. Inambao says:

    This is a very elaborate post. Thanks for sharing Kimberley!!

  10. Matthew Buttice says:

    Thanks for your input Arvind! You are correct that scrum is a project management methodology as an overarching component but what I understand is that you don’t see it as effective when applied to software development for your organization, is that correct?

    If your scrum leader was having a review twice a week, perhaps they were not applying the methodology correctly, since the review meetings are usually held at the end of every sprint, which usually are between 2-4 weeks and not every few days

  11. Arvind Kumar says:

    After going through all the text, till now I could not even realize how this is even a methodology. The steps mentioned like Sprint planning,Sprint review meeting. Which work in this work which does not involved planning an overview.

    And this daily overview, really? In my projects, I have seen some managers were very enthusiastic to apply the method. They first told to have twice review meeting. Well we engineers had no problems. After some time they were so much under pressure, reduced it to once a week. But even once a week, it became burden for them.

    Second problem I have with this methodology is that it nowhere deal with any real analysis, modelling, but only coding and testing.Somebody may argue, that model might be one sprint. I think for that one has to go out of this methodology.

    I think scrum is more a project management methodology than software development.

  12. […] The Lean Startup by Eric Ries More on writing SRS […]

  13. […] links: Customer Portal Forms Customer Portal Overview […]

  14. […] your existing practices are good enough? Well, according to product management company OneDesk, 59 percent of middle managers miss valuable information every day, simply because they can’t […]

  15. […] Successful Marketing in Four Short Factors: Why Was the Release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 So Successful? […]

  16. Aaratee says:

    It helped me alot in stepping ahead towards my horizon :)
    Grazie :)

  17. […] And if you ignore the negative…things could get a little messy. Take a quick look at OneDesk’s infographic […]

  18. cendy says:

    another sample of srs for scope

  19. Matthew Buttice says:

    Thanks for the comment and description. What would you consider to be a strateg or “full method” as you put it?

  20. Orchestrate says:

    Agile and Scrum are terms employed in project management. The Agile methodology employs progressive and repetitive work cadences that also are referred to as sprints. Scrum, on the opposite hand is that the form of agile approach that’s employed in software development.

    The Agile methodology is employed in project management and it helps project manufacturers to create software applications that are unpredictable in nature.

    Scrum could be a style of agile approach that’s utilized in development of software system applications. it’s simply a framework and not a strategy or a full method. It doesn’t offer elaborated directions to what must be done rather most of it’s captivated with the team that’s developing the software system.

  21. […] analysis techniques and tools Functional Requirements vs Non Functional Requirements Why Requirements Approval Matters and How To Make It Easier Why We Need Requirements […]

  22. […] Requirements analysis techniques and tools Functional Requirements vs Non Functional Requirements Why Requirements Approval Matters and How To Make It Easier Why We Need Requirements Approval […]

  23. Kevin says:

    Thank you for the information, Geoff! Appreciate it.

    Very interesting and clear on describing and outlining scrum as just one of many types of agile methodology.

    Regards,
    Kevin

  24. Matthew Buttice says:

    Hi! To answer your question, Scrum is a specific type of agile methodology. There are multiple different variations on the agile methodology and Scrum is one of those.

  25. shashank says:

    Hello Kim,
    The information you provided is really good. It helped me a lot in understanding about Agile methodology. I just need a clarity whether Agile and Scrum are one and the same?

  26. […] Related blog posts: OneDesk Project Management Applications Managing a project team and their tasks […]

  27. […] “A product roadmap is a tool that provides a strategic guidance to team members, business partners and customers. Just as a map of a city helps you reach your destination, product roadmaps provide organizations with a plan to shape and define their product’s vision.” Source OneDesk […]

  28. Matthew Buttice says:

    Hi Vishav,

    Scrum is a type of Agile methodology since it is derived from the same conceptual framework.

  29. What are some of the best sites and tools for CRM tools.

  30. Vishav Premlall says:

    Hi guys,

    I always thought that scrum was more of a subset of agile. Could someone please clarify this aspect for me? (Without using tools or much technicality)

    Thanks so much

  31. […] Related blog posts: OneDesk Project Management Applications Managing a project team and their tasks […]

  32. […] your existing practices are good enough? Well, according to product management company OneDesk, 59 percent of middle managers miss valuable information every day, simply because they can’t […]

  33. John W says:

    Overall, found your summarized recap of Sprint vs Iteration useful.
    Please note: under helpful tips . . . “Take two days to review your sprint” . . . this is a very ambitious luxury . . . that most Agile Team practicing Scrum would NOT find doable. In the real world, your focus is optimizing the team’s time to understand what is in their backlog, what can be addressed in the next sprint, duration of the sprint (two weeks, three weeks, etc.), and then, focus on the deliverables called out. Then, at the end of a given sprint, the team may review the deliverables with their stakeholder, review what went well vs what needed to be re-assessed, what needs to be re-done and/or planned for the next sprint, and verify with the stakeholder what was delivered vs what is envisioned for the next sprint, etc., etc.
    If a team is allowed 2-to-4 hours to accomplish all of this between sprints, then this is a much more realistic milestone to shoot for. BUT two days is not realistic, when you consider a sprint is 2 to 3 weeks each time. That means in a years time that 34 to 52 days have been consumed in “reviews”, based on your taking two days to review your sprint.
    My two cents . . .

  34. levitra says:

    Thanks for that! It’s just the answer I needed.

  35. Matthew Buttice says:

    Hi Vlad! Glad you enjoyed the article.
    To answer your questions. 1)The methodology that would most likely be applied to the business strategy process (with some adaptation of course) would most likely be the Agile methodology, due to it’s inherent flexibility.
    2) The simplest form I can come up with would be this : Agile is about being flexible and responding rapidly to changes in feedback, requirements, and market needs.
    As for Scrum, I recommend showing them the video linked in this post : http://www.onedesk.com/2014/06/scrum-master-role-and-responsibilities/

    Let me know if that helps!

  36. Vlad says:

    Thank you, Kimberly! I like your approach!

    1. Is it possible to apply these methodologies to the business strategy process (since it is non-stop process)?
    2. How would you explain business students and “dummies” the terms: “agile” and “scrum”?

    Thank you in advance.

  37. imgur says:

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  38. amesh pb says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    You have not answered the question you raised – can someone explain under what circumstances each of these methods applly :
    NPV, PAY BACK, ROI, IRR

    Thanks

  39. Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but after going through many of the articles I realized it’s new to me.

    Anyhow, I’m certainly pleased I came across it and I’ll be book-marking
    it and checking back regularly!

  40. After reading this and as per my knowledge and understanding on SDLC, Agile is much robust and is more persistence in terms of on going development. Also, Agile provides some chance in reverse engineering as well as run time space to get it more useful for the business owners or client.

  41. The prioritization/assignment feature looks great

  42. […] a survey in 2012 – 53% of companies state that organisational culture is the biggest barrier to agile […]

  43. […] and development practices, so they can make improvements during the working course. Since Agile projects are three times more successful than Waterfall projects, we decided to share a few essential elements with you, extracted from our Agile experience so far. […]

  44. […] The use of Agile methodologies in organizations is increasing, many are unclear on what differentiates Agile and Waterfall, and how to effectively utilize them.  […]

  45. Ravi says:

    very informative. Thanks
    Please have a look into this article also http://www.etechpulse.com/2014/06/difference-between-agile-and-waterfall.html

  46. Graham Patterson says:

    I was looking for some examples of User Stories for helpdesk type software when I came across this. I think it is a very interesting and concise explination of the difference and the reasons why they differ. Excellent stuff and it makes me want to keep watching for future posts by Catherine.

  47. Ian Zafra says:

    It’s also important to let your team know what the team priorities are. They need to know what they’re aiming for like response times, target number of closed tickets, and specific call metrics. Use these goals to motivate them to perform well. Some agents go about their day doing calls without having targets in mind. Having these objectives set in place will give them direction.

    5 Simple Things you can Do to Improve Your Company’s Helpdesk |
    http://www.spi-global.com/blog/think-tank/5-simple-improve-companys-helpdesk/

  48. […] Agile adoption is increasing. According to the 2012 CHAOS report, Agile succeeds three times more often than waterfall. Here are a 10 of our favorite Agile-related statistics.  […]

  49. Mary Taylor says:

    Great post! But I think we all agree that feedback should not be limited to the holiday season. Well, Easter is coming but we need feedback continuously only this helps us learning and adapting quickly to the ever changing environment

  50. Mary Taylor says:

    The most important alignment you have to make in your organization is to improve everyone’s customer service skills. It’s most important these days that everyone in your company keeps a close eye on customer needs and satisfaction. Get feedback whenever you can. Thus, always! :)
    Great post,
    Best,
    Mary

  51. […] previously wrote a post entitled Waterfall vs. Agile, in which I explain what differentiates Agile from Waterfall. The Agile methodology was basically […]

  52. Very good article and great video. Thank you for sharing!
    Customer service is the number one priority for today’s consumers.

  53. […] – more systems means a bigger chunk of time devoted to learning them. More time devoted to learning new systems means less time utilizing the potential of existing resources. Getting your project out of the door […]

  54. Alexia Marthoon says:

    As a project manager, I use Scrum in my projects. The Guide to Scrum Body of Knowledge by SCRUMstudy provided a complete reference for the Scrum project I am working with. It is a very good book and extremely readable. I really liked sections on risk and quality. The tools mentioned in the processes were very helpful. I highly recommend this book if you are planning to implement Scrum in your organization. You can go through the first chapter available on http://www.SCRUMstudy.com

  55. […] Finally, Agile is here to stay because it works. Kimberly Chan of OneDesk has a great blog post summarizing Agile statistics (see http://www.onedesk.com/2013/05/agile-adoption-statistics-2012/). […]

  56. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Aravind,

    You are right, choosing which methodology to follow for SDLC is not easy. The truth is, there is no “right” methodology for SDLC. The best methodology depends on your company. Before choosing a methodology, you need to understand what your company’s goals are, and how the people in your company work. Agile works best in small to medium sized organizations because it requires tight collaboration and a disciplined team that will stick to the process. Not all teams are willing to adapt to this type of work culture; it also requires a good leader. Agile is also possible with big teams, through the use of collaborative project management software. Teams would need to be trained on using them. With proper training, dedication and management, Agile can yield better results.

    Waterfall is easier to understand, especially if the team is inexperienced. It’s the best method to use if you are more concerned about quality than with going over budget or schedule.

    I hope this helped. Let us know if you have any more questions.

    Kim

  57. Aravind Vadde says:

    What are the main factors we need to check ,for to decide which methodolgy to follow for SDLC.I have read many differences between agile and waterfall ,but still when it comes to the point of implementing ..it is tricky to understand .One of the user specified waterfall is for big projects ..infact i think big projects need agile instead of waterfall as developing big project can not be completley sequential..It is common to change requirements,designs ,cost and time frame for big projects whereas in other when it comes to small projects , it is more easier to follow sequential proccess instead iterating multiple times.
    Not only in SDLC but more common use of agitlity in every aspect of our lives ..is confusing me and making me to think ambigouos about the methodoly i need follow.

  58. Hi Abdullah,

    Thanks for reaching out. I would be happy to answer any questions you might have on this topic.

    Best of luck with your thesis.

    Catherine

  59. Eng. Abdullah says:

    Dear Catherine,

    I am completing my post graduate study in engineering project management and i am now prepare for my thesis about The role of mobile technology in project management,
    could you please help me in these topics.

    Thanks in advance

  60. Hi Hape,

    Glad you like the post. Unfortunately, I do not have access to the Gartner report but you can find the sources for the rest of the statistics here:
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/alexlawrence/2012/11/01/five-customer-retention-tips-for-entrepreneurs/
    http://www.damarque.com/blog/gianluigi-cuccureddu/lack-collaboration-or-ineffective-communication-cause-workplace-failures
    http://thisiswhatgoodlookslike.com/tag/mckinsey-28-hours-time-each-week-spent-by-knowledge-workers-writing-e-mails/

    The secret to better team building:

    Clear understanding of goals
    Open and honest communication
    A strong sense of “we” but also a firm grasp on what the individual brings tgo the table.

    Do you agree?

    Best,

    Catherine

  61. Hape Etzold says:

    Thank you for these great hard facts. These are the only recent statistical figures I found on the issues of teamwork or the lack of it in many companies. Could you also name the sources?
    All the team building activities seem to be fruitless because of individual politics, e.g. hoarding valuable information for fear of loosing the status of being irreplaceable… Do you have any ideas for better team development?

  62. Jon says:

    This is hilarious and so true!

  63. Hi Francis,

    I am glad you enjoyed the cartoon. Dilbert always knows what to say, doesn’t he? It is nice to connect with you on LinkedIn and through our blogs! These are great points and I really enjoyed your post today. I agree 100%- being able to effectively juggle those elements you mentioned is critical to the success of a project.

    See you around the online project management community. :)

    Best,

    Catherine

  64. Hi Catherine,

    I enjoyed watching the Dilbert vid, thanks for sharing! :)

    Reasons for project failure is a MASSIVE topic. I’m sure you could think of pretty much any reason under the sun why a project could fail. I’m sure there’s a project out there somewhere that failed because the coffee machine broke!!

    I wrote a blog earlier today where I was arguing that a chief cause of failure is not following a methodology. You might enjoy reading/following this… blog.qualityprojectdelivery.com

    For your success criteria that’s a bit easier to nail. Here’s a list of the objectives I think a project manager has to stay on top of during the project:

    * Costs – +/- an amount of budget.
    * Timescales – +/- amount of time on completion date.
    * Quality – +/- off quality specification
    * Scope – inclusion/exclusion of must haves, nice to haves.
    * Risks – individual and aggregated risks
    * Benefits – +/- % from an improvement goal

    Obviously the PM uses a plan, RAID log, highlight report, etc to do their job, but ultimately it all comes back to managing those six points.

    Hope that helps. If you’ve got any comments for me on my blog that would be really welcome.

    All the best

    Francis

  65. Hi Uladzislau,

    Thanks for sharing your insights. I will definitely take a look. Please feel free to suggest more resources.

    Best,

    Catherine

  66. You are absolutely right, Donna. It’s going to take a lot more than that to keep customers satisfied. I am happy you enjoyed this post and thanks for your insights.

    -Catherine

  67. Donna says:

    The whole “I’m great, just ask me!” mindset is not working for companies anymore…and the Gartner study seems to prove it.
    Thanks for sharing this!

  68. Ganesh says:

    Hi Kimberly,
    I follow Christopher Cummings, Saeed Khan’s blog (On Product Management) and Brain Mates. Will check the others.
    I would add SVPG blog to this list.
    Also, invite you to check Confianzys Blog (I work for Confianzys) on Product Management. http://www.confianzys.com/blog
    Cheers,
    Ganesh

  69. Ganesh says:

    Hi Kimberly,

    I follow Christopher Cummings, Saeed Khan’s blog (On Product Management) and Brain Mates. Will check the others.

    I would add SVPG blog to this list.

    Also, invite you to check Confianzys Blog (I work for Confianzys) on Product Management. http://www.confianzys.com/blog

    Cheers,
    Ganesh

  70. Can I suggest a related resource? Why Projects Fail is an in-depth book containing suggestions and recommendations regarding failed projects, case studies and analysis.

  71. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Mark,

    Good to hear you’re more confident with this approach – proves that you’re on the right track. Once the velocity is established, you’ll be able to move through project cycles faster and more smoothly. You may even want to work on increasing velocity after awhile as this can help make budgets less costly.

    Best of luck, and feel free to reach out to us anytime

  72. Mark Focas says:

    Hi Kimberley,
    Thank you for writing not just a reply to my question but a whole blog post! That is much appreciated. The approach I have taken is very close to yours, so I feel I am on a good path, time will tell, and as it is a new development company providing services so the sprint velocity etc. are still to be ascertained.
    Certainly I am a lot more confident about the project running to a better timeline using this approach. I have in the past used a type of hybrid approach with work defined in larger units than a sprint, more like about 1 month of work at a time, and the level of specification varied over the iterations as the developers and I gained a better understanding of what we felt needed to be scoped and what could be left as easy to infer. I look forward to the more rapid feedback cycle of breaking this into smaller chunks again.
    Thanks again for replying to my question.

  73. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Mark,

    Great question. I had to think this one out, and while I was doing so, I realized this is also something that many, especially those who are new at Agile, struggle with. Hence, I have dedicated a whole blog post to your question. You can view it here:

    http://www.onedesk.com/2013/08/estimating-costs-for-agile-projects/

    Thanks for the inspiration, and please let me know if you have any further questions!

    -Kim

  74. Rob says:

    Just as I was trained back in the early 80’s to design COBOL programs in a format that would later be labelled “object oriented”, when I became a business analyst, the goal of my requirements elicitation meetings was to acquire the customer perspective in a format that would later be labelled “user stories”.

    And though the works of motivational speakers are highly valuable and I very much recommend reading and listening at every opportunity, they are really just ancient wisdom articulated in books such as Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, as well as other sources from other civilizations. But they are much easier for the modern mind to “get”.

    I understand what Solomon meant when he said “there is nothing new under the sun.

    Regarding User Stories vs Use Cases, in a way a use case is to a user story what functional specs are to Business Requirements. It really just more clearly articulates and quantifies it. The user story is the starting point and, most importantly, gets the customer’s pain out front and on the table so that scope can be defined and requirements actually meeting the client’s TRUE needs can be created.

    It’s nice to know that you are working from an understanding of WHY the customer really needs the project output in the first place. It not only improves quality, but increases job satisfaction.

    And with a bit of tweaking, Use cased become test cases.

  75. […] was reading a post by Kimberly Chan on lean vs agile yesterday and wanted to expand on it some. Kimberly correctly compares lean, in the (mostly) […]

  76. Mark Focas says:

    Hi Kimberley, interesting post, thanks. I was wondering, with the charts showing the relative success of Agile and Waterfall, one of the criteria is finishing on budget. What I haven’t been able to work out yet is how to estimate how much an Agile project will cost up front. This seems contrary to the way Agile works, yet if the costs cannot be determined up front, then is it really possible to know if the project was successful from a budgetary perspective?

  77. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Yousaf, thanks for your insight. You are right – teams should take the time to properly understand the differences between methodologies before transitioning to them. Switching processes when the team is not ready can only lead to more challenges.

  78. Yousaf Khan says:

    Good to know the statistics on the comparison. In this day and age PMs are definitely pressured to deliver faster, but are constrained by organizational paradigms to continue to “manage” a project instead of “leading” teams to deliver customer value. I find that often it is difficult for the PM to understand the core differences between Agile and Waterfall, in the basic objective of leading collaborative teams to successful projects. For any PM that understands the application of the concepts behind Agile and their application in the real world, these statistics are definitely not a surprise.

  79. Mohammed Shahjahan says:

    Hi Robert,

    I’m interested to join and learn Project Management intensely.Though I’m PMP certified but I have to go a long way in grasping it thoroughly.

    Appreciate if you could connect me via shahjahan.md@gmail.com

    Best Regards,
    Shahjahan
    +65 98577186 (M)
    Skype:shahjahan1969

  80. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Jeff,

    Thank you for sharing your story, it’s a pleasure for us to work with you as well! Yes, I thought that quote from Patton was very appropriate for this introduction piece as he really is a true leader who learns his lessons and teaches them well – glad you think so too!

    Best,

    Kim

  81. Jeff Furman says:

    Kimberley, thanks again – and how great is it to be first in your new series! I look forward to reading all the upcoming contributors. A pleasure working with you!

    Also, you used a quote from Patton in your opening. I think of Patton for Lessons Learned also because it is said that he read Rommel’s book, “Infantry Attacks” (based on Rommel’s tactics developed in World War I) as a way of learning how to defeat him in World War II.

  82. Thanks for your question, Claudio. I believe that the “fuzzy front end of innovation would reside in the early stages of product planning.

    Thanks,

    Catherine

  83. Claudio says:

    I have a question!
    Does de fuzzy front-end make part of the product lifecycle managament or is a pre-stage of PLM?

  84. Kimberley Chan says:

    You’re welcome!

  85. Hi Kimberly, thank you for the reference.

  86. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Fanny,

    Thanks for reading, and thank for suggesting Frank Lio’s site. I read some of his posts, and I agree, they are well written and very insightful.

    Kim

  87. Fanny Woo says:

    Thanks for the links. I am a fan of Saeed Khan and his “On Product Management”.

    May I suggest “Frank Lio: Practical Product Management, Marketing, Strategy, and Life” at URL http://www.franklio.weebly.com

    He is a product manager who mixes business school thinking with street smarts. A very mixed bag of topics with some clever, witty writing.

  88. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Nicholas, thanks for reading and pointing that out, it has been changed.

  89. Nicholas Ho says:

    Nice article. One Correction – Eric Lies should be Eric Ries – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Ries

  90. Hi Cindy! Thanks! I am happy to hear (though not surprised) that the Global Product Management Talk has taken off in a BIG way! I wish I could make it out to that Startup Product Summit event – it sounds like it is right up our alley! Thanks again for sharing this info.

    Looking forward to future discussions,

    Catherine

  91. Hi Catherine,

    Thank you for including the Global Product Management Talk!
    Archives are available on any podcast service by searching for ProdMgmtTalk including iTunes http://bit.ly/silH98
    Android App http://bit.ly/tEeWFx
    Stitcher http://bit.ly/SOUGNF
    RSS http://bit.ly/IyCnJD

    What started as the #ProdMgmtTalk twitter chat is now a top ten business podcast on the blogtalkradio network and we broadcast out of a 6 time emmy award winning studio in the San Francisco Bay Area!

    The weekly discussion with product experts and passionate product people has spawned a movement and growing community that meets regularly in person, Startup Product Talks http://sfproducttalks.com and you can bring it to your community, http://meetup.com/startupproduct

    The first Startup Product Summit all day conference featured 14 speakers and was held in San Francisco last February with plans underway for the next Startup Product Summit on October 11, 2013 http://startupproductsummit.eventbrite.com

    Looking forward to collaborating further!
    Cindy

  92. Thanks for the info Jeff, this looks like a great conference.

    Catherine

  93. Jeff Brown says:

    The Product Management & Innovation Event 2013 addresses the full spectrum of product management, from streamlining innovation to end of lifecycle. This comprehensive event boasts three unique tracks focusing on product management, product innovation and for the first time this year, product finance. This is the eighth rendition of this event, hosting hundreds of product managers this June 24 – 25 in Chicago. http://www.gatewayanalyticsnetwork.com/m123-home

  94. Kimberley Chan says:

    Thanks for your insight Adrian. You are right, Agile projects move a lot faster. This is why in order for Agile projects to be successful, tight collaboration and communication as well as the right mindset and tools are essential.

  95. Adrian says:

    I think of the waterfall SDLC as crawling (i.e., executing the phases of the SDLC in a steady, logical and sequential manner) and the agile SDLC as running (i.e., executing these same phases in a rapid, random and concurrent manner). If you agree with that analogy then should also agree that trying to sprint before you know how to crawl is a bad idea. That’s just one of the problems I’ve seen with agile projects.

  96. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Trevor,

    Thanks again for your insight – you’re right on point. Our goal is to help people to understand the emerging aspects of social project management, and I’m glad to see we helped you. Feel free to ask us to clarify anything else!

    Kim

  97. Hi Kimberley,
    I think you’re right on the mark. Social Media doesn’t affect the delivery, but it can absolutely affect the evolution, especially in software projects or projects with evolving iterations. And I think the OneDesk integration is a fantastic way to take advantage of that. It’s much better to funnel the feedback in, rather than search for it, and I agree with your point about honesty. For whatever reason, comments on social media channels seem to be more open and honest, and less critical just to be critical.

    And thanks again for taking the time to expand on this. I think it helps me, and others, better understand not only OneDesk’s position, but also the usefulness of the product.

    Trevor

  98. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Trevor,

    Thank you for elaborating on your point. You are absolutely right, social media does not directly elevate the actual management of a project – it certainly will not improve things like costs, schedule, and resources.

    However, social media may directly affect other components that are linked to project management. As you said, it may not affect the delivery of a project in it’s current state, but there is no denying that changing customer demands affects project management. Thoughts on this?

    As always, we really appreciate your insights Trevor, and hope to see you at the next #PMChat :)

    Kim

  99. Hi Kimberley,
    I appreciate your expanding on our conversation and explaining your position a bit more. And thanks very much for joining #pmchat last week.

    If you’ll allow me, I’d like to expand a bit more on my comment, especially in light of your post here.

    While I agree with your points, and how social media can enhance (elevate) certain processes, I still don’t think that project ‘management’ is one of those processes. In the examples you’ve given, I see that as enhancing/elevating project/product “development” or “evolution”, but not the management (or delivery) of the project. The feedback monitoring and bug ID would be occurring during the testing phase at the earliest, or perhaps during iterations. That’s where I was going with my comment on #pmchat. Monitoring social media doesn’t by itself improve/enhance/elevate the ‘management’ of projects. Yes, it provides an avenue for feedback, and as you’ve stated above, in some cases it may be a superior avenue. But those comments aren’t affecting the delivery of the project in it’s current state (unless you’re implementing feedback comments “during” the current sprint cycle). But even then, you’re talking about scope modifications or changing requirements, things which will be implemented during the next phase/iteration. I don’t see social media having any relevant impact on the schedule, cost, resources, or even business case of a project, at least not during the management and delivery of the project.

    To be fair, I really do like the social media monitoring capability you’ve built into OneDesk. And I think it’s very valuable from a product improvement standpoint. I just disagree that social media, in any of its forms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) “elevates” (improves) project management in any way that other forms of communication don’t.

    Thanks again.

    Trevor

  100. Absolutely. Its important that all stakeholders including the customer should be on the same page regarding the ‘requirements’. If not there come numerous change requests which leads to escalated cost…The team just toils but the timelines are never met. The delivery too would not be as per customers satisfaction. Collaboration, sharing and communication are really important for the success…

  101. Thank you. I just signed up for the free trial offer to see if One Desk can help me organize my Solar Broker business into more streamlines and efficient processes. From here I believe my team and I can begin to tackle some of the many tasks that were weighing us down in confusion and disarray.

  102. Great Article ! Thanks

  103. Kimberley Chan says:

    Jim – Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree that there are many more essential components to successful project management – hopefully this brief overview leads people to dig deeper and think about the other essentials.

    Glen – Thanks for sharing the report. Agreed, competent people make everything much easier! Credible processes are also a must, and sometimes, tools can play a role in making processes credible.

  104. Nice video.
    The suggestion that PMs have power to “make the project a success,” is troubling. I work in a rarefied world of US DOD. http://goo.gl/GamCr speaks to some of the problems with program failure. Similar studies have been down on enterprise.

    PM’s can always benefit from improved processes and tools, but the “real” root cause is much more complex. Tools are important, but they need to be connected with credible processes and competent people – a rarity these days.

  105. An efficient system will ensure that things are monitored and addressed properly. Having a tool prepared to track issues, especially for software developers who greatly rely on trial-and-error, will certainly benefit more so that teamwork is an essential part of the whole process.

  106. Jim Milliken says:

    Hi, Kim —

    Thanks for a very useful video, but of course I have to offer some companion thoughts.

    I make a big deal out of defining “failure.” To me, it’s any negative variance greater than 10 percent on cost, schedule or requirements.

    But I have witnessed what happens in the actual establishment, tracking and analysis of project metrics. If you don’t fully clarify things things to start with and befog or manipulate communication throughout, then “success” (i.e., disguised failure) is assured.

    I wouldn’t say project managers and organization leaders are dishonest people, but undisciplined planning/execution/control is far too common — and makes it difficult to be really sure what the hell is going on.

    One other point: In the video’s depiction of what it takes to succeed at project management. I agree wholeheartedly with the three factors that were portrayed. But I would most strongly insist that “commitment” and “persistence” are absolutely essential, and must be included.

    Thanks for a thought-provoking post.

  107. Kimberley Chan says:

    Gillian – Yes, that’s right. The stats have spoken, and while we don’t like to think about it, that’s the reality. Hopefully this video will make people realize this, and try different approaches to project management.

    Craig – thank you for watching the video, glad you enjoyed it!

  108. Craig Brown says:

    Gillingham, I read that as an ironic comment, but I think you are pretty on target there with your analysis.

    Don’t forget it targets the wrong thing more often than not.

    Nice video guys.

  109. Kimberley Chan says:

    No problem Elizabeth, you deserve it!

  110. Elizabeth says:

    Wow, thanks for including me on this list!

  111. Steve and Tom,
    Appreciate your comments. If companies truly recognise the value of strategic product management then they will benefit from the huge up-side.

    Cheers, Natalie

  112. Tom Evans says:

    Thanks for sharing Natalie
    These benefits are best realized when the PM focuses on the strategic aspects of the role and doesn’t get bogged down in the tactical aspects But too many companies lose this benefit because they relegate PMs to managing features and other tactical duties.

  113. Nice post, Nat. We so often focus on the activities of #prodmgmt that we forget the ROI of #prodmgmt. Thanks for the reminders.

  114. Lewis Jordan says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

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  115. Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Sales recruitment is all about potential earnings! Sales people (brokers, reps, telesales staff) all want to earn money, so tell them what they can earn, what their bonus structure is and what their future potential is with the company and you’ll attract huge amounts of applications.

  116. Thanks for the link, Scott. I see you are also on Quora- I hope you do not mind that I added your profile to the list.

    Cheers,

    Catherine

  117. Scott says:

    Congrats to my friends and PM colleagues Rich, Scott & Geoffrey. I look forward to learning more about the other folks.

    FYI it is Mironov http://www.mironov.com/

  118. Keep up the great questions/answers on Quora, Geoff! Do you have any other product people you would like to add to the list?

    Best,

    Catherine

  119. Thanks for sharing, Geoff!

    You are right- there are definitely many great posts that are valuable for different reasons! Hope you have a great 2013.

    Best,

    Catherine

  120. Way too many great posts from the Cranky one. But the one on the sales droid brain is the one I remember vividly.

    http://crankypm.com/2011/12/brain-sales-droid-visual-guide/

  121. Dan says:

    I agree with Alan, but with more footnotes.

    I think the point the article/stripe are missing, is that the need for dedicated Product Management is dependent upon manner factors, not least number of engineers, number of customers and skill set of current employees.

    As I’ve heard many product managers say – ‘Whether or not you have Product Managers, someone’s doing Product Management’. As the article says “The founders or (head honchos) of Stripe, all have extensive experience managing products”. So, in this case, despite not having the title, it would seem that the founders are somewhat filling this role.

    To answer the articles title, ‘do we need product managers?’ The answer is yes. The question you have to ask your company is do you need them as a dedicated function.

    I do believe that some product managers can be blind to the capabilities of other people in their company. Depending on the skills of the people on the team, it is more than possible to be successful without a dedicated position. You don’t need a dedicated person to ‘listen to the market’, but you do need domain experts of that market on your team.

    There can be benefits that dedicated positions can bring. Once you team starts getting too big, it gets harder to have a coordinated strategy if everyone gets to innovate how they see best. Yes, people such as Founders can help with that, but at a certain point the people running the business need to ‘work on the business, not in the business’. At this point, they will need to delegate the responsibility of resolving divergent opinions and coordinating product direction. Hmm, that sounds like a familiar position…

  122. Great point, Alan. Still, it will be interesting to see how long they will be able to sustain this.

    Thanks for your insights!

    Catherine

  123. Alan Klement says:

    1. Stripe is a very small startup.
    2. Stripe is just getting started.
    2. Stripe’s product is just an API for developers to use. There’s actually no GUI – at all.

    Let’s come back to Stripe when they have 10,000+ customers, any kind of GUI and is at least 1 year old.

  124. Hi Cat – Good article. Parents should be applauded for supporting their children in this way, because very few children will follow through on these important feedback issues without encouragement. Have you thought of reaching out to local parenting associations/publications with this message? Also, the investigative reporter in me still wants to know why Hasbro created the gender bias; I guess the mother is equally frustrated. This touches on using “high-brow” language when dealing with consumers, too. A lot of great points made. I suspect most marketers need re-educating on the value of effective customer communications. The Internet has changed everything.

  125. Katie Parvin says:

    I completely agree. You have to have the right tools in order to be successful. I’ve seen so many businesses struggle, even though they have a great product, but they aren’t equipped with the proper tools necessary to succeed.
    Thanks for the post!

  126. Thanks, Peter. Spoken like a truly passionate product manager. Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts on Quora and Twitter.

    Cheers,

    Catherine

  127. Very thoughtful post. There are so many challenges with the Product Management discipline that it’s difficult to pick the most difficult stage of software development. That being said, I would not want to be working in any other role.

  128. Andrea Lucas says:

    This seems like a great idea for your business. Whether you’re in your office or on the road, it seemed this service may help you keep up-to-date on meetings and tasks. Good post.

  129. […] OneDesk’s Blog reveals that the most important factor is to know your customer’s needs and understand how they prefer to communicate. You need to have a system that track customer behavior and through close collaboration between employees and customers, be able to sufficiently and effectively comply with the customer’s needs. The right customer service technology should be able to grant access to past customer interactions and map communication channels so that customers easily find answers to their questions. […]

  130. […] in this as well. The two I am familar with are Planisware (http://www.planisware.com/) and Onedesk (http://www.onedesk.com/product-t…). Both seem promising when fully adopted. I would love to hear people's experience with either […]

  131. […] information? Your customers have ideas and they want to be heard. In the OneDesk article “Innovation and Product Development Tips,” by Catherine Constantinides, Constantinides writes: The social customer is here to stay, […]

  132. […] OneDesk sponsors the PDMA’s 35th Product Innovation Management Conference | OneDesk OneDesk, an industry leader in social product development, is proud to be a sponsor of the 35th Product Innovation Management Annual Global Conference organized… Source: http://www.onedesk.com […]

  133. […] The development process and some scary facts | OneDesk We thought we would talk about some of the scary things companies are doing when approaching their product or service development process. Source: http://www.onedesk.com […]

  134. […] Co-working and how it stimulates innovation | OneDesk Co-working allows a global community of people to employ the values of collaboration, co-creation, community, openness and accessibility. Source: http://www.onedesk.com […]

  135. Hi Aly,

    Yes, crmoutsiders.com is indeed a great site. Thanks for sharing this with our readers.

    Best,

    Catherine

  136. Aly says:

    Hey Catherine and Chris – Another great blog is crmoutsiders.com. It’s not strictly Social but write frequently and have great insights into the industry.

    All the best – Aly

  137. […] Collaboration suite: Connects every role | OneDesk A collaboration suite is software that provides businesses with a set of applications, all integrated with a layer of online collaboration tools. Source: http://www.onedesk.com […]

  138. Thanks for your suggestion, Chris.

    Best,

    Catherine

  139. Chris Butler says:

    Also lots of Social CRM stuff on our blog at wecando.biz.posterous.com

    Regards

    Chris Butler
    CEO
    WeCanDo.Biz

  140. You are most welcome, Aly. Social CRM has been a hot topic and it is important to provide relevant and timely information to our readers. Paul Greenberg’s blog is definitely an excellent source for all things Social CRM, and its impact on the Enterprise.

    Do you recommend any other Social CRM blogs?

    Best,

    Catherine

  141. Aly says:

    Hi Catherine – Thanks for sharing the blog list! As a CRM supplier and consultant in Texas, I like to keep up with the latest goings-on in the industry. I already read Paul Greenberg’s blog which is full of great information but the others are new to me, so I’ll definitely me checking them out!

    All the best – Aly

  142. Kimberley Chan says:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Aaron! That’s right, engaging with your community can be a lot of fun. It’s also one of the best ways to learn about your brand, products, industry and even competitors. We sure would like to see more people following the 80/20 rule.

  143. Aaron Eden says:

    I’m with you both when it comes to social media automation – where one must do it responsibly. In a good way, social media automation can save you time from the non-productive work of posting news on your niche that your peers may find interesting – so you can use that time saved in focusing on real conversations with them instead. If you ask me, I took Pareto’s principle into a whole new approach, where I’m following the 80/20 rule of social media marketing: as in 80% conversation and 20% automation. I guess, everything’s a chain reaction of events– and social media automation tools can help alleviate the woes of social media fatigue. Besides, the point of getting social online is to engage and have fun doing so, isn’t it?

  144. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi George,
    That’s a very good question, very thought-provoking. Thank you for bringing it up! I do not know the what kinds of studies there have been on the subject, but I am curious to find out. Let’s keep each other updated on our findings.

    I also encourage all our readers to provide information on this subject.

  145. george says:

    I was wondering if there have been studies that quantify the value of customization. From a very real example, we know that you can purchase a plain T shirt for under $5 retail or you can pay $20 for a similar T shirt that has a Nike Logo on it. For some people, the Nike Logo may be worth more than an image they create themselves. Different product categories will enjoy different premiums for different reasons. I was wondering if anyone has ever studied this and if there is any information available on the findings. Thanks for your help.

  146. Kimberley Chan says:

    Hi Jim,
    Thank you for letting me know about your blog. I took a look at it and I think our readers can learn a few things from you. As you can see, I have added your blog to my list.
    Thanks!
    Kim

  147. Jim Holland says:

    Feel free to add my blog to your list. I focus on building product management best practices while using 20 years of B2B product management and product marketing experience

  148. Your discussion about 360 degree feedback has great importance in these days. Because the most people seeking for selection right channel and for business feedback. As you mentioned in your article 360 degree feedback understand all sides of business and 360 evaluations. Every business management wants to get desired feedback, which is only possible through 360 degree feedback & 360 evaluations.

  149. Kim says:

    Hi Lorie,
    Thanks for dropping by. The social web definitely plays its part in revolutionizing business communication and more companies are transforming in to a “social business.” However, transformation is never easy. Do you have any advice for companies who wish to make a smooth transition into Collaboration 2.0?

  150. Lorie Vela says:

    Hi Kim, a pleasure being here.

    I think it is really time now to dig, as you very well point out, deeper into collaboration strategies; the social media and the web 2.0 are not only a revolution for human interaction and communication, but a new way to see our world, and of course, its business implications make us reflects about enterprise models. As Social Media are now to human, Collaboration is to enterprise and Business.

    Thanks again for your mention and quote

    Lorie Vela

  151. Kim says:

    Thanks for your comment. I agree, there is so much more we can say about 360 degree feedback. We do plan on elaborating more on it in future blog posts; stay tuned and feel free to let us know what you would like to read about.

  152. 360 degree feedback is known as multi functional feedback.
    You post a nice article but we can write more here. You describe only the definition of 360 degree feedback, You can also describe the little bit more on 360 degree feedback services, Evaluations, Importance of 360 degree feedback, and much more.

  153. kalpana says:

    This gives the good information about 360 Degree Feedback.360 Feedback is a good HR Software. i got one company from Google Search “CEO Info Tech”.They are providing the best HR Software Products.

  154. Kim says:

    Glad you enjoyed this post, Shep. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us, and keep up the great blogging.

  155. Shep Hyken says:

    Great article and I’m flattered that you included me as part of it. At the root of the modern customer service strategies are the basics. It’s common sense, that unfortunately, isn’t always so common. Thank you again for a great article.
    Shep Hyken, author of “The Amazement Revolution.”

  156. Catherine says:

    Hi Chris,

    Thanks for the comment.

    Yes, I have seen examples of such incentive programs and I can definitely recognize their value. However, this type of interaction may be too transactional in nature and may not provide the opportunity to collect valuable insight. I think organizations need to move beyond the website “feedback form” and explore other channels of communication to capture feedback and engage with their customers.

    Keep an eye on for more development in this area.

    Catherine

  157. Chris says:

    Interesting blog post, all your writing got me thinking about the future of our “social product development.” While our product is transitioning between “technology” and “product” I am looking at software for gathering feedback for the near future. There is one question on my mind, and you can email me or write a post about it: “How do I incentivise customers to provide feedback?” Sure I know that some customers will provide feedback out of passion for the product, and that is great. What about the rest? Have you seen cases of: points & game mechanics, contests, coupons, future discounts, or other “rewards” to solicit feedback and thus entice client (feedback provider) adoption.

  158. jodie_microsoft_smb says:

    One option to look at as an existing CRM tool for integration is Microsoft CRM. It’s available as on-premise and online solution and integrates with Outlook, Word, Excel and other applications via 3rd party apps. The interface is similar to Outlook so users may ramp up more quickly and there are resources for self-assist training and support. This link will give you more details: http://smb.ms/OutreachfDvU57

    Regards,
    Jodi E.
    Microsoft SMB Outreach Team
    msftoft@microsoft.com

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