what it is, types and how to develop this tool for your business – WAU

The roadmap works as a visual and objective guide that points out the paths that a company must take to launch a new product or project. Thus, it is essential to achieve strategic objectives and add value to the business during the journey.

The roadmap is an important guide that will point the ways best suited for a product launch or new project. It is he who will help to organize the entire trajectory necessary to achieve a certain objective.

Thus, this tool helps to obtain an overview of each action and offers the directions that must be taken for growth in the business.

The most interesting thing about the roadmap is that it is a visual and very practical tool. With this, it helps to learn from mistakes and facilitates decision making for the next steps.

Do you want to better understand how the roadmap works and how it can facilitate the success of your projects? Read on and find out!

What is roadmap

As the name suggests, the roadmap is a kind of map of a project.

Do you know that maxim that, for those who don’t know where they want to go, any path will do? So, the roadmap is precisely the resource that will keep you focused on your goals and point out the best directions to achieve them.

The roadmap must be prepared at the moment when a new product or project is idealized, becoming a guide from the “birth” of the idea until its implementation. It can – and should – continue to be used even after the product is launched.

It describes all the elements of the project: the market, the public, the deadlines, those responsible, the tasks, among other information.

The interesting thing is that, although the roadmap is a guide, it is not a definitive document. In fact, it can be changed whenever necessary and according to the growth of the business.

Finally, it is worth saying that the roadmap is usually used when there are prospects for large investments. After all, it is precisely at these moments that many activities need to be carried out for the project to get off the ground and prosper.

Why make a roadmap

During the launch of a new product or a project, the person in charge needs to deal with various information and diverse involved, as well as with activities and deadlines.

It is the equivalent of a soap opera director who knows he must reach a final episode and, therefore, is based on a script so that everything goes as expected.

The roadmap, therefore, aims to synchronize different views and thus answer important questions about the organization or evolution of the business, such as:

  • Where are we currently?
  • Where do we want to go?
  • How will we get there?

With that, the map helps to prioritize and the add maximum value to the business during the process, in addition to measuring results and ensuring that all actions are carried out.

In summary, the roadmap is important for:

  • align stakeholder expectations regarding the future of the product or project;
  • keep the business focused and obtain internal support for the execution of the project;
  • indicate the activities, resources and those involved in the project;
  • define the necessary steps with the lowest possible cost to make the project feasible;
  • validate and add value to each stage before proceeding to the next stage.

Know the roadmap types

As the roadmap is a guide for a project, its final format is directly linked to the particularities of that project that will be carried out.

As such, it is not possible to create a definitive list of all existing roadmap types. However, here are some examples of cases where a roadmap can make all the difference.

Software roadmap

This is an area where the use of roadmaps is quite common. After all, developing software is a very complex and detailed task, which involves different people, knowledge and processes.

In general, a roadmap of the type part of a analyze to raise the needs of the market and, thus, define the requirements and feasibility of the project.

Then, based on the lessons learned, a product description and its architecture so that development can begin. Finally, there is a period of testing and adjustments so that the software can finally be launched on the market.

Technological roadmap

Technological development occurs with increasing speed. Therefore, companies need to develop the ability to adapt quickly. This is true for businesses that operate directly in the technological market as well as for others.

Thus, when the company needs to achieve a goal in the long term, the technological roadmap is an extremely important tool. With it, it is possible to apply the technology correctly and strategic, which is crucial in these cases. After all, we are talking about technology and, therefore, something that is still very new and unknown.

The roadmap, therefore, will help with both technical issues and the strategic objectives with which the technology must meet.

Coaching roadmap

The roadmap can also be used as a personal development tool. Again, it needs to be tied to a goal so that there is more clarity on how to achieve it.

In this way, the coaching roadmap starts from the current scenario in which the person is and outlines activities that need to be carried out in order for them to get where they want to be.

Thus, he can point out the actions, changes and behaviors necessary to achieve the determined objective.

Tips for building a roadmap

1. Define strategic objectives

A roadmap needs to start from a strategic objective. After all, it is precisely this objective that will guide all other information on the map.

It is important to say that a strategic objective is different from something generic like “selling more”. Think that goals like conquering new markets or gaining notoriety, for example, lead to an increase in profitability. However, they consist of completely different paths.

Therefore, it is essential that this objective is clearly defined. Otherwise, the entire map will be supported by an activity that will not lead the company to growth.

2. Discover the problems and define the product vision

To be useful, a product needs solve a problem of a group of people. Therefore, launching a new product requires understanding what this problem will be solved.

That done, it is necessary to combine the needs of the customers with the objectives of the company to arrive at the “product vision”, that is, the idealization what the product must be / do to be successfully launched on the market.

Thus, it is essential to carry out market researchhere to understand consumer trends and the behavior of your audience. Thus, the roadmap will be drawn based on data, and not just on guesswork and intuitions.

3. Estimate the time and resources needed

Every project needs a resource forecast for it to be made possible. Thus, it is essential to define who will be responsible for each of the activities, how long it will take to develop and what investments will be made over the period.

With this, you avoid any task being left out or delayed due to lack of planning or, even worse, because there is no more money to perform it.

4. List and prioritize features

When we talk about something new, it is common to have thousands of ideas. However, it is necessary to maintain the focus and consistency so that planning is followed.

After identifying whether the product or project concept is viable, list all the features it should contain. Then, review the list and prioritize what will bring the most return to the business.

With the roadmap, the product will be developed step by step based on these priorities that were listed. Thus, with each stage test, it will be possible to assess, understand whether they make sense and to improve or discontinue them.

5. Review the roadmap constantly

As we said, the roadmap is not immutable. Rather, it should be reviewed and enhanced as the project develops.

If the new features of the product did not meet expectations or the project did not reach its objectives, see what can be improved. Still, in cases of consecutive failures, it may be that the best thing to do is eliminate the product for good.

Finally, know that the roadmap must continue even after launch of the first version on the market. After all, the product can continue to evolve in the market by incorporating new features, and now you have the opportunity to evaluate customer feedback.

The roadmap is an important tool for guide projects and launches of companies of all segments and sizes. After all, it works as a roadmap that lists stages, investments, activities and those involved in that project, all linked to a strategic objective and within a timeline.

Thus, a roadmap only makes sense if the company has very clear objectives. Otherwise, you will waste resources and time performing activities that will get you nowhere. Keep in mind that to get results, you need to prioritize. And that will only happen once the company’s goals are set and monitored constantly.

If you find it difficult to set goals suitable for your business, don’t worry! We created a free stuff that will help you with this task from the OKR methodology. Access the guide now and see how to set goals that connect to your business strategies.