Starter roadmap

The starter roadmap is special. It lets you quickly sketch out your plans by dragging and dropping records onto the roadmap — and creates those records in the background, complete with dates and record relationships. So as you build a starter roadmap, you are also building out the data that will help you accomplish it.

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Create a starter roadmap

Navigate to Roadmaps > Starter to create a starter roadmap. When you first load a starter roadmap, it will populate with any existing records in your workspace — but if it's blank, do not worry. Creating data for your roadmap and in your Aha! account is as simple as dragging and dropping. 

First, select the type of starter roadmap you would like to build. You can build one around Releases, to show when you plan to complete work that relates to your strategy. Or you can build one around Features and master features, to show when you plan to complete work that relates to your strategy, organized by theme. The Features view will also show you your themed work in the context of releases.

Next, start dragging record cards from the righthand side of your screen onto your roadmap, either new cards from the Create new list, or existing records from the Use existing dropdowns. You can add the following record types to your starter roadmap: 

One way to populate this roadmap is to start with your strategy. Add your strategic goals, then the initiatives that will support them. Then work your way down to releases and master features — the containers for the work needed to accomplish your initiatives — and finish with features, the fundamental units of work your team will complete. 

To link records together, drop one inside the other. For example, if a release will support an initiative, drop your release inside the initiative bar. If you want to add features to your release, drop them inside the release bar. If these container records get to large, you can always click the little arrow in the upper left of the card to collapse it and hide all child records from view.

As you drag and drop records onto the roadmap, you are simultaneously creating and linking real data in your account. Changes made on the starter roadmap will be reflected throughout the Aha! application. For example, if you move a feature from one release to another, it will also move on the features board (Features > Board) and anywhere else the feature is displayed within a release. If you shift a release's dates on the starter roadmap, the release's release date will update. 

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Add record details

When you first add a record to the starter roadmap, you have a chance to give it a name.

The next time you click on the record, you will open up its detail drawer. From there, add any details you need to. You can choose to be thorough here and add descriptions, scores, attachments, assignees, and to-dos, or you can choose to build out a skeleton roadmap quickly and come back later for the details. 

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Understanding record type relationships

As you assemble your roadmap, it is important to understand the relationships that are being created when you drag and drop elements on the page.

  • When you add a goal, that goal will be linked to the workspace where the goal was added.
  • When you add an initiative or a release in a goal swim lane, the initiative or release will be linked to that goal.
  • When you add a feature to a release, that feature will be linked to that release.

However, features are not directly linked to a goal or initiative when you drag them onto the roadmap. This is done by design to provide teams with the flexibility to link features to different goals or initiatives rather than the release at large.

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Releases and features mode

Toggle between the Releases and Features modes to change the focus of the roadmap. The releases mode displays releases as bars on the roadmap — this is preferred if you want to focus on the timing and contents of your releases. The features mode is ideal if your plans are centered around master features (also called epics). In this mode, master features are shown as bars on the roadmap instead of releases, but you can still include release dates for context if you choose to by expanding the Release dates section. 

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In features mode, when you add a new master feature, it is automatically added to the first active release (or parking lot, if no active releases exist). If a feature is added to a master feature, that feature will be added to the same release as the one that is assigned to the master feature. If a feature is added on the roadmap without a corresponding master feature, the feature will be assigned to the first active release or parking lot.

The features mode also shows you a timeline of your releases. Any releases related to the features and master features on the roadmap can be shown in the Release dates bar. To enable the Release dates bar, navigate to Customize view > Show release dates.

Note: The following logic is applied when you move features and master features on the starter roadmap:

  1. When you move a master feature to a new workspace, this changes the release for the master feature but not the child features.
  2. When you move a feature from one master feature to another, the feature remains in its original release (and workspace).

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Additional options

The starter roadmap includes a variety of customization options so that you can craft the perfect visualization for your audience.

The More details button that appears when you hover on each bar of your roadmap can be used to customize the record. It includes three options:

  1. Edit name: Edits the name of the object that appears on the roadmap. This is not the actual name of the record. This provides flexibility on your records without modifying the actual name of the record.
  2. Hide from export: Keeps the object visual on the roadmap but it will be hidden when exporting as a PDF, image, or Aha! presentation.
  3. Remove from roadmap: Removes the object from the roadmap but does not delete it from the Aha! application. You can also remove a record from the roadmap by dragging it into the Drop here to remove from roadmap zone in the lower-right corner of the page.

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To adjust the time frame and the way that dates are represented on the roadmap, select the calendar icon. From there, you can adjust the calendar resolution to increase or decrease the granularity of the dates that appear on the roadmap (including quarters, months, weeks, days, or automatic). You can also choose the start and end dates for your roadmap.

If the Record progress setting is enabled for your workspace, you can visualize progress on your roadmap by enabling the Customize view > Show progress option.

Choose how you want colors to be displayed on the roadmap by setting the Customize view > Color bars by option.

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Share your starter roadmap

With your starter roadmap completed, you can easily share it with your stakeholders by selecting one of the export options under the More options button on the top right of the screen. 

Note: Use the Customize view dropdown to exclude a particular record type from appearing on an exported starter roadmap.

  • To fold your roadmap into a presentation, select Add to presentation. In your presentation you can select the report's update frequency.
  • To invite people outside of your Aha! account to view your roadmap, select Share as webpage
  • For a static version of your roadmap, select Save as image or Save as PDF.

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