How To Use a Technology Roadmap Template

Technology Roadmap
technology roadmap, technology roadmap template, technology roadmap examples

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Title Tag: Using Technology Roadmap Templates 

How To Use a Technology Roadmap Template

Technology roadmaps are comprehensive plans for technological development at any enterprise. These explanatory visualizations should be easy for the intended audience to interpret. An extensive amount of planning should go into creating an accessible and informative technology roadmap. Once an enterprise has a sense of its present position and future goals, a planner should be prepared to plug this information into a technology roadmap template.

Start laying the groundwork for a new roadmap by determining the parameters of a plan. Assess present conditions in order to set reasonable and useful goals, establish a timeframe and identify milestones or key performance indicators. It can be helpful to look at a variety of technology roadmap examples during the planning phase to determine which designs or layouts are best suited for the approach you want to take. Here are a few general guidelines to help any enterprise create a plan that can be visually represented as a roadmap.

Conceptualize a Plan

In order for a roadmap to be effective, it must represent several dimensions of a plan. The most important steps in the early stages of planning are making sure that the focus and scope of the goals for the plan are suitable for a roadmap format. Keep in mind that this type of plan is intended for use as a broad, strategic overview and not as a day-to-day productivity tool for tracking progress in terms of smaller tasks or a backlog.

Think of roadmaps as visionary tools that unite several critical elements for setting and achieving practical goals. Here are a few vectors to keep in mind when preparing a technology roadmap:

  • Audience
  • Development goals
  • Departments or teams
  • Time scale
  • Milestones

It is a good idea to start the roadmap design process by identifying the intended audience of a particular plan. An internal map for executives or employees is likely to look very different than a roadmap for external stakeholders, such as corporate partners, customers or investors. A planner may want to make more than one roadmap to communicate effectively with internal and external audiences, even if some of the goals overlap. Some roadmaps are intended to structure collaborative efforts while other maps are intended to increase confidence and secure buy-ins.

No matter who a roadmap is intended for, these visualizations are almost always goal-oriented. Make sure that a plan accounts for primary goals, whether these pertain to product development, information technology infrastructure maintenance and upgrades, the implementation of security measures or other foci. Secondary considerations may or may not be accounted for on the roadmap, depending on the audience and the level of detail. An enterprise is likely to delegate responsibilities to specific groups or teams, and the primary actors should also be accounted for on a roadmap.

The other major element is the timeframe in which an enterprise seeks to achieve specific goals. Goals or themes and projected time are the two major axes of any technology roadmap. Milestones are used to track progress toward objectives and should be associated with dates or ranges of time. Meeting these smaller objectives or satisfying key performance indicators is crucial for remaining on track toward completing larger goals. In recent years, there has also been a significant amount of research into more flexible and iterative roadmap applications, such as how these plans can be implemented in the context of an agile environment.

Compare Roadmap Designs

Technology roadmap examples can be useful points of reference when considering potential layouts for a new document. Real-world roadmaps can be even more useful than customizable templates during the early planning stages. Even if the details of a plan do not correspond to your own goals, seeing the schematics of different maps may help you harness more of the potential of this projection method.

Roadmaps are used by leaders in many industries, from engineering to software development, IT and manufacturing. Consider recent roadmaps for a supply chain powered by artificial intelligence or for pharmaceutical manufacturing systems. Once you are ready to create your own map, you may want to refer to the extensive collections of templates created by companies that specialize in planning design.

Create a Roadmap

Unless you are a skilled designer or an enterprise has a dedicated design department, you may want to rely on roadmap templates. If you decide to start with very basic templates, look for a document that has rows for areas of focus and columns that correspond to a time frame. A growing number of services also specialize in helping planners create compelling visualizations of goals.

This brief overview addresses the major phases of creating a technology roadmap. Keep in mind that the planning stage is likely to take longer than deciding on a design, and that adjustments will continue after the initial roadmap is complete. It is a good idea to update these documents to keep departments or teams on track.



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