How to create a Releases timeline roadmap

Jana Jiraskova
Written by Jana Jiraskova
Updated

 

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Plan and communicate when different releases will be worked on. This visualization is ideal for planning outputs and milestones for your products with clear timeframes.


In this article:

 

How to create a Releases timeline roadmap

Create your roadmap

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  1. Navigate to your Roadmap board.
  2. From the drop-down menu, select Create Roadmap.

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  1. Select Releases timeline roadmap from the left menu.
  2. Click Choose roadmap.

Add releases to your roadmap

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  1. Click the blue button to display a list of your releases. Click on a release to add it to the roadmap.
  2. Click onto a blank space on the roadmap to create a search bar. Click the name of an existing release to add it to your roadmap. If the release already has a designated timeframe, you can keep that timeframe or update it.
  3. Click onto a blank space on the roadmap to create a search bar. Write the name of a new release and click Create to create a new release with the specified timeframe.

 

You can also assign a timeframe to a release by clicking on that release's name, whether it's from a release column or from the releases menu on the right sidebar:

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Configure release status and visibility

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  1. Click on a downward facing caret to reveal underlying features and subfeatures attached to a release.
  2. Click on the flag on the right side of a release card to adjust the status of the release. Note: this will not impact the feature status of any underlying feature cards.
  3. Click the ・・・menu and select Hide to prevent contributors and viewers from seeing this card. You can choose to reveal hidden cards via your Settings menu if you wish.
  4. Click the ・・・ menu and select Remove from roadmap to remove the release from your roadmap. This action will not delete the release object, or impact the relationship between your release and any underlying features.

Rearrange release timeframe and order

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  1. Drag and drop the ends of each release card to adjust the start and stop dates of the timeframe field.
  2. Drag and drop release cards to adjust the order in which they are displayed.
  3. Drag and drop a release card to automatically update its timeframe field.

Align features under a release

 

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The Releases timeline roadmap makes it easy to align the timeframe of your individual features with the timeframe of your overall release. 

If a feature associated with a release has a timeframe outside the date range of the release, the roadmap will display an overlap, indicated with a transparent background and a dashed outline.

To address an overlap:

  1. Adjust the timeframe of the release by double-clicking on the overlap or dragging and dropping the end of the release to align with the outlying feature.
  2. Adjust the timeframe of the feature by dragging and dropping the feature along the timeframe, or clicking on the feature to edit the date field.

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  1. If a feature does not have its own timeframe, it will display transparently on the roadmap.
  2. Hovering over the feature will reveal a calendar icon. Click on the calendar icon to assign the release's timeframe to the feature.
  3. To remove a feature's timeframe, click • on a feature, then select Clear timeframe.

Features with assigned timeframes can be dragged and dropped into the same line:

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Add milestones to your roadmap

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  1. Click above the top of your roadmap to place a milestone. Adjust the date via the drop-down calendar field if necessary.
  2. When adjusting a release's timeframe, a guideline will appear when the timeframe approaches near a milestone.

How to organize your Releases timeline roadmap

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  1. Click Settings to open up the configuration menu.
  2. Select Swimlanes to organize your roadmap horizontally.
  3. Toggle Time horizons to display your features organized into broader time horizons.
  4. Select Feature visualization to decide whether timeframes represent duration or end date.
  5. Toggle Effort to display story points on each feature card.
  6. Toggle Owner to display the owner's avatar on each feature card.
  7. Scale and Enterprise plans: Toggle Objectives to display any objectives associated with that feature.
  8. Toggle User impact score to display the user impact score of a feature on its card.
  9. Toggle Tags to display associated tags of a feature on its card.
  10. Scale and Enterprise plans: Toggle Enable dependencies to monitor your delivery process for possible conflicts.
  11. Toggle Show subfeatures to display associated subfeature cards.
  12. Toggle Show hidden cards to display feature and subfeature cards which have been manually hidden from contributors.


Change timeline cadence

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  1. Click the cadence menu next to Settings.
  2. Select the desired structure: Weekly, Monthly or Quarterly.

Add customizable swimlanes

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  1. Click Settings to open up the configuration menu.
  2. Click the Swimlanes drop-down menu and select Customizable.
  3. Rename your default swimlane.
  4. Scroll down to click [+] to create another swimlane.
  5. Drag and drop releases into the desired swimlane.

How to display time horizons and feature visualizations

Visualize feature duration

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  1. Click the Settings menu in the top right corner.
  2. Under Feature Visualization Settings, select how you want to display features under objectives. Select Duration to visualize feature duration or Flat list to show features without communicating their timeframes.
  3. This will round up specific dates on your roadmap into broader time horizons and automatically align your cards into the correct column.
  4. Click Save roadmap in the top right corner before sharing your roadmap.

Display time horizons on your roadmap

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Note: Turning on time horizons is only a change in visualization. It won't affect the timeframes you've assigned to your features.
  1. Click the Settings menu in the top right corner.
  2. Under Timeline Settings, toggle on Time horizons. This will round up specific dates on your roadmap into broader time horizons, and automatically align your cards into the correct column.
  3. Select Duration to visualize duration or End date to visualize anticipated release date.
  4. Click Save roadmap in the top right corner before sharing your roadmap.

When time horizons are turned on, dragging and dropping a feature around your roadmap will automatically update that feature's timeframe.

 

How to zoom into your Releases timeline roadmap

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In the bottom right corner of any timeline roadmap, you will see -100%+ indicating the current level of granularity. Click the minus button to zoom out and click the plus button to zoom in.

If using a trackpad-enabled device, you can zoom in and out of a timeline roadmap by pinching.

 

How to share and export your Releases timeline roadmap

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  1. After making any configuration changes, click Save roadmap. You will see a confirmation once your roadmap changes have been saved, and the Save button will read Share.
  2. Click Share to configure your roadmap sharing settings.
  3. Click Print to print your roadmap.
  4. Click Export to image to generate a PNG of your roadmap. Specify the relevant date range and click Export.

When to use a Releases timeline roadmap


Releases timeline roadmaps are good for:

  • Creating a low-maintenance tactical roadmap to track progress against important deadlines. Changing the timeframe of a release will dynamically update the timeframe for its associated features - no need to fine-tune every underlying feature.
  • Scheduled releases (e.g. release objects like "October" or "Q1").

Releases timeline roadmaps might not be good for:

  • Giving big audiences the Big Picture about your vision. If you're trying to convey why you're building certain features, or how your upcoming releases will contribute to your company's success, consider an Objectives timeline roadmap.
  • Continuous feature release processes. Consider the Release plan roadmap (high level), a Feature timeline roadmap (granular), or a Kanban roadmap (status-based).

 

Learn more about using Releases timeline roadmaps

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