Posts Tagged Big Visual Indicators
Teams track progress in many different ways. Most commonly I see variations on a burn down chart. But if you’re finding that a little bit boring, then there’s no reason not to get creative to illustrate progress.
Here’s an idea from a team working their way through every country in the world. Each country gets coloured in as it is completed. Stakeholders can see the progress as it happens, and also whether the country they are interested in has been completed yet. If you click on the image below, the animation shows the progress over a few weeks.
Spotted: LP Content Desk
At Lonely Planet, it’s not just software development teams that use big visual indicators. In this hack, the guidebook commissioning team wanted to be very clear just what they were working on at any given time.
Here you can see what’s in pre-planning, currently being contracted, which books authors are researching and writing now, what’s in editing, at the printer and has just hit the shops. Also visible at a glance is what is blocked right now – there’s a special naughty corner for books that can’t be researched due to civil unrest. No authors in Libya right now!
I particularly like the little magnetic book covers that they use – visual language everyone involved in publishing can understand, and much more durable than paper and blue tack.
Thanks to Dave Carroll for this hack.
Spotted: LP Commissioning Editors
A self-serve training plan.
The team that I work with runs a complex process involving many steps that require specialized knowledge for each step. Their aim is to have everyone skilled up on all the steps, and avoid single points of failure. It was pretty hard for team members to know who knew what, and we needed to be sure when Christmas holidays came along that the few people left knew enough to keep the process rolling.
They came up with a visual to solve this. This grid lists all the steps in the process across the top, and all the members of the team down the side. A half circle means that person has learned the task, two half circles means that they know it well enough to teach someone else. And the little avatars across the top next to each step show who the expert is for that step – and therefore the best person to go to with questions.
As well as being a self-serve training plan – it’s easy to see what each person does and doesn’t know and therefore make sure they learn new steps – it also highlights areas of risk. In this picture we can see that the last step, with only one person knowing how to do it, shows up a pretty big risk if that person is away.
Below, you can see this “self serve university” at a massive scale. This time it covers more than 100 niche skills, and 80 people. The principle is the same: people can mark each skill with either “I know this skill”, “I want this skill” or “I can teach this skill”.
Spotted: SPP Content Desk, Telstra Contact Solutions