GTM Backlog Prioritization

Our customer’s voices need to be heard and need to be reflected in the Product and Engineering decisions that we make. In an effort to bring this to the forefront, we will use the following process to identify the highest priorities of our customers as they pertain to our internal initiatives and strategic goals, and ensure that these priorities are then weighted in the overall product roadmap and Job Fair decision making. This process is the responsibility of the go-to-market teams. In particular, account teams should feel accountable for bringing any and all product feedback forward and ensuring this feedback is accurately and completely conveyed.

Process

  1. Product Gaps - CEs/TAs, in conjunction with their partner AEs, identify product gaps and feature requests from their customers. These gaps should then be indicated as Salesforce Product Gaps using the standard Product Gap submission process. This should be done, as accurately as possible, for every currently unsupported feature that your customers are interested in and could impact our ability to sell to and expand with them. Submitted Product Gaps will continue to be reviewed by the Product teams, added to backlogs, and kept up to date by the responsible members of Product and Engineering.
  2. Analysis - The data produced by the Product Gaps submissions are reviewed, primarily using the Salesforce dashboards and reports found here and here. This analysis results in a ‘Top 10’ list of the most important GTM Product Gaps. The list will be created by the GTM TPM (currently Andrew Norrish) alongside GTM, Product, and Engineering leadership. The following metrics are the primary contributors to Product Gap priority. Gaps that rank highly among all of these individual metrics are the ranked highest overall.
    • Impacted ARR - What is the total impact to ARR of the opportunities affected by the Product Gap? What is the impacted TAM? Have we lost deals as a result of the Product Gap?
    • Number of Impacted Accounts - How many accounts have indicated the desire for the Product Gap to be resolved?
    • Impact on Strategic Accounts - Are Strategic Accounts impacted by the Product Gap? What is the extent of this Strategic impact?
    • Product Gap Priority - Are a significant number of impacted accounts indicating the gap as P0, suggesting that the opp will fall through unless the gap is resolved?
  3. Alignment - Following the creation of the GTM ‘Top 10’ Product Gaps list, the list is reviewed with Product and Engineering against the currentl roadmap and Job Fair projects. In the overall greenlighting process for Job Fair, projects that resolve Product Gaps in the ‘Top 10’ list will be heavily weighted.
  4. Resolution - Once on the overall Job Fair board and Product Roadmap, resolution of the Product Gaps will follow standard engineering processes. After being resolved and released, the resoponsible Product/Engineering members will update the resolved Product Gaps, and the next highest priority Product Gap will take its place in the GTM ‘Top 10’ list.

FAQ

Why do we use Product Gaps when most of the Engineering work is managed in GitHub? How will we keep this information up to date.

Product Gaps are pivotal to us collecting account, opportunity, and revenue information that can’t be found in GitHub. It is the account teams’ responsibility to ensure their accounts are flagged for all of the correct Product Gapts. It is the Engineering TPM’s responsibility for managing Product Gaps after they are created, making sure they are up-to-date, and ensuring there is linking between the Product Gaps and their associated GitHub Issues. This will provide improved visibility into the status of each Product Gap’s resolution, while allowing for continued analysis of impacted customers and revenue.

What happens to Product Gaps that aren’t selected for the GTM ‘Top 10’ List?

Product Gaps not selected as the highest current GTM priority will still be reviewed by PMs and added to the backlog. Being selected for the ‘Top 10’ list simply conveys the priority to Product and Engineering, greatly increasing the likelihood of that project being selected and the urgency with which those projects will be addressed. Also, the ‘Top 10’ list is fluid as Product Gaps are addressed, so gaps that aren’t currently on the list may be on the list in the future.

I have concerns with the current ‘Top 10’ list or the process we are following. What do I do?

Please provide that feedback in #wg-backlog-prioritization and tag the GTM TPM (Andrew Norrish).