Spotlight on Spira 6.5 - Portfolio & Program Management Enhancements

April 23rd, 2020 by inflectra

As we get ready for the upcoming release of SpiraTest, SpiraTeam, and SpiraPlan, we'd like to introduce some of the new functionality that will be available in this release. This release includes two main features, plus lots of smaller enhancements and bug fixes. The two main marquee features are Portfolio and Program Management Dashboards, and new additional views of the release and task pages, including a Gantt view that will enhance our support for traditional waterfall and hybrid projects.

Portfolio & Program Management

SpiraPlan v6.5 includes a new type of workspace, called a portfolio. A portfolio is a collection of programs, which in turn can have a collection of products. Previously SpiraPlan only offered products and programs, with no way to group and view multiple programs. In addition, the navigation bar includes a new "enterprise" view that will give you a system-wide view of the different products.

When you click on a portfolio in the navigation bar you will see the new portfolio dashboard. It includes new widgets that display the overall completion and progress of the portfolio based on how many requirements in the portfolio have been completed, as well as a breakdown by program. The dashboard also includes new widgets that show you the relative size of the programs that comprise the portfolio and a risk widget that shows you the top risks in the portfolio, sorted by greatest exposure first.

In addition, there is a new schedule widget that lets you see the hierarchy of programs, products and releases in the portfolio in a simple, color-coded GANTT chart. Each bar in the chart represents a program, product, release or sprint/phase. The bar includes a progress indicator that visually shows you what % of the item has been completed to date.

We have added similar functionality at the program and product levels, with additional widgets added to the program and product dashboards for overall completion, progress by product / release, relative size, and a GANTT schedule view. The program dashboard now has three views (Dev, Test, General) similar to that available at the product level.

These new widgets are available in both SpiraTeam and SpiraTest as well as SpiraPlan.

In the future we shall be adding additional reporting widgets to the program level as we continue to build out the three new views.

New Enterprise-Level View

In addition, we have added a new top-down "enterprise" view for SpiraPlan that lets you see all of the portfolios, programs, and risks in a single view across the entire system.

This lets you view the progress of all your teams in a single place. In the future we will be adding additional widgets to the enterprise dashboard as well as adding additional tools and features to assist resource managers and staffing/training departments.

New Release GANTT and PERT Views

The new version is not just about dashboards however. The releases page now includes a new set of columns that let you see the %complete for a release or sprint (by requirement) as well as display the number of requirements and the sum of the total story points estimated for the release or sprint.

For our customers working with more traditional methodologies, we have added a GANTT chart that lets you see the hierarchy of releases and phases in a graphical view, plotted against the dates along the x-axis.

Another useful view that is now available is a hierarchical PERT chart that shows you the decomposition of releases, phases and sprints in a top-down tree diagram:

These new views are available in both SpiraTeam and SpiraPlan, so if you are still using SpiraTest, please contact our sales team and we'd be happy to discuss upgrade options.

New Task GANTT View

The task management module in SpiraTeam and SpiraPlan lets you have both a grid and board view of tasks, and now with v6.5 we have added a GANTT chart option as well:

This view is similar to the GANTT chart available on the releases page, but in this view it can be drilled-down one additional level, from the releases and phases to the individual tasks in each release or phase.

My Page Changes

In developing v6.5, our team found one major usability issue that we have corrected. When you have a large number of products and programs, the existing My Assigned Products widget quickly became unmanageable, with hundreds of products listed. So in v6.5 we have replaced this widget with two new widgets:

The Recent Products widget will now display the five most recent products that you have accessed, and the Recent Artifacts widget displays the last five artifacts (requirements, test cases, incidents, tasks, etc.) that you have opened. We can't wait to upgrade our internal production instance for this new feature alone!!

We hope you enjoy the new features in v6.5, we're looking forward to hearing your feedback.

spotlight roadmap portfolio management program management gantt chart

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