Everyone needs to know something from the PM

Product Manager: Get yourself out of the weeds

As a PM, you’re not only leading a product – you’re also in charge of a process for getting things shipped. That means doing both the fun stuff of figuring out what you should build, but also being part-time Project Manager, ensuring that “trains run on time”.

You need to track progress, manage scope and communicate with Support, Marketing, Sales and Execs, so they know what’s going on.

Efficiency-minded as PMs are, you’ve probably tried at least one of these things to keep people updated about your status and progress:

  • Create wiki pages with updates for the rest of the company, only to realize that’s where information goes to die… No one from outside of tech wants to go into Confluence or JIRA, and when they do, they can’t find or understand anything in there
  • Subscribe people to JIRA changes notifications so they know when there are updates, but they complain that they’re too frequent and can’t keep up, so they ignore them
  • Send JIRA notifications to Slack instead, and carefully set up which statuses to send over… but then stuff still gets lost among the 100 different things that are happening there every day
  • Create a dashboard, custom board or integration with a roadmapping tool… but these solutions are often awkward and expensive. They’re meant for different use cases, they charge you by the user and people forget to go there, and you’re likely to hear… “I don’t want to log in to yet another app”.

This gets you to a point where you know that simple notifications don’t work, putting in the effort to create status and progress docs or wikis isn’t worth it, and people won’t likely go into apps you set up for them.

If you don’t keep them updated, they’ll ask

But you also know that you must have some kind of process to keep them on the same page, or you’ll be bombarded with questions all the time…

“Is that bug fixed yet?”

“How far along are we on My Pet Feature?”

“Is the release still on for Tuesday?”

“What was on our last release?”

“What did you guys work on last week?”

So you resort to what everyone does:

  • You schedule one (or two, or three…) regular status meetings with other teams
  • You copy and paste info from JIRA into email reports with just the right information that you know people need (and will actually read)
  • You send out email or Slack announcements when there are new releases

And although these can do the trick, they suck hours of your time every single month. Plus, you still have to prepare the meetings and remember to create the reports and announcements – so you add even more context-switching and responsibilities to your already overburdened head.

You wish you could have more time for research, strategy, talking to customers, or even just focusing on a spec without being interrupted, but by now you’ve accepted that all this busy work is part of the job, right?

Well, screw that.

It’s time to spend your time on more valuable tasks

Imagine everyone simply had the info they need from you, at the cadence that makes sense for them. They’d be happily in the loop, and you… well, what could you do with the extra time of not having to run status meetings and cobble together reports and announcements?

That’s exactly what Underway lets you do. By getting data from JIRA, you can set up great-looking, automated status and progress updates with a human touch for the people you want, without them having to go into a new tool. Here’s the gist of how it works:

  1. You connect your JIRA account and projects to Underway
  2. You choose the type of report, schedule and recipients
  3. And you’re done! They’ll now get the reports delivered to their inbox without skipping a beat

But really, the secret sauce is in the little details we’ve built in to make life easier for you and your stakeholders:

Send the right information to the right people

Send the right info to the right people Choose from our great-looking and readable reports that let you answer the most common types of questions you get:

  • The status of your work in progress
  • What you’ve completed recently
  • The status of your upcoming releases
  • What you’ve shipped recently

Choose the update frequency that makes sense for your stakeholders

Choose the update frequency that makes sense for your stakeholders Choose the right audience and the right frequency for each update. Schedule reports to go out daily, weekly, biweekly or monthly. Send them in the morning or just before the end of the day. And if you need to let people know as soon as there’s a release, you can use “just released” notifications.

No need to ask people to log in to yet another app

Magic links avoid having to login We cache data from JIRA and all links are magic. This way, recipients can read more about a release, or feature without having to login anywhere. Links expire after 3 weekdays. It’s simple and saves you money – less JIRA or Confluence licenses for people that don’t really need to go there.

Review and customize your updates, before they go out

Review and customize your reports before sending them Sometimes you don’t want full automation, we get it. Which is why you can:

  • Set up reports to only go out if (and when) you approve them
  • Customize the intro to the report, to add any important updates or soften the blow when there are bad news

Let people see your release schedule right from their calendar app

Release schedule right from their calendar app Share a calendar feed with past and upcoming releases so others can see exactly when your releases are happening (and what’s going to be in them). Release dates come from JIRA, so no need to update 2 or 3 different apps. Sanity!

Write non-technical release notes that stakeholders actually read

Rich release notes Share friendly, non-technical release notes that stakeholders actually read. You can use emojis, GIFs, and other attachments to make your content more engaging. But even if you don’t do this, we’ve got you covered: stakeholders will be able to see a changelog with all features grouped by type and showing their current status.


Think of Underway as your tactical communications engine. It’s not Yet Another Tool that you or your stakeholders are supposed to learn and spend time on. Our goal is the exact opposite – Underway’s there to help you save time on the day-to-day, routine stuff so you can use it for what’s most important: figuring out how to make your own products more successful.


Pricing

Flat & Simple

29$/month

Underway comes with batteries included:

  • Unlimited reports
  • Unlimited products
  • JIRA integration
  • Release calendar feeds
  • Rich release notes
  • File attachments

Have questions? Let us know


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