Editing/FY2016-17Q2/Planning

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FY2016-17Q2 refers to October-December 2016.

Proposed Timeline for finalizing Editing Department Q2 goals[edit]

  1. Trevor announces start of process
  2. Aug 16-18: Joel and Trevor make first draft of SOP
  3. Aug 19: Managers review and refine SOP
  4. Aug 22-26: Managers execute the SOP
  5. Aug 31: Leaders have Quarterly Goal Planning Jamboree
  6. Sep 2: Publish first draft of Department team goals

Async steps, or steps we still need to integrate:

  1.  ? : coordinate with other Departments
  2.  ?: finalize for quarter
  3.  ?: Do next quarter's planning
  4.  ?: review after end of quarter
  5. Sep/Oct: retrospect on the process

Who: Editing Department Directors, Managers, Product Managers, Designers and Lead Engineer

DRAFT Standard Operating Procedure[edit]

This process will enable you to select quarterly goals and narrow them down to a focus goal to publicly communicate and track.

  1. Carry over goals from last quarter: Anything that didn't get completed from the previous quarter needs to be continued or stopped.
  2. Add New goals for this quarter: Select work that is called for in both the annual plan and roadmaps of products your team is responsible for.
  3. Check Capacity: Reject goals that will take more than half of your team's capacity, starting with the lowest priority first.
  4. Check with Team: Discuss the goals with your team to ensure alignment and collaboratively make improvements.
  5. Get feedback at Jamboree: Attend an Editing Goals Jamboree meeting to receive and provide feedback on goals, including which to focus on. Resolve conflicts.
  6. Check dependencies: Confirm agreement for any prerequisite work your objectives will require other teams to do.
  7. Publish a draft: Fill out your portion of the "Editing FY2016/17 Quarterly Goals" spreadsheet by August 27th.

Details[edit]

Are you working on the most important thing for your team?[edit]

  • Is there something in the Annual Plan or your Roadmap that you need to start ASAP? Is it on your Q2 plan? If not, what's blocking it?
  • Do you have some new work that isn't on any plan? What is the case for doing this ahead of previously planned work? Do you have new information that wasn't available when the old planning happened?

What is your capacity?[edit]

How are you determining your team's capacity? Some methods include:

  • Number of tasks completed last quarter
  • Number of story points completed last quarter
  • Adjusting last quarter's capacity for staffing changes, vacations, and interruptions like Wikimania.
  • If you have more work planned than capacity available, how are you cutting stuff?

Syncing with other lists[edit]

How much work should you put into keeping your Quarterly Goals, Roadmap, and Annual Plan in sync?

  • Is anyone going to be affected if you cut something from your Roadmap or the Annual Plan? Are people expecting it? What is the best way to communicate the change? Is keeping it on the list providing any value?
  • Is the item you are cutting on somebody else's list? If so, discuss with them.
  • Is this on a product roadmap, or part of the annual plan? If so, [TBD]
  • Are you delivering the next most valuable thing on your lists?
  • Do you have a long-term plan that is being compromised? vs Do you have a long-term plan that is obsolete and should be updated/trimmed
  • What other lists are you responsible for? Who is the audience for them? If you can't update them, can you replace them with redirects or eliminate them covered?
  • Have you re-checked your capacity?

Syncing with other teams[edit]

  • Have you shared your plans as early as possible with teams you are dependent on?
  • If they don't do what you need in time, what are you going to do about it?
  • Have you thought of all of the teams you need something from?
  • Is anybody else's work dependent on item? If so, discuss with them.
  • Is this on a product roadmap, or part of the annual plan? If so, [TBD]

Documents[edit]

  1. Editing Department FY2016-17 Quarterly Goals
  2. Product Roadmaps
  3. Annual Plan
    1. A copy of relevant goals is stored in the at end of quarterly goals spreadsheet
    2. Full Plan

Objectives[edit]

What are we trying to accomplish with quarterly planning this quarter, and with an SOP?

  1. At the individual level (Team participants and managers)
    1. Make quarterly planning less unfun
      1. Provide emotional payoff to work from last Q.
        1. Work isn't wasted for audience: Sense that the planning and reporting work is being seen at all, is being seen fairly, and leads to reasonable consequences
        2. Work isn't wasted for me: I can re-use and build on it, and am not repeating myself
      2. Make it cheaper and less painful to do planning
        1. Reduce the blank-page pain of Qplanning
        2. Take away the mystery of the process.
        3. Build repeatable (cheaper) habits.
  2. At the team level
    1. Get more value out of the old planning work - we aren't smarter, and only know a little more, so that work should still be mostly valid.
      1. Follow up on existing work, don't re-invent
      2. Existing plans and roadmaps should already be long-term, span quarters
        1. Shouldn't be very detailed in the far future, but more than nothing
        2. And work not completed should be pretty detailed already
      3. If we are changing from previous plan, need to communicate that
  3. At the Department level
    1. Become more realistic about planning
      1. Force us to confront stuff that doesn't work - fix it or flag it
      2. Get more stuff on
      3. Don't commit to do too much.
        1. Commit to work representing about half of the team's capacity under ideal conditions.
      4. Use reporting (n.b. Phlogiston reporting to reality check.  Collab example)
    2. Coordinate with other teams' plans
      1. Know what each other are doing
      2. Get peer feedback on plans
        1. Get peer input on priorities
        2. Get peer input on best approaches, previous efforts, etc.
      3. Resolve dependencies between teams
  4. At the Foundation level
    1. Correlate to Annual Plan
      1. Comply with rules for planning Column B - show which Annual Goal relates.  (why?)
      2. follow the annual plan?  (i.e., would pass a cross-check)
      3. Reuse the annual plan so as to reduce new planning efforts
    2. Build trust with movement
      1. Demonstrate that we are able to meet our commitments
      2. Demonstrate that we give them advance notice and consultation if we need to change those commitments.
      3. Bring and keep Roadmaps current and relevant.
    3. Be on time syncing with other teams.

Why this won't work (and what to do about that)[edit]

  • work is too complicated or changes too frequently to fit either the quarterly plan model or this SOP
    • Work is not a linear, fungible quantity (e.g., do 20 hours of development and it's done) but instead can be:
      • Non-linear/unpredictable
      • Dependent on other teams/other parts of the WMF
      • Dependent on non-software factors such as community acceptance