Have you ever found yourself cursing your phone when the functions become increasingly sluggish after every new model launch? This is because companies like Apple and Samsung make sure their products are designed to best align with the brand-new software update. While it might seem like a simple market strategy to get people talking about the newest updates, the reality of launching products that require software and hardware elements is that it is a very intricate process.
Launching a new product is an exciting, challenging, and multi-pronged task that requires collaboration, communication, and extreme attention to detail across all departments involved. For instance, consider that electronic companies have both hardware and software to roadmap, making for an increased workload and a more robust product strategy. The device itself is only manufactured once, but the software continues to receive updates for months and years to come.
Let’s discuss four key reasons why a visual roadmap template can help electronic manufacturers master their product strategy from pre-launch to launch day and post-launch debriefing:
- Roadmapping the Hardware
- Roadmapping the Software
- Reviewing Data Insights
- Collaborating Across Departments
Because of the complexities that can arise when creating hardware and software for a new product line, a comprehensive product roadmapping tool is essential for electronic manufacturers to keep their product development teams on track for a successful product launch.
Roadmapping the Hardware
When it comes to creating a new electronic device, two parts come together as a whole: hardware (the device itself) and software (the device’s operating system). Planning and building a new product’s hardware requires a clear roadmap to deliver a product that aligns with the company’s goals for the specific model since the software can be updated multiple times within the same hardware over time.
Walk your mind into an Apple store for a moment and visualize the many models of MacBooks, iMacs, iPhones, and iPads you see on display. Each of these models is considered hardware that essentially hosts various software depending on the product line and its capabilities. There are phones, laptops, and desktop computers that are similar in appearance but different in size, bandwidth, and other specifications that tailor each model to suit a certain purpose for the consumer.
As you can imagine, managing the product development process for a new line of electronic hardware requires a high-level understanding of each product line’s purpose and differentiators that make it appealing to a target audience. After all, consumers are always on the hunt for the latest and greatest electronic devices for talking, gaming, working, and more.
Gocious product roadmap software allows manufacturers to plan product launches 5, or 10 years into the future based on their goals and how much time it can take to source parts required to complete the hardware. Because of how quickly timelines can change when relying on components and materials, product managers can benefit from the agility that product roadmap management software gives them to make adjustments to milestones as needed and in real-time.
Using Gocious PRM software to roadmap hardware launches into the far future also gives marketing teams access to data and resources that they can leverage to plan new product launch strategies in advance with the help of product engineers, developers, and people from other relevant departments.
Roadmapping the Software
In the electronics industry, software updates happen often and quickly, especially in the age of IT which gets smarter and more agile every day. To stay on top of ever-changing software capabilities and functionality, manufacturers can create shorter-term roadmaps for software so they can constantly be planning new software releases to keep up with customer demands.
Another reason software gets updated at such a fast pace is because electronic manufacturers are consistently in competition with themselves, forever revamping their software versions to come up with bigger and better capabilities. Gocious makes this competitive analysis easy by allowing teams to store and visualize internal and external competitor products.
Employing the right PRM system to keep software development on track allows manufacturers to identify shorter milestones for software updates, which could be scheduled to happen every 6 months, annually, or every three years. Product managers can even adjust their strategy based on circumstances, new developments or recognized vulnerabilities without having to sift through piles of product manuals and specification documents.
A good example of utilizing short-term software roadmapping is the development of cybersecurity software, as anti-virus programs designed to block hackers require constant updates and configurations at a moment’s notice to keep up with the latest cybersecurity threats. No matter the scale, short-term software product launches can be roadmapped and monitored all on one handy dashboard thanks to innovative PRM tools by Gocious.
Electronic manufacturers rely on performance data and consumer feedback to make sure every new product line leverages those insights to work towards creating “the next big thing” in tech. With Gocious, the Feature Library provides a visual map of component use across a product portfolio, identifying the progression from low-end models to high-end models and if any gaps lie between that could be translated into foundations for new products.
You can also record product analytics on Gocious, boosting opportunities for all product teams to view and share marketing research insights, which help inform new ideas for software and hardware updates in the future since the takeaways are accessible within one user-friendly dashboard.
Collaboration and the Ability to Pivot
Much like hardware is nothing without the software required to operate it, a successful product launch is nothing without the right team of like-minded individuals working together to bring a product vision to reality. With Gocious, every department is involved in the product roadmapping process thanks to live chat functionality and a central platform on which product engineers, marketing managers, and even accountants can easily share documents.
Accessible data leads to better decision-making, which is done more efficiently when everyone has eyes on all the relevant product information. Giving product teams room to collaborate on product plans is an efficient way to ensure that everyone is on the same page regarding a new product’s roadmap from concept to completion.
A Visual Product Roadmap for Manufacturers
Electronic manufacturers are constantly coming up with software updates and high-tech hardware to keep up with our digitally-dominated society’s demands as consumers. From compact laptops and take-anywhere tablets to professional-grade smartphone cameras and on-device editing capabilities, electronics are ever-evolving.
Product managers can streamline their multi-faceted product planning and development process for hardware and software by investing in Gocious’s user-friendly PRM software that enforces transparency and promotes efficient product portfolio management. If you’re in the electronics industry and are ready to accomplish your business goals, schedule a demo with Gocious today.