Strategy Centre

Contribute to the IRP Road Map

 
  
08 December 2017
  

Contribute to the IRP Road Map

All members of IRP World can enter suggestions on the IRP Road Map. This is made available so that IRP clients — particularly Ecommerce Managers — and Service Providers alike can have some real input into the features included in the IRP platform. IRP Account Managers especially will find the Road Map to be an invaluable means of influencing the feature content of the IRP platform.

The IRP Roadmap Feature Suggestion and Roadmap selection process has been recently updated to ensure prompt and clear communication on Feature Suggestions and associated development.

Whilst not all suggestions are guaranteed to be accepted, all are carefully scrutinised and considered as possible candidates by the IRP technical team. All input is taken seriously and in fact the IRP includes many features and enhancements that originated from the IRP Road Map.

The Road Map also provides IRP customers and Systems Integrators with an understanding of what features are due for inclusion in the next release of the IRP and when that release is scheduled to occur. In addition, you can view Release Notes for all current and previous releases of the IRP.

How to use the IRP Road Map

Using the Road Map is very straightforward. Using the tabs you can view, ‘like’ and comment on all suggestions currently in the system, enter new suggestions and find out which suggestions are scheduled for release — and on what date. You can also view the release history of both Patch and Full Releases and search for specific features across all previous releases.

Viewing suggestions on the IRP Road Map

When you first arrive at the Road Map home page, you will see the current list of feature suggestions, as shown in the screen capture below. The total number of suggestions is shown in parentheses:

IRP Road Map in the IRP World Resource Centre

At the top of the page you can use the following buttons:

  • Search for Feature Suggestions: Enter a term in the search box and click the Go button to locate any suggestions in the system that match your search criteria. In general you should do this before entering a new suggestion as it may already have been entered into the system by another IRP World member.
  • All Suggestions: Click this button at any time to take you back to the Road Map home page.
  • My Suggestions: If you have made any previous suggestions, you can click this button to view them.
  • {Your Organisation} Suggestions: Click this button to view all suggestions made by people within your organisation.
  • Advanced Filters: Click this link to filter your search results as follows:
    • All Statuses: Select the status of the suggestion by which to filter the results (All, New, Under Review, Not Approved, On Hold, Selected For Development, In Development). See below for an explanation of each status.
    • All Sections: Select the section that the suggestion relates to as a filter for the search results (All, Admin, B2B, Front End, Insights, Other, Stock Control, Tills).

You can also use the Sort By drop-down menu to sort the search results by Popularity, Date, Title or IRP Rating.

In the main grid showing the features, you can see the number of ‘likes’ that each feature has attracted on the right side of each row. This is one of the factors, in addition to the ones described in the Making Suggestions section below, that is taken into account when the IRP technical team is assessing the merits of each suggestion.

You can also see the status of each suggestion:

  • New: This is the default status of each suggestion before it has been assessed by the IRP technical team.
  • Under Review: This indicates that the IRP technical team is currently discussing and assessing the suggestion. If you created, liked or commented on a suggestion, you will receive an email notification when the status of a suggestion changes to Under Review.
  • Selected For Development: This indicates that the IRP technical team, having thoroughly analysed all aspects of the suggestion, has decided that it should move into the development schedule for incorporation in a future IRP release. If you created, liked or commented on a suggestion, you will receive an email notification when the status of a suggestion changes to Selected For Development.
  • In Development: This indicates that IRP developers are currently working on the suggestion and that, following rigorous testing procedures, it will soon be released. If you created, liked or commented on a suggestion, you will receive an email notification when the status of a suggestion changes to In Development.
  • On Hold: This indicates that, following review, the IRP technical team thinks that the suggestion is an excellent idea but that, because of the complexity of the job or the specific area of the IRP system that it affects, it cannot immediately be selected for development. The suggestion will be reviewed on a monthly basis with a view to it being included in a future development schedule. If you created, liked or commented on a suggestion, you will receive an email notification when the status of a suggestion changes to On Hold.
  • Not Approved: This indicates that, following review, the IRP technical team has decided that the suggestion is not a suitable candidate for inclusion in the IRP. If you created, liked or commented on a suggestion, you will receive an email notification when the status of a suggestion changes to Not Approved. The email will include an explanation as to why the suggestion was rejected by the IRP technical team.

To view the details of each feature, click the plus sign on the left side of the row and the row will expand downwards (the row will also expand if you click on the number of ‘likes’). You will then see: a description of the suggested feature, a link through to the IRP World profile of the person who made the suggestion and a list of the people (if any) who ‘like’ the suggestion (also with links through to their IRP World profiles). You can also see the comments (if applicable) that any IRP World Member has made about the suggestion, including the date on which they made the comment and again with a link through to their profiles.

Also in the details section you have the opportunity to ‘like’ the suggestion yourself and to add any comments you may have:

IRP Road Map Comment Bar

Finally, you can use the Generate URL button to create a link for the suggestion that you can then use if you need to, for example if you wanted to make others within your organisation aware of the suggestion.

Making suggestions on the IRP Road Map

To enter your own suggestions on the IRP Road Map, click the Make A Suggestion tab:

IRP Road Map Make a Suggestion tab

The message at the top of the page informs you that you need to be an Accredited IRP User in order to make a suggestion. Depending on the company or partner organisation that you belong to, you may see other information in this section regarding how to become accredited, who else in your organisation is accredited and other such details.

Assuming you are suitably accredited, you can then type in a Title and Details for your suggestion, as shown in the screen capture above. You should provide as much detail as possible about the feature, or about the modification to an existing IRP feature.

As you can see in the screen capture, two of the key elements that you should include in your description are:

  1. How the suggestion will help to increase your sales.
  2. How the suggestion will decrease your costs through operational efficiency.

Including this information will greatly assist the IRP technical team in assessing the usefulness and general merits of the feature or modification.

You can also select the Section of the IRP that the suggestion relates to and, optionally, you can upload any relevant Images.

Finally click the Send as your Suggestion button to ensure that your suggestion is logged in the system. You will see a 'Thanks!' message.

Once your suggestion is in the system, the IRP technical team will carefully discuss and assess the suggestion and it will move through the statuses described previously. Note that if your suggestion duplicates or is a component of an existing suggestion, the technical team may decide to merge your suggestion with the existing ones. In such a scenario, if you created, liked or commented on the suggestion, you will receive an email notification to keep you updated.

Viewing suggestions that are in Development

You can find out which suggestions are currently in development and scheduled for release by clicking the tab on the right side of the screen — the total number of in-development features is shown in parentheses. You will then see the following information:

IRP Road Map In-Development Tab

At the top of the page you can see a link for IRP Release History. For more details about this, see the section below, Viewing IRP Release History

Below the link for IRP Release History you can see the date (subject to change) when the next Patch Release of the IRP is scheduled to occur and, for Full Releases, the quarter of the year in which it is scheduled to occur.

The details you can see in the main grid are as follows:

  • Job: The title of each development job.
  • Section: If selected by the user when he or she created the suggestion, this will indicate which section of the IRP the suggestion relates to.
  • Type: 'P' indicates that the feature is scheduled for inclusion in a Patch Release whereas 'F' indicates a Full Release.
  • Developer: An image of the developer who is working on the feature (available only to Systems Integrators, who can also click through to the Developer’s profile)
  • Complexity: A rating of the complexity of each feature (Standard, Moderate, Difficult or Very Complex).
  • Time Estimate: An estimate of the time required to fully develop and test the feature.
  • Likes: The number of ‘likes’ that each feature has attracted, which provides a rough gauge of its popularity. You can click this to see who has liked the feature.
  • Status: The status of the feature (Scheduled, In Development, Completed).
  • View: A link to view the details of the feature in a pop-up window.

Viewing IRP Release History

To view details of the features included in previous releases, click the link at the top of the 'In Development' tab called IRP Release History. You can then view the tabs shown in the screen capture below. You will then see the following page:

IRP Road Map Release History screen

As shown, you can view release history for Patch Releases and Full Releases. Using the drop-down list at the top of the screen you can select which Patch or Full Release to view. The top bar shows the date of release, the number of features in the release and the total time taken in developing and testing the release.

You can see the name of the feature, its category (Feature Enhancement or Bug Fix), the Developer (available only to Systems Integrators), the level of complexity, the time estimate and a link to View more details about each feature.

You can also look up a specific feature using the tab (not shown in the screen capture above) called Search Features. To use this, simply enter a relevant search term and click the magnifying glass icon to search for the feature:

IRP Road Map Search Bar

When results are returned, you can view details of the feature, including the date on which the released occurred, the name of the feature, the release version number and the type of release (Patch or Full). Systems Integrators can also see the Developer involved.

Help shape the future of IRP technology

The IRP World Road Map feature is one of the most useful release information and feedback tools made available by a technology company. Ecommerce Managers, IRP Account Managers and any IRP World Member have the opportunity to have a real influence on IRP technology. Furthermore, any member can see at a glance what is scheduled to appear in the next release and when it will be available.

For more encouragement to use this feature, see Make IRP Feature Suggestions work for you. All IRP World Members are strongly encouraged to make the most of this valuable resource.

Note: The original version of this article was published in September, 2016.

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