Reflections on Summit 2016

The ThinkTilt team converged around a kitchen table in a small house in San Jose to plan their strategy Summit 2016. We work together on a daily basis, but coming from different corners of the globe, many members had not actually seen each other for months.  It was a time to catch up, a time to share questions and ideas and a time to really hone in on what ProForma can do.

The Summit proved to be all that we hoped for and more. ProForma – Forms and Templates for JIRA Service Desk, was validated, with both JIRA users and Atlassian Experts expressing the need for help in dealing with business processes.  However, the team also had some surprises, discovering new needs and challenges to be addressed.  Best of all, Summit provided an opportunity to meet new people, make new friends and to see all of the exciting changes that are on the horizon, both from Atlassian and from other teams building new add-ons.

Help is Needed… and Help is on the Way

Whether you’re looking from the top down or from the bottom up, business processes are messy.  One attendee told of having to complete four separate forms in order to attend the Summit. As she was finalizing her air travel, the Finance Department asked for proof that they had approval to attend. Now she had to spend precious time digging up all four of those forms to present them to Finance.

It doesn’t have to be that way.  Imagine all parties involved, from the attendee to the approving supervisor to finance, using JIRA and being able to see all of the relevant forms attached to a single request.  We believe that ProForm can make getting approval to attend a conference (or any business process) faster and easier.

JIRA administrators are frustrated too.  They receive more requests for Custom Fields and Screens than they can keep up with.  They struggle to explain that too many Custom Fields can make the system unwieldy.  Faces lit up with excitement and relief as they learned about we are doing.  Knowing that business teams will soon be able to manage their processes in JIRA for themselves is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Our Head is in the Cloud, But…

Information learned at Summit 2016 not only validated the need for ProForma, but also set a direction for the future.  One of the biggest take-aways was that while everyone loves the flexibility of the cloud, many of Atlassian’s biggest users are still behind a firewall.  So the team at ThinkTilt is working on developing a version of ProForma that can work on an on-site server, with the goal of having it by the first quarter of 2017. 

What else is the ThinkTilt team at Working On?

  • Form enhancements
    Choice lists, question types, design options…the team is busy adding elements to make the forms even easier to set-up and use.
  • Diving deep into HR and Marketing
    While there are over 100 existing forms in the ProForma template library, spanning the range of business processes from getting a key made to getting a contract reviewed, a lot of attendees talked about the need for support in the areas of HR and Marketing.  As the library of templates continues to expand the team at ThinkTilt will focus on building the forms that are needed most.
  • Internal signing of documents
    ThinkTilt is thrilled to be partnering with HelloSign, one of the leading providers of legally enforceable eSignatures for forms and documents.  Setting people free from the ‘Print, Sign, Scan’ process is one of ProForma’s key features.  Currently, you can use HelloSign to sign forms that are placed on the Customer Portal. However, soon you’ll be able to have internal users sign forms attached to an issue – great for those processes that need multiple levels of approval.
  • Summit 2017 - Barcelona
    The ThinkTilt team is very excited to be making plans to head to Barcelona in May for the first Summit in Europe.  ¡Nos vemos alla!

Top Picks from Summit 2016

Summit was both a lot of fun (everyone was so friendly!) and a great chance to see what’s on the horizon.  Along with all the exiting news from Atlassian, the ThinkTilt team was really impressed with some of the products being showcased in the exhibitor hall.  Favorites include:

  • Refinedwiki  - The makers of RefinedTodo are bringing their theming magic to JIRA Service Desk.
  • Arijea – Get the big picture with story maps that create a visual representation of the customer’s journey.
  • Stratejos  Who doesn’t need a smart assistant? This one is great for project management and knowing the real status of things.  
  • ClearVision – Congratulations go out to ClearVision for winning Atlassian's "Top New Business Global Award," and also a big “thank you“ for their willingness to share their knowledge and expertise.
  • RollBar - Mistakes happen. Rollbar is a great way to track and manage errors.

It was great fun to spread the love, spread the word about ProForma, and of course, to spread the Vegemite.  See you all in Barcelona!

The ThinkTilt Summit 2016 team

The ThinkTilt Summit 2016 team