New Initiative Workflow

This document documents a proposed workflow to get new initiatives onto the CPE backlog.

The Process

The process to bring something to the attention of the CPE team consists of several steps:

  • Propose a new initiative; this proposal gives the “what” and “why” of the work requested.

  • The team will review and discuss the proposal and determine whether it fits its mission statement and thus if it is worth being pursued by the team, or whether this work falls under the responsibility of someone else.

  • If the CPE team determines the proposal to be in line with the mission statement, the team will work together with the submitter on figuring out the best approach to fulfill the request.

  • Based on the estimated amount of work, the initiatives currently in progress, priorities, and return on investment, the CPE team decides whether they can commit to this initiative, and if so, a rough timeline for it.

Writing Down a Requirements Document

The CPE team has prepared a template for you to use to write down your requirements document.

This document is divided into two parts, the first part is yours to fill. It is basically the what and why of your request:

  • What do you want the team to work on?

  • Why do you think it is worth doing?

Once your proposal has been accepted based on its subject and the specified reason, the team will contact you and you will fill out the second part of the template together.

Proposing a New Initiative

Once you have written down your requirement document, submit it to the CPE team for review. To do this, simply open a ticket on the CPE-initiatives issue tracker.

The ticket should contain the following items:

  • A link to your requirements document.

  • Potential dependencies for this initiative (dependencies on people or other initiatives).

  • Potential deadlines that could impact the initiative.

First Decision Point: Is This Initiative for the CPE Team?

Based on the information provided in the ticket, the CPE team will consider whether the initiative is in scope of the Mission Statement, and if there is a clear benefit for the communities the CPE team is involved in. If your initiative does not fit in the process outline of the CPE team, it does not mean your challenge is not worth pursuing - but that the CPE team has limited resources and needs to be careful on how they are spent.

Every two weeks, the CPE team will meet to go over the proposed initiatives. At this point, the CPE team will decide if it accepts your initiative, or, if necessary, appoint someone who will work with you to polish this document, improve the user-story, and discuss with you what is in scope and what isn’t.

Figuring out the Technical Solution

If your proposal is in line with CPE’s mission, you will be asked to collaborate with a team representative to figure out the best technical solution to answer the use-case and user stories set in your requirements document. This step may involve requesting input from any communities affected by this change.

The second part of the requirement document should be kept up to date to reflect the technical solution of choice, and, if applicable, document other approaches and why they were rejected (this may also be stored in a different place linked from the requirement document).

Final Decision and Prioritization

Finally, once the two parts of the requirement document have been filled, the CPE team and its stakeholders will be consulted to decide if the initiative is worth doing and what its priority status should be in the team’s backlog.

If the initiative is approved, the ticket will be closed as accepted and an epic will be created in the CPE Taiga board. It will then be up to the team working on this epic to track their work in Taiga or elsewhere (which should be documented in the epic).

If the initiative is not accepted by the CPE team, the ticket will be closed as rejected with an explanation as to why.

Every quarter of the year, the CPE team will meet to plan their work for the next one. During this meeting, the team will go over the proposed and accepted initiatives, weigh them against each other, prioritize them, and pick the ones that will be worked on.

Final Notes

This new workflow is a change from how the CPE team has worked until now. The core idea is to maximize the output of the team to the community. We are not able to accept everything and anything, and we want to make sure that what we accept is properly limited in scope and time. Hopefully this will allow us to work on more initiatives and bring more beneficial changes to our communities.