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In this post, I’m going to show how Microsoft Teams can integrate with other applications to streamline your Product Management processes.
I’ve taken several product management-oriented apps on a test drive to call out where the integration feels seamless and others that aren’t quite so robust. And if you’re still considering options, I’ll highlight how some features complement and others are redundant. Sadly, when I started this research, I hoped for more integration points than I found. While there are powerful Product Management applications available, the partnership with Teams hasn’t reached a priority for their customers. Custom apps can also be created and uploaded, but that topic will not be covered in this series.
Product Management Connectors In Teams
As stated in the last post, the software descriptions below are not meant to be exhaustive. All of these are amazing stand-alone products. This series is designed to call out the integration points specifically with Teams if you are considering new investments or trying to rationalize ones already made.
Smartsheet is an application for collaboration and work management that is used to assign tasks, track project progress, manage calendars, share documents and manage other work.
Pros of using Smartsheet with Teams
- Can add published sheets, Reports, Sights and Forms as tabs
- Add new tasks and edit existing ones
- Set conditional formatting (if you own the sheet)
- Add Forms as a tab to collect information
- Turn on the highlighter for recently changed tasks and define the timeframe
- Smartsheet has an extensive help library on integrating with Teams
- Add attachments, comments and use undo/redo buttons
- Switch between grid, calendar. kanban and gantt views and can export these views to PDF and Excel
- Filter tasks based on ID, Start Date, Due Date, Status, Progress, Assigned To and more
Cons of using Smartsheet with Teams
While quite a few impressive features are fully integrated into Teams, there are still a few missing:
- Can’t insert columns in Grid View in Teams
- Can’t export to MS Project, PNG or Google Spreadsheets
- Can’t create alerts or actions
- Can’t create new board
- Gantt charts must be set up by owner/publisher before can be viewed by anyone else
Aha! is a strategy and roadmap application that allows Product Management teams to plan their vision, strategy, features, ideas, mockups and releases for each of their products. It integrates with Slack, Salesforce, GitHub and more.
Pros of using Aha! with Teams
- Get Aha! notifications in their respective Teams’ channel
Cons of using Aha! with Teams
- The integration begins and ends with the notifications
- There is no link back to Aha! even after configuring the two services to talk to each other
UserVoice is an application that ties customer data to product feedback to help prioritize features on a product roadmap. It allows users to identify trends, perform A/B testing and view customer spend. In all transparency, I was hoping to sign up for the free 14 day trial to test this integration, but UserVoice is phasing out the trials. The screenshot below is from the live demo on their site.
If this is integration you are interested in, use their UserVoice page to be heard.
Pros of using UserVoice with Teams
- The UserVoice connector sends notifications about activities on your UserVoice tickets.
Cons of using UserVoice with Teams
- No visibility into UserVoice portal from Teams
Pivotal Tracker is an agile project management for real-time collaboration around a shared, prioritized backlog.
Pros of using Pivotal Tracker with Teams
- Select which channel to post notifications
- Choose which notifications are sent to the channel
- Notifications displayed are easy to recognize:
- Link back to Pivotal Tracker web site is available
Cons of using Pivotal Tracker with Teams
- No functionality outside of receiving notifications
Up Next – Connectors and Bots For More Departments
The next set of blogs on will focus on Customer Service, Recruiting, Sales/Marketing and Developer/Coding work groups and will include integrations for the following, and a whole lot more!
Check back in a couple of weeks when I’ll share tools for Sales and Marketing. If there are other connectors you’d like us to take on a test run, of if you’d be willing to share your experience using Teams for Product Management, please let us know via LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or email@example.com.