You have created and mapped your list of initiatives, now it's time to prioritize them based on an assessment of value against risk/effort from a relative perspective. It is important to note that the assessment is purely based on a relative comparison between the initiatives rather than an absolute value assessment, i.e. when comparing two initiatives, which one has a higher value and lower risk/effort.
Undertaking a relative comparison between initiatives will help spark discussions among your colleagues as to which initiatives will deliver the higher or lower value against risk/effort. This discussion is an invaluable step in gaining consensus as a team.
You can learn more about our prioritization matrix and the definitions for value and risks in our blog article called Prioritization Matrix Examples.
To help with prioritizing your initiatives we use a common 2 x 2 with value on the y-axis and risk/effort on the x-axis, see diagram below.
Placing initiatives on the 2 x 2 and assessing relativity
In the Prioritize Initiative function under the Initiatives step the initiatives you have created are listed in the panel on the left. Associated with each initiative are the actions you have assigned, which will help you to understand what will be delivered by the initiative.
To prioritize your initiatives, follow these steps:
- Select and drag/drop each initiative onto the 2 x 2 - just an approximate location based on your initial assessment of value against risk/effort will do.
- Position each initiative based on their relative value against risk/effort when compared to other initiatives on the 2 x 2 by selecting and drag to move the initiative to a new position.
- Repeat step 2 until you (and your colleagues) are in consensus on the relative position of each initiative.
Tips: Use the zoom in/out to focus in on a quadrant and use the "A" increase and decrease buttons to change the initiative name font size.
Removing an initiative from the 2 x 2
To remove an initiative that you have placed onto your 2 x 2, first select the initiative and then click on the delete button (the trash can in the top left corner).
Note, deleting an initiative from the 2 x 2 does not delete the initiative completely from your roadmap document. This action will simply remove the initiative from the 2 x 2 only.
Determining which initiatives are the target for your strategic roadmap
Using the 2 x 2, you have already placed your initiatives and made an assessment of each based on their relative value against risk/effort. Typically, the initiatives which fall in the top right quadrant (highest value and lowest risk/effort) are the initiatives you should implement first without a doubt. Conversely, you should reconsider (delay or defer) initiatives which are in the lower left quadrant as these represent the lowest value and highest risk/effort. For the initiatives in the top left quadrant, you should challenge whether these initiatives should be implemented. The lower right quadrant initiatives are possible, but again you should question why these should be implemented.
When you have lots of initiatives and limited resources (that's probably most of us), then Jibility enables us to select the initiatives that matter most on the 2 x 2 using a Target Zone selector. The target zone is defined by the re-sizeable orange rectangle which is anchored to the top right corner of the 2 x 2.
To re-size the target zone (which acts like a lasso), just select and move the target zone re-sizer which is the orange dot on the lower left corner of the target zone.
Tips: You can tell which initiatives are in the target zone as these have a solid circle.
An initiative can have a "Not Assessed", "Assessed" or "Priority" status. On the 2 x 2, the look of the circle that represents an initiative indicates its status, as shown below.
A fully filled circle is "Priority" which means this initiative was selected in the target zone as priority for implementation.
A partially filled circle is "Assessed" which means this initiative was assessed and placed on the 2 x 2 but is outside the target zone and not a priority for implementation.
An empty circle is "Not Assessed" which means this initiative exists but not yet assessed on the 2 x 2.
How to include or exclude a specific initiative as priority.