Electronic User Story Maps?

December 31, 2012

2016 Update: Forget about my attempt below and try this user story mapping add-on for JIRA:

User Story Map for JIRA

I received a great question from a customer today regarding user story mapping:

Quick q, are there any plans / thoughts on adding a higher level board for User Story Mapping ( vs. releases etc ) based on Jeff Patton’s work / ideas. We are struggling to communicate at a higher level epics vs stories vs projects vs priorities and after giving this a try ( manually using cards ) it appears to be really powerful.

The customer goes on to share that they are looking at using Easy Agile User Story Map for JIRA, an add-on for JIRA and GreenHopper. I wasn’t aware of this add-on previously so it was cool that the customer brought it to my attention.

The GreenHopper team has looked at user story mapping a few times over the past three years. We create a story map whenever we tackle a big piece of new functionality – epics, or release planning, for example.
What struck us every time we explored adding this to GreenHopper was that creating the user story map is:
  1. something you do at the start of a new project/epic, rather than an on-going task
  2. very collaborative with the whole team getting involved, walking around, creating paper prototypes and so on
For these reasons we have stuck to physical cards and avoided the projector during a user story mapping session. However, now that we know about the Easy Agile User Story Maps JIRA add-on we’ll be sure to take a look and see if we can retain the collaborative nature of these meetings.
Have you tried it? Tweet me and let me know.