Guest blog: Using diagrams for Tempo marketing with Gliffy’s add-on for Confluence

This is a guest blog post from Jessie VanderVeen, Product Marketing Manager for Tempo plugin for JIRA.

Easy diagramming for Tempo using Confluence
At Tempo, our team uses both JIRA and Confluence for its collaborative functionality and interactive features (and, of course, we use Tempo for planning and time tracking on our JIRA issues!). We follow Agile methodology — our marketing team included — so our aim is to always maintain an efficient workflow and deliver quality results. To that end, good, effective communication is a must.

Visual communication offers a good counterpoint to text, adding another layer of depth, context, and meaning to it, and allowing its intended beneficiaries to better grasp a particular subject. Enter Gliffy into this scenario.

In the past, we’ve used Gliffy for team and product roadmapping in Confluence. Recently, we’ve been branching out and using Gliffy diagramming for some larger marketing projects that we’ve been working on.

How does Gliffy help Tempo marketing?
More recently, the Tempo marketing team has been using Gliffy to plan and strategize the wireframe for our new website re-design (still in process!), enabling us to create a sitemap for the new pages, identifying parent and child pages. Using Gliffy in the planning process has helped us to prevent headaches down the road, such as realizing that we’ve forgotten to add an important landing page, or that maybe all those bells and whistles are unnecessary, and we should focus more on content instead.

Even more recently, we’ve been using Gliffy to map out a series of evaluation surveys for Tempo, which we hope to send out to our users in the near future. We’re continually striving to make Tempo the best time tracking and planning add-on for JIRA out there, so user feedback is extremely important to us. We want to gather as much information as we can, and to that end, we want to make these evaluations user-friendly, and in a format that will encourage people to want to complete them.

Here’s a sample flow chart, which demonstrates a bit of our brainstorming process:

Gliffy’s diagramming allows us to collectively brainstorm on a whole different level — as a team, visually, cohesively, cogently, and efficiently. And, of course, better brainstorming generally means better, more creative, more value-added results. You really can’t go wrong there!

What makes Gliffy the ideal medium?

Easy-to-grasp. Using this plugin is as simple as selecting a template from a library of pre-made templates (or creating one yourself), and then selecting shapes from another extensive library, and dragging and dropping them like so. There’s no needed expertise involved — and when I say that, I really mean it! I personally like being able to easily add colors to shapes and text, and to edit fonts by clicking on an ‘edit properties’ box to customize diagrams.

Collaboration and feedback. Have you ever thought you had an amazingly, fantastically phenomenal idea, and when you shared it with a friend or colleague, received an unexpected, “Ehhh… not so much” response? You can avoid that with the brainstorming and collaboration that Gliffy’s diagramming adds to Confluence, easily identifying a problematic idea and then quickly getting back on course.

HTML5-based. Gliffy’s Confluence Plugin 5.0 has been rebuilt in HTML5, so it’s now twice as fast as the previous Flash version, which is great news for those of us who are constantly striving to work towards the speed of light. There’s no room for frustrating pauses and delays.

There’s a lot more that I’m missing, but you should probably just get your Venn on and try it yourself!