1631181780 <![CDATA[Blog]]> /blog english nigel@newverveconsulting.com Copyright 2021 2021-09-09T10:03:00+00:00 <![CDATA[Cyber Essentials]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/cyber-essentials https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/cyber-essentials#When:10:03:00Z


Committed to Cyber Security

Many companies claim that they are ‘committed to cyber security’. New Verve is too. But what does that actually mean? And how can we reassure our customers that we practice what we preach?

We recently carried out an internal audit to satisfy one of our customer’s ISO 9001 obligations. As part of this audit, we needed to highlight how as a business we complied with all applicable data protection legislation. Crucially for our customer, we needed to show that when it came to data security, we had adequate measures in place to ensure the confidentiality, integrity and availability of their data.

As a business, we are process and detail driven. We have always carried out due diligence on supplier systems and software, and we have a number of operational runbooks and policies in place to help enable staff to work in a secure way. So, we were in a good place and scored very highly in the audit.

However, we identified a few areas where we could make improvements.

Working From Home

Similar to lots of other businesses in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the New Verve team had no choice but to work remotely for an extended period of time. We now have a permanent ‘work from anywhere’ policy, meaning that people can work wherever they like as much as they like.

‘Anywhere’ equals somewhere that ultimately New Verve does not directly manage or control. To mitigate against cyber risks when staff work from a non-office location, we already had established numerous measures:

  1. staff are provided clear obligations and guidance within our policies (Data Protection, IT and Communications, Work from Home, and Information Security Incident Management).
  2. when accessing any New Verve or customer data, every staff member must use their New Verve laptop or a company-managed work profile (e.g. on mobile devices).
  3. every staff member must connect to our VPN facility before accessing any of our systems.

However, we realised that we could do more to further reduce cyber risk, specifically when it came to network security. While VPN connections were dictated by policy, they weren’t automated. This of course left room for human error or oversight.

We replaced our own VPN hardware with AWS Client VPN, providing a highly-available, managed, and elastic cloud VPN solution to protect all network traffic. We then made sure that the connection to our VPN network was automated on all laptops when people logged in.

Software Safety

We’ve always encouraged and promoted autonomy within New Verve and for a while, every staff member was a local administrator on their own machines. This was great because it meant we did away with extra process. If somebody needed a tool to enable them to do their job, they could install it themselves.

Unfortunately, this approach doesn’t float so well when it comes to security.

To ensure that our machines only had software that had been properly assessed and approved by the business, we decided to ditch our ‘local admin’ approach. All unapproved software was identified and removed from New Verve machines. Now, staff must seek approval for new software via our service desk and when approved, the software is installed and managed remotely by an authorised staff member using JumpCloud‘s software management feature.

Training

Staff need to be enabled when it comes to data protection. Until recently, New Verve has provided data protection guidance in the form of policies and operational runbooks. However, we realised that we were lacking a formal training program.

To bridge this gap, we signed up to iHasco’s GDPR and Cyber Security training courses. Specifically, we provided advanced training to staff who are responsible for enforcing or managing data in our workplace, and essentials training for everyone else. The courses are well constructed and delivered, and the learning tool is extremely easy to use.

Reassuring Customers with Cyber Essentials

The audit that we carried out for our customer was great. It reassured us as a business that we were on the right track and in a strong position when it came to data security. It also identified areas where we could improve and we did so quickly.

So what next? How can we reassure our customers that this is the case?

Step in Cyber Essentials.

Cyber Essentials is a simple but effective, Government backed scheme that helps protect businesses against a whole range of the most common cyber attacks. Through an official certification, it gives companies peace of mind that their defenses will protect against the vast majority of common cyber attacks.

I’m delighted to say that as of July 2021, New Verve is now Cyber Essentials certified.

With this certification, we:

  1. have a clear picture of New Verve’s security level.
  2. can reassure our customers that we are working to secure our IT against cyber attack.
  3. can attract new business with our promise that we have cyber security measures in place.

If you haven’t already audited your own data security measures, I’d encourage you to do so now! Cyber Essentials is a great place to start. Feel free to reach out if you need more insight into the gaps we identified and how we address them.

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2021-09-09T10:03:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Atlassian Developer Day 2021]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/atlassian-developer-day-2021 https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/atlassian-developer-day-2021#When:12:16:00Z


Developer Day is an opportunity for app developers, admins and integrators to hear about the latest Atlassian efforts in the ecosystem. Atlassian Developer Day 2021 took place on 25th May, and continued on the previous year’s theme of a unified extensibility platform, Forge. Here are some key take-aways from this years event:

Free until 2024

Forge and its power will be free until 2024, which gives developers lots of time to create new apps using the single extensibility platform and consider rewriting existing apps in Forge.

Custom UI, the leading extensibility offering

Custom UI was announced at Developer Day 2020 and Atlassian has since seen a major uptake in apps written with Custom UI and especially those in the Marketplace. When Forge was first launched it was limited in capability and only allowed developers access to a controlled list of user interactions. With Custom UI, developers are less bound to limitations and can use more common front end frameworks and libraries like React, Angular and Vue.

Unified, platform power for everyone

The vision for Forge is to be the single extensibility platform for all Atlassian apps. Currently, Atlassian are working on integrating Forge with Compass and Trello to continue this vision. They are also working on a lot of exciting features in near term:

  • Performance and scale
  • Data residency
  • Observability
  • Multi user apps
  • Harmonisation with Connect

And much more!

Data egress

App security is at the core of Forge so, Atlassian initially released Forge with tight control over where data comes and goes. They are now allowing developers to add declarations to allow the app to bypass some browser security policies as long as it is accepted by admins to enable more use cases such as inline styling and more complex front-end setups.

Connect to Forge pathways

As part of the single platform initiative and harmonisation with Connect, Atlassian specified that current apps can either perform a full rewrite, or in the more likely scenario, migrate parts of functionality over time with Connect on Forge app features. During the presentation, they gave examples of how fictional apps, with striking similarities to existing apps on the marketplace, would migrate from Connect to Forge, for example “Script Jogger”, a Groovy automation tool, could migrate some of its component to increase security or “Spiffy”, a diagramming tool, could migrate to Forge to minimise egress of data.

If you would like to watch any of the developer day videos, they are currently on-demand for the rest of June. Watch the sessions here!

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2021-06-23T12:16:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Atlassian Team ‘21]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/atlassian-team-21 https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/atlassian-team-21#When:14:05:00Z Atlassian Team ‘21, formerly Summit, took place last week (28 & 29 April 2021) and comprised of two full days of inspiration and discovery, focusing on new ways to unleash your team’s full potential. The past year has seen our working lives transformed and the goal of Team ‘21 was to inspire ways to improve your work and wellbeing through Atlassian tools, whether you’re working from home or meeting face-to-face.

The event consisted of live keynote talks from Atlassian leadership, like Co-Founders and Co-CEOs Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar. Plus panel discussions and talks with the CEOs of Zoom and Slack, a world-cup winning Soccer coach, a New York Times bestselling author and many more! There was also on-demand content from across the Atlassian ecosystem covering teams and culture, business transformation, scaling for enterprise, ITSM and ITOM, DevOps and agile, and journey to the cloud.

Of course, Atlassian let us know about the products and updates they have planned for the coming year. Check out our announcement highlights below!

Point A

Atlassian introduced us to Point A - where good ideas become amazing products. Point A is a new generation of collaboration tools that span across all teams in an organization.

Jira Work Management

This work management tool is Jira for business teams, providing a single place to track, coordinate, and manage all aspects of an organisation’s work with structure and consistency. Jira Work Management connects seamlessly with Jira Software and Jira Service Management, all with a friendly and easy-to-use interface and 20 business-based templates ready to use. The tool is an enhancement of Jira Core and includes exciting new features such as ‘list view’, where all your project’s work is sorted into a single list that can be scanned quickly, sorted by category, and allows inline editing. The new features will be delivered automatically on April 28th to all cloud-based business projects with no loss of data or changes to settings.

Jira Work Management's new list view
Jira Work Management’s new list view

Jira Product Discovery

This tool will help product managers to build what matters! As the first Atlassian tool specifically built for product managers, Jira Product Discovery provides a single place to capture all product insights, ideas, data and engage with your teams. Product managers can prioritize work and integrate seamlessly it into delivery planning and execution. You can sign-up today to join the waitlist to be an early adopter.

Team Central

This is your organized home for teams, enabling you and your teammates to connect and communicate as frequently and frictionlessly as modern work demands. Team Central allows you to track goals and status updates, and connect staff to company values. You can identify problems then connect them to anyone, across any team to fix, giving everyone access to real time progress.

A sneak preview of Team Central from Atlassian
A sneak preview of Team Central from Atlassian

Compass

Compass enables you to track all DevOps work in one central, searchable location and helps software development teams realize the benefits of distributed architectures. The tool guides you through the challenges of data sprawl and connects teams, software components (services, APIs, documentation), insights and policies in one place.

Halp

Halp has recently joined the Atlassian family and is a modern ticketing help desk that seamlessly integrates with Slack and Microsoft teams so you don’t need to leave the tool you’re using to ask for help.

Remote work

Naturally, there was a huge emphasis on how to continue to work well as a team while working remotely. Atlassian announced they have published their Remote Plays - team-playbook enabling you to follow their lead while working from home.

Updates to assist cloud migration

As Atlassian moves further towards becoming a cloud-first organization, they have made some changes that will help your company on your migration journey:

  • Cloud Enterprise Edition - Enterprise-grade security, control, and flexibility on Cloud. There will be enhanced security and data compliance, and a platform that drives team collaboration at scale. Unlimited instances, highest uptime guarantee and 24/7 Enterprise support were key features announced at Team ‘21.
  • Data Residency - coming later in 2021, Data Residency will be available across all paid plans, expanding capabilities and additional regions. Find out more information here.

We know how challenging it can be migrating to Atlassian Cloud, especially if you have a complex setup with lots of apps, integrations, and bespoke configuration. We have lots of experience with complex setups and can help you plan your journey to the cloud, get in touch to speak to one of our technical experts who will guide you through the process.

Jira Service Management

Jira Service Management brings Dev, IT and business teams together and empowers your teams to deliver great service experiences, fast.

Atlassian is investing in an intuitive self-service portal, a built-in knowledge base, conversational ticketing capabilities using Halp and as a result of Atlassian’s recent acquisition of ThinkTilt, ProForma capabilities will be included in JSM, giving you access to an easy forms builder that includes 300+ pre-built templates.

ProForma in action in Jira Service Management
ProForma in action in Jira Service Management

Atlassian also announced that Mindville Insight asset management capabilities will be included in Jira Service Management premium and enterprise plans. Insight enables you to discover and track assets which aid planning, audits, and compliance, making it a great tool not only for teams to manage IT assets but also HR, sales, legal, facilities, and other functions.

Finally, Atlassian’s investments in deeper incident and change management capabilities means that your Dev and IT teams can respond to changes and resolve incidents faster, ensuring that you have great customer and employee service experiences that are always on.

Open DevOps

Dev and IT teams can now collaborate on a common platform with Open DevOps! A new pre-configured DevOps project in Jira combining Jira Software, Confluence, BB, JSM and partner tools. Open DevOps enables your team to use the tools they need (and want) to build, ship and operate software effectively.

Access

A reminder that Access has been updated to help unblock users and improve your overall Access experience.

  • In order to give you more flexibility, Access customers can now set multiple authentication policies to apply to different subsets of users in their organizations.
  • You can now select one authentication policy to be non-billable so, you can choose small groups of users to exclude from Access billing if they do not want to apply any Access features to that group.
  • The domain claim email will be removed - instead, managed users will now see a non-intrusive notification on their profile page. This will help customers evaluate Access without unnecessary disruption.
  • Atlassian also revealed they now support Statuspage and PingFederate, as well as supporting provisioning external users.

Trello

Trello is also receiving an update, as we continue in this era of remote work, in order to combat data sprawl and facilitate collaboration.

5 new board views have been introduced - Timeline, Table, Map, Calendar, Dashboard - to give new perspectives to work and Link Cards give users visibility into their work across other tools.

Trello's new board view options
Trello’s new board view options

Atlassian will be building on the visual nature of Trello over the next year and they will be opening up boards and cards to bring in data from tools and services that teams already rely on.

Confluence

Confluence enables teams to collaborate on one platform and now Atlassian want to make that even easier while adding more personality to the tools!

Newly available features include new editing capabilities, smart links, page archiving, analytics and team calendars, plus the mobile version has had an upgrade so it now includes features such as dark mode, inline comments, and supports 18 languages.

Coming soon:

  • customization of pages (cover images, title emojis, space avatars and more)
  • smart links to display other tools in their native format
  • scheduled publish
  • the ability to visualize data in a table into a graph or chart and edit macros in the right rail

And finally, coming later is a personalized activity feed and homepage and the addition of external guest collaborators.

Forge

Forge is Atlassian’s new Cloud extensibility platform where you can build apps that extend, integrate, and customize Atlassian’s Cloud products. This Cloud-only tool will be generally available to users– including in-house developers and Marketplace partners - on 25 May 2021 and is available for Jira and Confluence today.

“A crisis is a terrible thing to waste”

The Team ‘21 live broadcasts ended on this note from New York Times bestselling author, Malcolm Gladwell and it acted as a reminder that this past year has shown us just how important effective teamwork is to a company’s success. Atlassian have demonstrated that their tools are made with teamwork in mind and will continue to facilitate and improve collaboration across your whole company.

Get in touch if you would like to learn more about anything covered at Team ‘21, we’d love to assist your team in their Atlassian journey!

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2021-05-06T14:05:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Keeping track of your projects costs directly in Jira Cloud]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/keeping-track-of-your-projects-costs-directly-in-jira-cloud https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/keeping-track-of-your-projects-costs-directly-in-jira-cloud#When:08:18:00Z It’s hard to overstate the significance of a tool like Jira for anything stemming from project management. The platform has shown proof to be rock-solid and impactful as a one-stop shop for thousands of teams. However, there has always been a gap, in Jira Cloud, between the ability to associate monetary value to the actual progress of your projects. Up until now, you needed to take extra steps and jump away from Jira in order to gain visibility on your project’s costs: not ideal if you need to make sure your costs are under budget or you need to report to your stakeholders.

This low-hanging fruit has since been addressed and with the help of a couple of apps from the Jira Marketplace, you’ll be able to easily monitor the actual costs of your projects directly in Jira. Today, we’ll explore how two tools, Tempo Timesheets and Cost Tracker for Tempo Timesheets, can provide visibility on your project’s health.

Tracking time to calculate the cost of projects

To achieve our end goal of being able to track the costs of a project in Jira, we’ll need to first understand how much time has been spent on it. This is where Tempo Timesheets comes into play.

With Timesheets, users are able to log their daily tasks directly to Jira issues. While this is convenient as it keeps all the data inside Jira, the main advantage in this context is the possibility of overseeing where time is being spent accurately. In other words, stakeholders such as project owners, can reprioritize tasks that are falling behind, and with the help of Cost Tracker, can associate a monetary value to each task and issues of the project to further monitor the health of the project.

Having visibility into the time spent can help gain an understanding of the actual progress of a task.
Having visibility into the time spent can help gain an understanding of the actual progress of a task.

Tracking the cost of your projects with Cost Tracker

Once time has been logged on a project by users in Jira, you will have all the data you need to start tracking the costs of your projects.

The process is extremely simple and can be done in less than 5 steps: Create the Project in Cost Tracker, define the scope, define the default hourly rate, and define your project’s budget.

Conveniently, 80% of the process can already be done in the Cost Tracker home page. In this example, we created a project where we wanted to track all the issues related to the “AKA board” and set a default hourly rate of 10 USD per hour, meaning that for every hour logged to the AKA project, it costs the company 10 USD. Once that is defined, Cost Tracker does the calculations automatically, so the process is fairly hands-off.

Finally, the last thing to do is to set a budget, which will be visually represented by an orange line. You could go without one but realistically these occasions are very rare. To set a budget, you can either put a lump sum (e.g: flat amount of 50,000 USD) or you could go with milestones, which are cumulative sums to your budgets being unlocked at certain dates (e.g: 10k USD from Jan. to Feb., 15k USD from March to May).

You can add the budget and the Milestones from the Configuration Tab of a Cost Tracker Project.

Now that all the key variables have been defined, you will see in the “Overview” tab how the project is doing cost-wise based on the variables that you defined.

As can be seen from the image above, we are doing a terrible job at respecting our budget. We can immediately see that we are about 920k USD above our budget, which would be, under normal circumstances, disastrous. Note that we’re able to hover over days to see what our breakdown for costs are. Had we started tracking the cost of the project earlier, we could easily have seen that the costs were going to be too significant and reorganized the scope.

Diving deeper in the data

That being said, we might want to understand what tasks our budget is being allocated to. This level of granularity is possible via the “Scope” tab where all the tasks that are part of the Cost Tracker Project will be broken down on an individual basis by Costs and Time.

Note that it is possible to organize these tasks by group in order to make the information easier to read. For example, if numerous departments are all working on a project, we might be interested in segmenting the departments to better understand where costs originate from and if they represent the planned costs that we had in mind. Additionally, this could be done to segment different phases of a project, to make sure that each phase is well documented.

One of the main advantages of being able to have the costs and time of an issue is the added visibility from the data. This information can help fuel communications to other stakeholders or clients and keep them up-to-date on the status of the project. In addition, this information can be reused in further projects to help create better approximations as to the cost and time needed to complete tasks and projects of similar nature.

A convenient way to track costs in Jira

We’ve seen how quickly a user is able to set up a Cost Tracker portfolio to keep on top of his project’s costs. The convenience of pooling the data directly from Jira and keeping it in the platform is paired with the added visibility in the actual costs of the project. Indeed, we explored a certain degree of granularity in the data that can be used to help Project Owners understand the tasks that their budget is being spent on and answer if they will be able to finish the project within budget.

You can enjoy a free 30-day trial of Tempo Timesheets and Cost Tracker for Tempo Timesheets from the Atlassian Marketplace.

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2021-04-07T08:18:00+00:00
<![CDATA[New Verve Presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/new-verve-presents-atlassian-in-scotland-2020-webinar-series https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/new-verve-presents-atlassian-in-scotland-2020-webinar-series#When:11:16:00Z Like everyone in 2020, New Verve’s plans were disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and we had to embrace the world of online events. Our annual, in-person event, New Verve presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 was scheduled to take place in Glasgow on 10 March 2020. However, as the number of cases was accelerating rapidly at this time, we decided to cancel the event for the safety of our delegates, partners and sponsors.

After adjusting to life in lockdown and working from home, we were able to transform the event into the New Verve presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series, a series of six online webinars starting in July and taking place across the latter half of 2020.

The theme of the Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series was IT Service Management (ITSM). ITSM is a concept for IT teams to manage the delivery of IT services to customers, with the key focus being to deliver a service based on customers’ needs. The webinar hosted a range of experts from across the industry to present and discuss topics spanning all processes and activities involved in designing, delivering, and maintaining IT services.


Industry Experts Presenting Best Practices

The series was able to integrate most of the presenters and panel members from the original, in-person event along with some new content from additional speakers. The aim of the webinars was to explain how, using Atlassian tools and best practices, you can build a robust, lean and agile ITSM solution for your business. Our presenters discussed their successful approaches to ITSM and displayed how you can apply their processes to your solution.

We began with Atlassian’s approach to ITSM and learned how Atlassian tools and best practices can help you to adapt to new ways of working in a world of digital transformation, Agile, and DevOps. This was presented by Joachim Fuchs, Pre-Sales Solution Engineer at Atlassian.


Throughout the series we learned about other approaches to IT service delivery, including ITIL and more specifically the latest iteration, ITIL4. The discussions included the evolution of the ITIL processes while explaining the changes in the grouping and structure that have lead to ITIL4 and the role of automation within the practices was highlighted. The presentations explained how to adapt your practices and tools to new versions of ITIL and how to get the most out of ITIL with Jira Service Management.

Showcasing Atlassian Products and Partner Tools

Atlassian ITSM tools and solutions were at the centre of the series and our presenters demonstrated how products like Jira Service Management, Jira and Confluence are key in an agile and collaborative ITSM approach. This was displayed when Lorraine Brown shared how Capita Consulting uses Jira Service Management as one of the key components in delivering their client support service.

We also got to hear from our partners, eazyBI, Refined and Insight who were the sponsors of our original event. The presenters demonstrated how their products work alongside Atlassian tools and we saw examples of how the tools have enhanced our customers’ IT service delivery processes.


Presenting Customer Success Stories

Our webinars also hosted some New Verve customers who were able to present their ITSM success stories. Stephen Neil, IT Infrastructure Lead at Mary’s Meals explained how, with the help of New Verve, the Scottish charity were able to introduce Jira and Jira Service Management to help them deliver an efficient global support service. Stephen also explained how they were able to work more agile with their suppliers, drive self-sufficiency and manage the movement of their assets through Insight.


As mentioned previously, we also learned how our partners’ tools work alongside Atlassian software to enhance our customers’ ITSM solutions. We heard from Peter Hinds, Synergy Learning’s Head of Operations about how they have used Refined to build a robust ITSM solution. New Verve’s own Head of Operations, Kris Siwiec also presented Cloud migration considerations for ITSM reporting in eazyBI using customer examples. These considerations are of greater significance as Atlassian move further towards becoming a Cloud-first organization.

Engaging in Insightful Discussions

The series gave our audiences an opportunity to ask the ITSM experts their questions on the topic in a Q&A session at the end of each webinar. This allowed our presenters to engage in insightful discussions and give their opinions from across the industry. This was especially the case in our panel discussion webinar where our panellists explored how IT teams can create value at speed, covering the future of IT and how to break down silos, adapt quickly, and be more agile.

Creating a Successful Webinar Series

New Verve want to thank all of our fantastic presenters for helping to make our first webinar series such a success. We’d also like to thank our attendees for joining us, asking great questions and providing useful feedback.

The New Verve presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series provided expert knowledge and demonstrations of Atlassian IT Service Management solutions and best practices and gave attendees the resources to build a robust and agile IT service delivery team. The series allowed us to maintain Atlassian in Scotland’s commitment to sharing the knowledge from local Atlassian experts while also upholding our gender diversity commitment (we were able to preserve a near equal split between female and male presenters) and bringing together teams from across Scotland’s Atlassian ecosystem to collaborate, discover and have fun!

Watch the series now

The full webinar series is up on our YouTube channel for you to watch and share!

Keep an eye on our events page where the announcement of our next webinar series will be coming soon! #TartanTeamwork

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2021-03-16T11:16:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Getting Started with Trello]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/getting-started-with-trello https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/getting-started-with-trello#When:10:12:00Z Welcome to our third blog in the Knowledge Sharing Workshop Series which aims to share the insightful content curated by the New Verve team during our regular program of internal knowledge sharing workshops. We wanted to share the knowledge beyond our team and elaborate on the methods and tools New Verve use in our client solutions. To read more about how and why we hold the workshops, read the first blog in our series.

New Verve’s Senior Developer, Victor Lee hosted a workshop for our team explaining how to get started with Trello and we’ll share what he covered in this blog. Trello is an organization and collaboration tool by Atlassian, that you can use to make Kanban-style lists to see project information at a glance.

Trello can be used for a wide range of projects for both personal and team organization. From planning a holiday, to a project to-do list, you can easily create a Trello board that fits your needs.

At New Verve we use it for a range of projects across all our teams, for example, we have a marketing content schedule, project retrospectives and a place to plan and share suggestions for our knowledge sharing workshops. As we continue to work from home, Trello is the perfect tool to enable collaboration and coordination across remote teams.

Let’s start with the basics…

The Basics

Trello is structured into boards, lists and cards that enable teams to organize and prioritize projects and tasks in a simple and efficient way.

Boards

A board represents a project or a place to keep track of information. A new board can be created for each new project and at a glance you can see the whole project broken down to cards on lists.


Lists

Lists can be created in boards and they are used to keep track of cards. A list can show the progress of a task, it can move from To Do to Doing, then Done, as shown below. They can also can signify a new topic or segment a project. For example, in our content schedule each list is a new month and in project retrospectives there are lists for what went well and what needs improved.


Cards

Cards sit in the lists - they are the ideas, tasks and comments. Cards be moved between lists showing progression or completion of a task.


The Rest

  • Members - Boards can be public, or you can select which members you’d like to see the board.
  • Labels - Each card can be given a label, making filtering easier and enabling you to categorize.
  • Due dates - Choose whether or not you want to give a card a due date - this helps you to keep track of when your tasks are to be completed.
  • Checklists - Add a checklist to a card to keep track of any subtasks. Multiple checklists can be added to each card.
  • Archive - Archive cards or lists when they are no longer relevant so your board remains easy to read. You can refer back to the archives at any time.

The Not-So-Obvious

Trello’s features are extensive so here are some things that may not be apparent right away.

Templates

Not sure where to start when making your board? Explore Trello templates for some inspiration. Here are a few of our top choices:

Shortcuts

Like any great tool, Trello has shortcuts and tricks that can help you save time and work more efficiently. Here are some of the most handy shortcuts:

  • See all the shortcuts - [?]
  • Assign or remove yourself from a card by hitting - [spacebar]
  • Add or remove labels from cards - [l]
  • Archive cards - [c]
  • Open the ‘Boards’ navigation menu - [b ]
  • Add a due date to a card - [d]

PowerUps

PowerUps enhance your boards beyond the basic features. You can customize your work and add features that will mean Trello is the perfect tool to meet you needs. Here are a few we like.

Custom fields

Custom fields enable you to capture the information you need. You can add a lot of meta data that can then be used in automation or other power ups.

Butler

Butler is Trello’s automation tool. It can help you preform simple tasks with ease or add helpful insights and automations across your whole team. You can build the Butler automations that you need in the command builder which can be found through the Butler Button at the top right of your board or in the board menu.

There are five different Butler commands:

  • Rules - rules can be made to trigger commands that will perform an action when conditions are met.
  • Card buttons - create buttons that perform an action within a card.
  • Board Buttons - create buttons that perform at a higher level, across the whole board.
  • Calendar - commands can be made so that tasks are actioned on a schedule.
  • Due dates - this allows you to watch out for upcoming due dates and process cards accordingly.

Here are some examples of how Butler can help you:

  • Easily tidy up finished projects: once a card is marked done, you can use Butler to mark any remaining items on a checklist as done, to mark due dates complete, and to remove yourself from the card.
  • Start work with ease: use Butler to create a button that moves a card into your ‘doing’ list, adds you to the card and assigns a due date once you’ve started the task.

The Butler tool helps you save time by doing simple tasks for you: another great way that Trello can help you work efficiently and collaboratively.

Calendar

Did you know that you can view your cards in your personal calendar by subscribing to an iCalendar feed? Trello can integrate with your schedule so you never miss a task’s due date.

More Trello Tips

Here are some of the New Verve Team’s top tips for Trello beginners to get the most out of your boards:

  • Organize your board with labels: you can quickly add and remove different coloured labels to your cards using the numerical keys [0 - 9]. You can change the name and colour of your labels or create new labels to have a colour-coordinated board that you can understand at a glance.
  • Get creative and customize your boards: change your background picture and add card covers and colours to add a bit of flare to your workspace.
  • Save time by automating repetitive tasks: using Butler, you can automate repetitive tasks like adding labels and assignees.
  • Celebrate completing tasks: add the celebration emojis to your done list and receive a virtual pat on the back when tasks are complete!

Trello helps teams work more collaboratively and get more done. How does your team use Trello? Let us know in the comments along with any top Trello tips you have!

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2021-03-01T10:12:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Updates to the Atlassian Cloud Roadmap and What it Means for You]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/updates-to-the-atlassian-cloud-roadmap-and-what-it-means-for-you https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/updates-to-the-atlassian-cloud-roadmap-and-what-it-means-for-you#When:12:54:00Z As you may know, on 16 October 2020 Atlassian Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Scott Farquhar published a blog post which announced the end of life for Atlassian Server and the roadmap for Atlassian’s investment in becoming a cloud-first organisation.

At New Verve, we understand some companies will be worried about what this means if they have not yet made the move to cloud but we want to ensure you we will be there to help and support you in this journey. This blog post will summarize the updates outlined by Scott Farquhar and will explain how New Verve will approach these changes in order to best support our customers.

Key Details of the Atlassian Announcement

Changes to Server Products

On Tuesday 2nd February 2021, the following changes to server will come into effect:

  • End of new server licence sales: customers will no longer be able to purchase or request a quote for a new server product.
  • Updates to server prices: prices will be increased for server upgrades and renewals.

On Friday 2nd February 2024, the following will go into effect:

  • End of support for all server products: support and bug fixes will no longer be available for server products.

Updates to Data Center

Atlassian understands that the switch to cloud comes with challenges and that it may not be viable option for all companies due to certain business requirements, that’s why they will continue to offer their “robust self-managed enterprise edition”, Atlassian Data Centre for these customers. Atlassian has added new capabilities and features to make it easier to use cloud and Data Center products together.

Atlassian has also strengthened Data Center by offering priority support with Data Center subscriptions for most user tiers and they have made some of their most powerful apps available natively. Updates to apps will be available from Tuesday 2nd February 2021 and include:

  • Jira Software Data Center: to include Advanced Roadmaps (formerly known as Portfolio for Jira)
  • Confluence Data Center: to include Team Calendars for Confluence and Analytics for Confluence
  • Jira Service Management Data Center: Insight – Asset management, Insight Discovery
  • Bitbucket Data Center: To include Priority Support for 251 or more users.
  • Crowd Data Center: To Include Priority Support.
  • Bamboo Data Center available: Coming soon.

To find out more about these changes you can access the Atlassian Data Centre Roadmap here.

If you’d like to engage a hosting partner to take over your the management and maintenance of your DC products, please get in touch. You can also find out more about our managed hosting (via AWS) here.

What are my options?

Over 90% of customers start with Atlassian cloud products, with more server customers making the switch every day. The announcements from Atlassian mean server customers have up to 3 years to make the changes and updates required to switch Atlassian platforms, and New Verve can help you to make this transition as seamless as possible.

If you have not already made the switch to cloud you have a few routes to explore:

  1. Remain on server for the short-term while establishing a future strategy.
  2. Migrate to Data Center if you have at least 500 users and are in a heavily regulated environment and/or need total data isolation.
  3. Start planning your move to Atlassian Cloud.

Where do I start?

The complexity and duration of migration depend on many factors. You should start to assess each of these before deciding a long-term strategy.

  • How do you host your applications? (e.g. behind the firewall, private cloud etc.)
  • How many and which Atlassian applications do you currently operate?
  • How many Marketplace apps do you have?
  • What level of bespoke customization do you have? (e.g. custom plugins, scripts, workflow extensions in Jira)
  • What integrations are currently in place with 3rd party tools?
  • Do you have multiple sites and do they need to be merged or consolidated?
  • How are your users provisioned and managed?

If you’re unsure where to start, we can help you audit your current estate, build your migration strategy and plan, and then help you execute it.

How can New Verve help you?

In the short-term, we can help you by:

  • creating multi-year quotes to lock in today’s prices,
  • giving you extended cloud trials for you to evaluate before migrating,
  • providing multi-year loyalty discounts for cloud and Data Center if you have over 1,000 users.

We’re committed to doing what’s best for our clients and our aim is to help your transition through these changes to be as smooth as possible. We have a team of people that can help you develop a long-term Atlassian strategy that makes sense for your business.

This might be a ‘lift and shift’ approach or you might wish to be more cautious, starting with a hybrid approach and migrating your estate over a period of time to minimize impact, avoid disruption, or await certain features on Atlassian’s or partners’ roadmaps to be delivered.

Whichever path you choose New Verve will be there to support you.

Find out more

While these updates from Atlassian may seem daunting, Atlassian and New Verve want to ensure we provide your company with long-term success as we move towards the new future of technology. You can read more about Atlassian’s strategy to become a cloud-first company in their cloud roadmap here.

If you have any questions about the changes outlined by Atlassian or the cloud migration journey then please do get in touch by either email or by giving us a phone on +44 141 291 5950. We are looking forward to supporting you in a successful migration soon.

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2020-10-20T12:54:00+00:00
<![CDATA[BambooHR Integration for Jira is now live!]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/bamboohr-integration-for-jira-is-now-live https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/bamboohr-integration-for-jira-is-now-live#When:10:46:00Z Do you wish that you could easily manage employee absences in Jira? Well now you can with BambooHR Integration for Jira, the simple app that allows you to see absence management in context.

BambooHR Integration for Jira, which is now available for trial and purchase on the Atlassian Marketplace, can enhance use experience by:

  • Easily connecting Jira to BambooHR® and configuring which absence request types to synchronize
  • Automatically synchronizing time-off requests to Jira issues and user profiles
  • Providing powerful integrations for the most popular planning apps including Tempo Planner and BigPicture

What is BambooHR®?

BambooHR® is a fantastic HR tool for small and medium businesses. It can be used to collect, maintain, and analyse your people data, improve how you hire talent, onboard new employees, manage compensation, and develop your company culture.

Alongside many of our own clients, we are also an avid customer of the BambooHR® product. A critical feature for us is leave management. When somebody wants to go off backpacking in the mountains, they raise a time off request which then goes through an approval process according to the policies that you define!

How does BambooHR Integration for Jira work?

BambooHR Integration for Jira gives you an easy way to manage employee absences by sync’ing vacations from BambooHR® into Jira. Employee time-off requests in BambooHR® are automatically recorded in Jira, giving you the ability to consider employee time-off when scheduling work.

See absence management in context

BambooHR Integration for Jira provides you with up-to-date employee absence information from BambooHR®. You can then work with this information in Jira to make more informed project scheduling decisions and transform your project planning capability.

Easy to configure

The app gives you the ability to configure time-off request types to suit the needs of your team. This means you only have to synchronize the request types that are relevant to your work and you can choose to keep certain absence request types confidential.

Customizable Synchronization

The synchronization schedule is configurable with BambooHR Integration for Jira so, you can choose the frequency of updates that best suits the needs of your team, ensuring absence information is there when you need it.

Powerful integrations

BambooHR Integration for Jira provides powerful integrations with business-critical resource planning tools for a seamless project management solution. These integrations include leading resource planning tools like Tempo Planner and BigPicture, so you can make robust scheduling decisions with the tools you’re already using.

How can BambooHR Integration for Jira help your organisation?

Enhance your Project Planning Capabilities

BambooHR Integration for Jira is the perfect app for scrum masters, project managers and PMOs who are responsible for planning people resource across multiple teams and projects. It allows project managers to effectively plan and manage resources using accurate and up-to-date information within Jira as time-off requests for all employees are synchronized. Employee availability is now easily accessible in one place and is available in real-time allowing for more accurate project planning.

The app also allows project managers to access a settings screen where they can customize how BambooHR® requests are synchronized and which requests are shown. Using these features, project mangers can synchronize requests to meet the planning needs of their teams while excluding the information that is unnecessary or confidential. The integration with leading resource planning and HR tools means that the app can integrate into and enhance the project management solution you already have in place.

BambooHR Integration for Jira provides scrum masters, project managers and PMO’s with the tools required to make accurate scheduling plans and decisions and can transform your project planning capabilities.

Where can you get BambooHR Integration for Jira?

BambooHR Integration for Jira is now available on Atlassian Marketplace and you can try it for free! Pricing for the app then starts at only $10 per month for 10 users. The app is currently available on Server but Data Centre and Cloud versions will be coming in the near future.

For more information on BambooHR Integration for Jira, you can browse our user guide here.

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2020-10-16T10:46:00+00:00
<![CDATA[Knowledge Sharing Workshops - ITSM]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/knowledge-sharing-workshops-itsm https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/knowledge-sharing-workshops-itsm#When:10:31:00Z Welcome to our second blog in the Knowledge Sharing Workshop Series which aims to share the insightful content curated by the New Verve team during our regular program of internal knowledge sharing workshops. We wanted to share the knowledge beyond our team and elaborate on the methods and tools New Verve use in our client solutions. To read more about how and why we hold the workshops, read the first blog in our series.

Daniel Vargas Llopis, Consultant at New Verve recently hosted a workshop on IT Service Management (ITSM) and we’ll share the highlights in this blog. IT Service Management is a concept for IT teams to manage the delivery of IT services to customers, the key of which is to deliver a service based on customers’ needs. ITSM spans all processes and activities involved in designing, delivering, and maintaining IT services.

ITSM has four core processes of service delivery. Those processes are Service Request Management, Incident Management, Problem Management and Change Management.

ITSM core processes

Service Request Management

Service Requests cover a wide range of customer requests for a service and these are often recurring requests. These requests can include generic IT help requests, for example, issues with computer logins or can be a more complex IT request like needing help to set up a VPN. Service Requests also cover hardware requests, whether you require new hardware or software or you are have an issue with your hardware or software.

Incident Management

System problems, server crashes or if a website is down are some examples of Incident Management. This process handles unplanned events or service interruptions with the aim of a fast incident resolution.

Jira Service Desk Default Incident Workflow

Problem Management

If an incident occurs on a regular basis, there is likely to be an underlying fault causing the issue; this is where Problem Management comes in. Problem Management is the process of identifying and managing the underlying cause of an incident to prevent the incident from happening again. Problem Management is an important process in your IT Service Management as while incident management solves the problem, problem management ensures these recurring problems do not happen again.

Change Management

The final ITSM process is Change Management, which focuses on implementing changes to the IT infrastructure while following standard procedures, ensuring minimal risk when executing these changes. Some examples of Change Management in ITSM are rolling out new services or fixing problems in the code.

Jira Service Desk Default Change workflow

Enhance your approach to ITSM

Frameworks like ITIL and COBIT have traditionally been used by IT teams to help improve IT governance and management, however, these can be considered restrictive and can lead to the use of clunky and inflexible workflows. Now, with the help of the recent ITIL 4 release, IT teams are moving towards more iterative and adaptive approaches to IT Service Management.

Your IT team can move towards a flexible and value-driven approach to IT Service Management by implementing an Atlassian based solution, using tools like Jira Service Management, Insight and Crumbs, our very own simple customer data management tool. You can also learn more about how New Verve can help you implement or enhance your organisation’s ITSM solution here. Get in touch with us to speak to one of our experienced consultants who can give you a detailed step-by-step demo.

New Verve presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series

Want to learn more about IT Service Management and see the results of Atlassian based ITSM solutions? Then join us for the New Verve presents Atlassian in Scotland 2020 Webinar Series. The webinars present customer success stories, industry presentations and product demos and have featured presentations from Atlassian, Mary’s Meals and Axelos. Details of the next webinar can be found on our events page and you can catch up on the rest of the series on our YouTube channel.

Watch out for the next blog in our Knowledge Sharing Workshop Series as we continue to share with you the tools and process that New Verve use to support successful client solutions.

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2020-09-22T10:31:00+00:00
<![CDATA[An Introduction to Our Knowledge Sharing Workshops]]> https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/an-introduction-to-our-knowledge-sharing-workshops https://www.newverveconsulting.com/blog/an-introduction-to-our-knowledge-sharing-workshops#When:08:55:00Z

New Verve’s Technical Consultant, Zoi Raskou, has written this blog showcasing our weekly internal knowledge sharing workshops. The blog will introduce you to our workshops, explaining why and how we do them, plus it will give you an insight into how they help to keep us connected and to improve as a business. The blog is the first in a series which will share the content from our workshops to introduce you to the tools and methods we use day-to-day and in our solutions.

“I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” famously quoted Maya Angelou and at New Verve our aim is definitely to do better. As a team with our hands stuck in many tools, we do know a lot of things but how well founded is this knowledge? Quite well I must say! How did we get to this stage and how can we maintain this level of expertise? Through painstaking research, hands on experience, and webinars and events among others. How can we enable new team mates to get up to speed with the tools, methodologies, concepts, and best practices? We share the knowledge!

Why do we do them?

Using brand new tools and dissecting the various new technologies and framework is always part of our job. However the Atlassian ecosystem is rather big. Each and every one of us have experience with a small section of this large net of tools and products which allows for our collective team knowledge to cover the full spectrum. But is this enough?

Judging from the length of this blog you might suspect that it isn’t. This organic development creates a knowledge gap between the team members that can block a small team from delivering projects quickly and efficiently. Having one expert in reporting means that our team has their hands tied when the expert is working on other projects, has other priorities, or is on their well-deserved annual leave.

What benefits do they bring?

Instead of having experts in each fields, we have members that are slightly better versed in products, tools, methodologies, etc. The knowledge sharing workshops are run by the most experienced among us who then share their wisdom with those not yet initiated.

Depending on the topic we might have a complete “Getting Started” guide, or a more targeted session on more complex tools. The MDX language used by the eazyBI report was the first workshop where an entire session was dedicated to a feature.

While we work from home we considered postponing the workshops. However after popular demand we decided to host them remotely. We have now found a new purpose to meet up during the week and take the time to connect with one another while also improving our work.

An additional benefit is that we are challenged as “experts”. We need to explain a topic to an audience that has varying levels of experience and we need to make sure that everyone can benefit from the session. Anyone who has tried to explain a new concept might identify with us and agree that it is very hard to explain it unless you have a deep understand yourself.

Last but not least, the presenter is given 30 minutes of our attention. This can mean a lot of things, it might be the time to shine or the most dreaded part of the week. For those of us with stage fright, the workshops aim to relieve that by having us present to a (somewhat) friendly audience.

How do we run them?

The key words about our process are quick and easy. We don’t want too much of everyone’s time to attend, and we also want the presenter to spend as little time as possible to prepare.

The sessions run on a weekly basis at a time when it suits most of the attendants. We have decided that this schedule works for us for a number of reasons, we have a least one week to schedule the next session and to prepare, it doesn’t interfere with our weekly schedule and our client engagements, and also keeps the attendance rate high.

Most sessions revolve around Atlassian and partner tools. Some examples are Atlassian Access, Insight, eazyBI, Portfolio, and Trello. We also have sessions on indirectly related topics such as Active Directories and Linux which aim to provide some context and enable us to understand the limitations or caveats of our solution designs.

Recent sessions have expanded the scope of our workshops, and we had sessions on productivity techniques to share our struggles, problems, and solutions that would be otherwise discussed casually in the office.

The workshop itself lasts 30-40 minutes, although some more complex topics have notoriously over ran. The participation rate is on average on 90% and we are flexible in how it is structured. Workshops that encourage discussion can divert from the presenter’s path, while others might reserve some time before the end of the session for questions and clarifications.

Each session is accompanied by a small presentation and/or page on the basic concepts discussed. The page serves as internal documentation, a reminder of the session, and also contains screenshots and links to further resources. Our aim is to enable everyone to get started on new tools and processes by providing an easy to read and follow guide that is accessible and can be expanded and improved as products are updated or we discover groundbreaking tools and features that help us revisit previous practices.

The Future of workshops

We plan to keep evaluating the sessions, experimenting with different content, and presentation styles. We aim to share useful insights and tips and tricks we have picked up along the way so keep an eye on our blog page for more from the workshops!

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2020-07-27T08:55:00+00:00