Ever wish you could multiply your user research efforts to ensure your team is working on the right features and designing them in the right way?

What if you could leverage the learnings of colleagues who already interact with prospects and customers every day?

Sales… customer success… marketing… They all have valuable insights about what users really need, and are willing to go out of their way to voice these insights — particularly when it’s clear they’ve been heard and have a real chance at influencing the direction of the product.

Well there’s a whole new way to collect pre-categorized feedback from colleagues…

Create an internal company Portal!

Internal company Product Portal
Create an internal Portal colleagues can use to vote on ideas on behalf of particular customers.

You may already be familiar with using the Portal as a way to keep customers informed about high-level ideas you’re still considering, as well as ideas that are planned, and features that you’ve launched.

But what you might not have realized is that…

Colleagues invited into your productboard project as contributors or makers can submit insights on Portal cards on behalf of particular customers.

To attribute feedback to a customer, they just need to access the Portal from within the productboard app. (If they access it from the private/public sharing link they’ll be able to vote on cards, but only as an end user.)

When contributors or makers access the Portal from within the productboard app, selecting cards offers additional options for submitting insights and attributing them to a customer.

And here’s the best part:

Feedback submitted directly on Portal cards gets automatically linked to the feature, subfeature, or component associated with the card.

When feedback from the Portal arrives as notes on your Insights board, their contents are already highlighted and linked for you. Such insights also automatically contribute to the user impact score. And the note is moved straight to Processed so all the feedback arriving from the Portal doesn’t clutter your inbox.

No action required! Just look forward to having these insights on hand when you’re ready to research some opportunity or send some feature or subfeature into product discovery.

Insights submitted on Portal cards are automatically highlighted and linked to related features, subfeatures, or components.

So what’s new here?

You’ve long been able to use the Portal to collect votes and feedback on ideas from customers as well as colleagues. And contributors have been able to submit insights on behalf of particular customers. But now that you can create multiple Portals within the same productboard project you have the option of creating a Portal specifically for internal colleagues that’s separate from your external-facing customer Portal.

Creating an internal Portal for colleagues can be valuable if you want to share an even more comprehensive set of feature ideas with colleagues than your public-facing Portal.

This might be the case because you’re optimizing for simplicity on your customer-facing Portal, whereas colleagues may have a higher tolerance for detail. Or perhaps your public-facing Portal only has a Planned tab, whereas your internal Portal has more nuanced tabs for each phase of development to keep colleagues in-the-know.

Whether you decide to keep your Portal internal or create one or more additional Portals for sharing with different external audiences, take advantage of this great way to keep stakeholders informed and collect large amounts of pre-processed feedback!

Winston Christie-Blick Jul 2, 2019