Microsoft has today announced a new feature for Visual Studio Team Services. The company says Delivery Plans allow users to see a view of multiple teams and their work. An interactive work board, Microsoft says the new service makes organizing and updating work easier. This roll out comes after months of testing, the company says.

The idea behind Delivery Plans is to give VS Team Services customers an easier way to see work across Teams and Projects. Visual Studio already offers a similar solution in Kanban boards and Backlogs. Microsoft admits that these solutions do not offer a complete view of work across teams.

Delivery Plans give customers that single place to see a comprehensive view of work across multiple Teams and Projects. The feature presents the information in a calendar, showing all team interactions.

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The work from a team backlog is shown on a vertical row, with cards corresponding to a specific workload. Scrolling through the view shows older work or even projects planned in the future.

Microsoft says this is similar to a Kanban board but more intuitive and detailed:

“Like the Kanban board, a Delivery Plan is an interactive work board, although one designed for multiple teams. You can add teams from across all the projects in your account.  If the plan needs updating, you can simply drag cards to update the iteration path. And, like the Kanban board, you can customize the card fields so that you can see relevant information for your work.”

Delivery Plans in Visual Studio Team Services

Microsoft says it has been testing this feature internally for months. The company points out that it reviews the Delivery Plan every three week, asking the following questions (among others):

  • How confident are the teams in meeting the deliverables scheduled for each sprint?
  • Are dependencies across teams adequately addressed via the planned deliverables?
  • Are there gaps in the schedule? What’s the cause?

Visual Studio Team Services customers can now get the Delivery Plans in public preview. This is available to all users and comes as an extension from the Visual Studio marketplace.

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