EAP Process Feedback

Almost a year ago we started using this forum as a way for organizing EAPs. We created a new top-level category Early Access Programs - The Atlassian Developer Community wherein every EAP has a category (most of them are private).

Our intent here was to try to create a single source of truth for all of the EAPs someone is a part of. We regularly heard, “It is impossible to keep track of which EAPs we are involved in.” Putting it in CDAC also created an obvious space for discourse about the EAP to take place.

Now that is been a year, we wanted to revisit how it is going. Of those who have participated, what feedback do you have? How can we make it better? What part of it is terrible?

My own personal thoughts and notes here…

  • Our current setup is person-centric. Unless we add every person from every company to the EAPs that the company is involved in, each person will see a different list of EAPs they are involved in.
  • It isn’t obvious that discourse is actually happening. The amount of conversation in each EAP ranges from no posts except for the initial from the Atlassian PM :frowning: to a delightful number of topics where good conversation is taking place :slight_smile: . We probably need to figure out how we can better encourage the latter.
  • There isn’t a top of funnel for joining EAPs. We don’t have a centralized place where a PM can say, “We’re about to do an EAP on X, sign up here.” I assume there are reasons we don’t always want it to be that public. But, it’d be nice to have some public-ish general call for participants to ensure that everyone is getting involved that could benefit and not just folks that a PM happens to shoulder tap.

My feedback is that those EAPs we have been involved in have mostly gone well, and the category has met the goal of a single place to track things.

The big struggle we have with EAPs is that we have to adjust our priorities, often very quickly, to accommodate them, and it isn’t clear that we will get value from taking part. The reaction is often, “ooh that is interesting”, and we’d like to follow along but can’t reasonably commit to being an active participant. If there was a pipeline of EAPs that we could plan capacity for, we could be more valuable participants in EAPs.

Some EAPs come more complete than others. We would rather participate in the early stages of an idea, than come in late and effectively be QA for it. The more complete the EAP appears to be the less likely I am to push people towards putting effort in, because the feedback that we give is more difficult to incorporate.

Another thing, that you point out in your notes, is that we often don’t have the right people involved, and it takes a while to get the appropriate team access.

Another thing that could be considered around participation in an EAP is the benefits of taking part. Things like co-marketing and launch partnering should be part of every EAP where it is appropriate and there might be other benefits that can be thought about.

I wonder if there is a correlation between participation in an EAP and the popularity of that feature/program after launch.