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Now Next Later

Visualize and plan your roadmap across three time-based buckets — Now, Next, Later. Great for communicating priorities to large audiences in fast-changing environments where release dates are frequently modified.


Simple, easy to understand

High-level planning

Clearly visualize priorities

Big picture

Visualize Your Plans From 10,000 Feet

Clearly communicate your high-level priorities without getting bogged down in the details. Divvy your items into time-based buckets so that everyone knows what you’re working on now, what’s next, and what’s on your longer-term horizon. Items in the Now bucket should be detailed and include specs and user stories, but no specific dates. Items in the Next bucket should have a much wider focus, while items in the Later bucket don’t need details, as priorities may change before their development becomes relevant.

Why should I use the Now/Next/Later prioritization view?

You should use the Now/Next/Later view when you need a high-level way to visualize and communicate your product plans. Since this visualization is super easy to understand and doesn’t offer too many details it’s the perfect view to use when you want to communicate with large groups of people — like a company-wide meeting or a webinar.

How should I use Now/Next/Later prioritization view?

Divide your items into one of 3 time buckets — Now, Next and Later. Just like it sounds, you should put your high priority items in Now, and those that are a bit less important in Next. Later items are pushed off until they become a priority. Don’t add too many details to Next and Later items as the purpose of this view is to provide a high-level overview of the company’s current priorities.

Who are the relevant stakeholders for this view?

This view is great for external audiences or internal ones that don’t usually get to see the product roadmap as it offers a general perspective on the product’s upcoming objectives. It should not be displayed to executives as it doesn’t connect the prioritization to the company’s OKRs.

What outcomes should I expect from using this view?

This view gives you an easy to understand, high level overview of your product roadmap that you can use to share your plans with others. It offers a clearcut presentation of your priorities without getting bogged down in the details.

What’s the origin of the Now/Next/Later prioritization view?

The Now/Next/Later roadmap was invented by Janna Barstow. She invented this roadmap when she realized the problematic nature of committing to specific timelines. The Now/Next/Later roadmap was created to offer a strategic communication roadmap without a timeline embedded inside of it.

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