Atlassian has had a solid climb from humble beginnings to near ubiquity in software development teams. Built on a foundation of easy to use and a focus on how Teams work together was a right place, right time message. It has placed them in the leader’s quadrant in our Enterprise Agile MQ (clients see: http://gtnr.it/2vVOwlO) and we have found in calls that often Jira is now the pivot point for the AD life-cycle portion of the stack (migrating away from IBM and HPE as prior “it needs to integrate to….” components) and this has helped drive a solid marketplace.
Summit this year really hammered on the message around TEAM. The message here is solid dealing with how you keep from creating silos of knowledge and how projects can flow with less friction. Core to this was the announcement of Atlassian Stride a new replacement for their HipChat chat tool, Stride combines many collaborative functions into a single platform. What I like the best is that there is a focus in the tool on Decisions and Actions. By providing first class object support for these concepts the product a) drives focus to conversations: we are trying to drive activity to delivery and b) it provides a great way to “catch-up” when you have been away from the stream. Been on vacation? Maybe you’ve just gone to lunch and the message stream has “blown up”? Stride lets you quickly focus on what actions and decisions have been made.
Outside of this, Summit this year seems more muted than last year’s event. New branding and logos to twist a phrase from The Startup Way: “Customers don’t care about our” (color palette and logos); “they only care if we make their lives better” #thestartupway seemed a bit of a yawn for the audience as did many of the “new features” shown in product key notes. Applause we muted rather than the raucous atmosphere of last year. This carried to the tradeshow floor, still good traffic, but vendors expressed that it seemed a bit flat.
I think this is partially a symptom of the company reaching to broaden its message and audience. This will be an interesting transition. Can a company built on delivering great tools for developers drive that audience while at the same time also crossing into general teamwork or will the message not have the same punch it has had? Or perhaps our thoughts are all on weightier matters or maybe the energy all came from the European customers who now have their own event to go to. The core product, vision, execution are still all there and the tools hold strong potential to make teams lives better.