Release notes

Add Dovetail tags to a whiteboard

Following on from the initial release of the Dovetail integration earlier this week, we’ve expanded the range of content you can import from Dovetail on to a whiteboard in Qualdesk.

You can now add:

  • highlights arranged by tag group – do this by importing a Highlights file
  • tags themselves – do this by importing a Tags file

To do this:

1 Export your Dovetail highlights or tags

From your Dovetail project, click Settings at the bottom left, and then choose Export from the menu.

Under Export all highlights or Export all tags, click Download.

Dovetail export

2 Upload your Dovetail highlights file to Qualdesk

Upload Dovetail highlights to see them on the whiteboard

In the Content sidebar, click Dovetail and then either drag and drop your Dovetail highlights file, or click to browse and choose it from your downloads folder.

3 Run your affinity mapping session

Dovetail affinity mapping on a whiteboard in Qualdesk

You can invite your team, create new groups, and use timers, voting and the ready button (free confetti included) to keep your workshop running smoothly.

Dovetail integration for affinity mapping and team collaboration

You can now get your Dovetail highlights and tags on to a digital whiteboard so that you can:

  • collaborate live with your team
  • do affinity mapping and other similar synthesis exercises on a freeform canvas

This is ideal for any team using Dovetail to manage user research analysis and data.

To get started:

1 Export your Dovetail highlights in CSV format

Dovetail export

From your Dovetail project, click Settings at the bottom left, and then choose Export from the menu.

Under Export all highlights, click Download.

Be sure to export the highlights file – we don’t yet support the other formats.

2 Upload your Dovetail highlights file to Qualdesk

Upload Dovetail highlights to see them on the whiteboard

In the Content sidebar, click Dovetail and then either drag and drop your Dovetail highlights file, or click to browse and choose it from your downloads folder.

3 Run your affinity mapping session

Dovetail affinity mapping on a whiteboard in Qualdesk

You can invite your team, create new groups, and use timers, voting and the ready button (free confetti included) to keep your workshop running smoothly.

New to content bundles: Jira epics and Linear projects

As promised, we’ve added more content bundles for Jira and Linear.

You can now browse bundles by Jira epic: after choosing a Jira project, you’ll see a bundle for each epic containing all of its child issues, ready to add to your Qualdesk board.

Likewise for Linear, browsing by Linear project shows you options to populate your Qualdesk board with issues from a Linear project.

Dragging and dropping issues assigned to a Jira Epic

As before, you can start a new board from these new bundles, or simply drag-and-drop them from the sidebar on an existing board.

Drag ready-made bundles of Linear issues on to a whiteboard

If you’re using Qualdesk with Linear, you can now drag and drop bundles of Linear content on to the board from the sidebar, or start a new board with Linear content already on it.

Dragging and dropping bugs from Linear onto a whiteboard

You can choose from:

  • all of the issues in the active cycle
  • all issues still to do
  • all issues in progress
  • all issues that are done
  • all bugs still to do
  • urgent issues

and we’ll be adding more options over the coming weeks.

Start a whiteboard with Jira issues

If you’re using Qualdesk with Jira, you can now create a Qualdesk board with Jira issues already on it, making it even quicker to start your team meeting or working session.

Here is how quickly we start our bug grooming session using this feature:

You can choose from:

  • all of the issues in the active sprint
  • all issues still to do
  • all issues in progress
  • all issues that are done
  • all bugs still to do

and we’ll be adding more options over the coming weeks.

Click Start a new private board in the workspace screen or Start a new shared board in a team to get started.

Tidy up your whiteboard

One click is all it takes to tidy up 🪄

You can now organize your sticky notes, cards (and anything) on a Qualdesk board with a single click. Use the tidy button in the mini sidebar to keep things neatly aligned.

Group actions for Linear: run realtime, visual, multiplayer workflows

The Linear integration in Qualdesk now supports group actions.

Groups with actions allow you to create your own visual workflows on a whiteboard, and move issues through them with your team.

  1. Add Linear issues to a cycle: this makes cycle planning (or sprint planning) and other team management activities more interactive – everyone can see what each other is doing.
  2. Assign Linear issues: this allows you to allocate tasks to specific people on your team.
  3. Set Linear issue status: this allows you to move issues from the Backlog to To Do, In Progress, and Done. This is ideal for building Kanban boards for Linear, or any other situation where you want to keep track of where things are, like a daily standup.
  4. Set Linear issue priority: for backlog grooming or any other prioritization exercise, this allows you to work together with your team to discuss, agree and update priorities in realtime.
  5. Convert sticky notes and cards to Linear: ideal for user story mapping or other planning exercises. Add and agree stories in Qualdesk, and then drop them into a group to convert them to issues in Linear.

As with all group actions in Qualdesk, you can work with one Linear issue at a time, or as many as you like – just drag and drop.

New group actions for Jira: change status and assign issues

We’ve added two new group actions to the Jira integration in Qualdesk:

  1. Change issue status: this allows you to move issues from to do to in progress, done or any of your custom issue status types in Jira. This is ideal for building workflow boards, including Kanban boards, in Qualdesk
  2. Assign issues: this allows you to allocate tasks to specific people on your team. It’s ideal for sprint planning and other team planning activities.

As with all group actions in Qualdesk, you can work with one card at a time, or as many as you like – just drag and drop.

Ready confetti

Qualdesk ready confetti

Expanding on the ‘Ready’ button we launched back in May, we’ve added a celebratory touch when everyone on a Qualdesk board is ready.

We’ve built an “Everyone‘s ready” pop-up that comes with a sprinkling of confetti, so you know when to move onto the next exercise in your workshop.

Browse, search and filter Linear issues

Filtering Linear issues

You can now filter through all of your team’s issues and hand pick the ones you want to import. And if you find that you missed some important ones – you can get back to the list of them and import a few more.

As always, you can edit them, assign them and change their status and create new ones, directly from your Qualdesk board to keep everything up to date.

Export for Microsoft Excel, Airtable and Apple Numbers in CSV format

You can now right click anywhere on a Qualdesk board to export data in CSV format, making it easy to add to Microsoft Excel, Airtable and Apple Numbers documents.

CSV exports include:

  • the text content of groups, stickies and cards
  • creation and update usernames and timestamps
  • vote counts

If your content is organized into groups, it’ll be grouped in the export. This is perfect for:

  • a retrospective where you want to separate out different types of content, such as good/bad/ugly or start/stop/continue
  • a workshop where you want to assign follow-up actions to specific people
  • an affinity mapping or other user research analysis session where the groups represent specific clusters of data

CSV export complements our direct connection to Google Sheets (which is even easier – check it out) and gives you a ton of flexibility in the way that you take data from Qualdesk to other places.

As always, we’d love to hear your feedback, and thanks to those of you who’ve already provided input into this feature.

Groups with Actions

Configuring action for a group

Whiteboards are brilliant for team activities due to their flexibility. However, the whiteboard itself is rarely the ‘result’ of the meeting. That usually is an agreement, a list of tasks or actions, that need to be stored in your team’s system of record. At Qualdesk we aim to make acting on those systems of record possible directly from your whiteboard.

That’s why today we introduce Groups with Actions. As the name suggests – they’re just like normal groups. You can draw them on the whiteboard and drag items into them or you can select a bunch of items and group them.

What happens next, is special. You select what action should that group represent – set a sprint, change epic or convert all stickies into bugs in Jira. From this moment on, all items in the group will have the action applied to them, no matter if they were in the group from the start or they are added by you or your team later.

This is an extremely powerful tool for creating ‘human-powered automation’, enabling your team to start actions by dragging items on the board. We use it for our sprint planning, with designated groups for bugs, next sprint and some pre-defined epics. This way everyone in the team can take part in planning, and it’s all as easy as moving cards around.

We’re launching just with Jira actions, as it’s the most popular system among our users, but Linear, Trello, and even some custom integrations are already in progress. We can’t wait to see what you will use them for!

Templates

Use a template to start a meeting quickly in Qualdesk

Templates make it easy to get started with a variety of different meeting and workshop formats, and we’ve just launched our first set of templates in Qualdesk.

We’re starting with retrospective templates, and over the coming weeks we’ll add templates for other parts of the agile process as well as ideation, brainstorming, user research and more.

Our retrospective templates include:

When you create a new board in Qualdesk, you now have the choice to:

  • create an empty board
  • create a board using a template

You can customize templates as much as you like to fit your own processes and ways of working.

Some parts of a templates might be locked when you first create your board. To edit or remove these, click the Unlock button in the mini-sidebar.

If you’d like to lock them again in preparation for your meeting, select the items you’d like to lock, right click on them and choose Lock from the menu.

If there are templates you’d like to see in Qualdesk, or customizations you’d like to save, please get in touch – we’d love to hear from you.

Add images to Qualdesk boards

Images on a Qualdesk board

You can now upload images to Qualdesk boards, including:

  • photos (perfect for design and user research)
  • screenshots (comment and annotate, and create follow-up actions in Google Sheets, Jira, Linear or Trello)
  • diagrams for meetings, discussions and workshops
  • animated GIFs for, well, whenever

To upload an image, you can:

  • drag and drop an image file from your computer
  • paste an image by pressing ⌘V or ^V
  • click the Upload image button in the toolbar

Stack sidebar for retrospectives and brainstorming

During a retrospective, brainstorming workshop or ideation exercise, it’s often helpful to split the task into two sections:

  • individual work, where you have time and privacy to get your thoughts on paper (or virtual paper in this case)
  • team work, where you discuss as a group and agree follow-up actions

We’ve launched a new feature in Qualdesk called the stack to make this easy.

Open the stack by clicking the stack icon in the mini-sidebar, and then type away. Press return to create a new sticky or card, and pick your preferred color from the palette at the bottom.

The stack sidebar gives you a place to work privately

When you’re ready to work with your team, you can drag and drop sticky notes and cards from the sidebar to the board:

Drag and drop from the stack sidebar to the board

and then work with your team as usual:

Drag and drop from the stack sidebar to the board

Your team members will only see items from your stack once you’ve placed them on the board.

Don’t forget that you can record your follow-up actions directly in Google Sheets, Jira, Linear and Trello.

Beacon

Beacon showing user’s location on Qualdesk board

It’s often helpful to be able to show other people what you’re looking at when you’re working as a team on a Qualdesk board.

You can now long press anywhere on a board to set a beacon. Everyone else will get a notification and can click to come to where you are.

Particularly handy now that Qualdesk boards are 4× bigger.

Ready button

Qualdesk ready button

“Is everyone ready?”

Now you can let everyone on your Qualdesk board know when you’re ready, need more time or have an idea.

Perfect for retrospectives, brainstorming and all sorts of creative workshops (and less creative meetings).

Increased board size

We increased the default size of our boards. No matter if you are working on something by yourself or running a retrospective with a team of 20, you should find enough space for all your content on our new bigger boards. All new boards are created in the new size.

Log in with Google

Log in with Google

You can now log in to Qualdesk with a Google account. This should make it much easier to access your boards, without having to switch to your email client.

If you already have a Qualdesk account, you can use Log in with Google to access it, as long as it’s using the same email address – we will do all the magic on our side to make it work.

New action toolbar

New ways of taking action in Qualesk

Cards on Qualdesk boards can represent many different types of data. There are stickies and cards, which are useful for information that doesn’t belong in any other tool, but there are also Jira, Linear, Trello and Google Sheets cards, that are directly linked to data from those tools.

Apart from that representation, and being able to move them freely around the board, you can also take action on each and every single one of them. Change sprint in Jira, change assignee in Trello or edit labels in Linear. All those actions were hidden in the context menu, but we know they're as important as other things you can do with Qualdesk.

We introduced a new toolbar, that is always visible with actions that you can take on currently selected items. No need to visit Linear to move that forgotten issue into the next cycle.

Undo

Undo

When working in a free-form environment, we don’t want anyone to be worried about making mistakes. That’s why we introduced the very simple and powerful command that we all know from all other software - undo. Now you can easily roll back your last action (and then the previous one, and the one before that, and so on…).

As long as your actions haven’t been overwritten by someone else on your team, you can undo them.

Connect to Linear

Browsing your linear content

We enabled our Linear connection for everyone, to make Qualdesk work for more product teams. It works just like any of our other integrations – you can hand pick which tickets you want to put on a board, and you can edit or take actions in Linear, directly from Qualdesk.

If you love Linear and want to help us make this integration even better, send us a message @Qualdesk or product@qualdesk.io.

New connections experience

Connecting external software to Qualdesk

At the core of Qualdesk is the concept of letting you work in a flexible environment, with data from software you and your team are using. To make the task of synchronizing your data easier, we redesigned our connections experience from scratch.

Starting with Jira, you can now filter through all of your team’s tickets and hand pick which ones you want to import. And if you find that you missed some important ones – you can get back to the list of them and import a few more. As always, you can edit them, assign them and change their status and create new ones, directly from your Qualdesk board to keep everything up to date.

Team workspaces

Managing boards and teams

To make it easier to find and organise your Qualdesk boards we introduced Teams and team permissions. You can keep boards visible to you or share them with your team when you feel ready. And as the list of your boards grows bigger, you can sort and search to get to the one you're looking for.