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Sep 09

It’s time to move on: benefits of upgrading from BigPicture 7 to BigPicture 8

Still on the fence about upgrading your organization’s instance of BigPicture to version 8? It’s OK to hesitate. That’s why in this article, we present the key features of BigPicture 8 and 8.1 as well as the benefits they bring. We also address potential concerns that might have been so far stopping you from upgrading your instance of the app. 

Many organizations hesitate to upgrade their software as soon as possible. Some companies and teams are more eager to adopt the new than others. Yet, even among those, certain doubts remain. No wonder – every new version of the app, despite our best efforts to test everything before releasing it to customers – is more error-prone than the versions that have been under development for many months or even years. 

We fully understand that companies don’t want to waste time and money on buggy software. They want polished, reliable products. Well, BigPicture 8 is precisely that. After months of intensive work, an instance of BigPicture 8 can keep up to 100,000 issues and its performance significantly exceeds that of BigPicture 7. In other words, the main concern that our customers voiced in the first weeks following the release of the 8th generation of the system has been sorted.

Unprecedented adaptability and flexibility

The changes, like a rabbit hole, go deeper and deeper. The Programs are no longer a default way to organize your portfolio structure. With BigPicture 8, we introduced Boxes—deeply customizable management spaces to organize your portfolio structure. This is an entirely new, much easier, and more intuitive way to organize management data and combine different approaches in a single portfolio. You can easily combine and blend Classic (Waterfall), Agile (e.g. Scrum, SAFe®, LeSS), and Hybrid initiatives. 

Now, BigPicture can be easily adjusted to a chosen approach. Meanwhile, BigPicture Enterprise goes even further, you can accurately model any approach or framework that exists in your company.

Furthermore, you can create unlimited “what-if” scenarios in the Gantt and Resources modules (the latter from version 8.1), and once you find the most efficient way to proceed with a given ​​initiative – deploy its scenario as the live one. The system adapts to your management style, not the other way around. Lastly, you can integrate BigPicture 8 with Trello and sync them in real-time. Simply put, your teams can keep working with their preferred tools, such as Jira or Trello, while BigPicture gets fuelled with reliable data originating directly from the source – the teams executing specific tasks. On top of that, you can manage the tasks in the integrated instances of task management tools of your teams directly from BigPicture

We fully understand that the abundance of new features can raise concerns about upgrading your instance. Usually, changes like this one, require some additional training. It often discourages companies from upgrading. Fortunately, it’s not the case with BigPicture 8. 

Indeed, changes in BigPicture 8 are massive. Yet, contrary to most management apps, BigPicture does not require extra training to switch between versions. Every new release comes with rich documentation and a series of video tutorials. Besides, in case of any questions or concerns, you can schedule a free video call with one of our implementation consultants, who would be more than happy to analyze your business case and explain how to use BigPicture for maximum productivity. If you are still not sure whether BigPicture 8 would work for you, play with our open demo instance of the app and find out for yourself how easy, pleasant, and effective managing work can be.

What else do you get from BigPicture 8 and 8.1? 

The list of new features is quite long. With BigPicture 8, we introduced a completely new Gantt module that displays the critical path and what-if scenarios. There is also a new module—Overview, a command center for all your initiatives and portfolios. You can now generate neat, informative reports (also at the portfolio level), and manage work on a smart Calendar grid. But most importantly, and we can’t stress it enough, BigPicture 8 allows for the integration of Hybrid, Agile, and Waterfall approaches to management, which makes it the only system you would ever need before, during, and after agile transformation

BigPicture 8.1 makes the initiative navigation and creation even simpler. How? For instance, through easier module switching, use of breadcrumbs or automatic name suggestions when creating a new management space. 

We also added a new display mode—the Dark Mode – and custom color themes. 

BigPicture 8.1 offers more automation and seamless integration of different approaches, and right now it’s our most powerful tool.

FAQ

How can I upgrade to BigPicture 8?

It’s simple; just check out the article about preparing for the whole process. If you are migrating your Jira Server to the Data Center hosting model, it’s also an excellent opportunity to upgrade your BigPicture products.

Will I lose my settings? Who can help me with an upgrade? 

BigPicture 8 is fully compatible with the previous version. Programs created in BigPicture 7 are transferable to version 8, but the private mode, available in BigPicture 7, has been discontinued. For more information, please contact our support team. 

BigPicture 7 offers me stability and good performance. Is the new version of BigPicture equally stable and reliable? 

Yes, the new version and its instances are fully functional, and, more importantly, the performance is stable.   

How long does the upgrade from BigPicture 7 to BigPicture 8 take? 

It depends on numerous factors, such as the server’s computing power, the number of active users during the upgrade, and, most importantly, the overall number of tasks (or issues) to be transferred. The bigger the instance, the more time for an upgrade is needed. We strongly recommend scheduling the upgrade for non-business hours. Also, it’s vital to backup your database before the upgrade. 

What if I don’t like BigPicture 8? Can I downgrade to version 7? 

Yes, but downgrading to an older version of our product is neither recommended nor supported. In some cases, it may cause severe problems with your instance of BigPicture.  

Opinions: 

This app definitively completes BigPicture PPM and makes Jira + BigPicture the best tool available today for those who want to manage their projects and programs in a simple, fast and professional way. In the last two years, considerable improvements in the interface have made SoftwarePlant’s products excel in terms of usability. An example to be taken as a reference for many other Jira plugin developers – Calogero Bonasia on BigPicture Enterprise [date: 2021-08-14, Cloud Version] 

Great app for creating a good, solid, and easy-to-use roadmap for teams. The assistance with the app is also fast and on point – Arama Mihai [date: 2021-05-14, Server Version] 

About The Author

Content Specialist @SoftwarePlant since 2021. He was previously working for the biggest media outlets in Poland, e.g., Wirtualna Polska, Rzeczpospolita, where he was writing about video games, biotechnology, and startups. Now he explores the vast world of Agile and Hybrid approaches. Loves good research, short sentences, and clear communication.