As VP Product Management at Elements, I would like to share a use-case that has nothing to do with Salesforce but is the epitome of the ‘Configuration Knowledge Platform’ value proposition.
You see, JIRA is a nightmare. JIRA has the configuration flexibility and richness of Salesforce (well, close enough) but zero change governance. In short, imagine having to do pretty complex Salesforce configuration changes straight in production, live. That is the experience of configuring JIRA. We are currently in the middle of doing some important process transformation which involves serious JIRA reconfiguration. Suffice it to say, I was terrified of touching it. But I decided to create an Elements Reference Model (think Salesforce org Model but for a 3rd party system) and go through the process of documenting what we use, where, how and what we plan to use, to get a better sense of what is required and how things work.
Here is the result
This makes it sooo much easier to understand what I am up against. I am even adding JIRA support articles around different features as documentation to make it easier for myself.
BTW, this is not the first time created a Ref Model to document a configuration. We use SurveyAnyplace to build the Org Assessment report. And once again, the system is super complex to configure and you are forced to do changes live in production. Also, we haven’t updated Org Assessment in months and I obviously don’t remember how we configured it. But we did document this as a ref model (including dependencies captured in node descriptions). Which means when and if we need to change something, we will know all the impact upfront and can plan accordingly.
Bottom line It is not just Salesforce. There are so many products out there which are complex, extremely configurable and have no sandboxes or governance pipeline (and obviously no visibility of dependencies) – like Pardot, Tableau or Slack.com. And in situations like this the Elements Configuration Knowledge Platform is a godsend. Yes, it is a manual/semi-automated process but so worth the effort.
Here’s how to build a Ref Model – HELP TOPIC – including an example of building a Pardot Ref Model