Manage Ideas

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As a product manager, you may use ideas to create features and stories in Rally. To make this process easier, categorize ideas and monitor idea activity.

When features are in progress or are ready for release, you can use Rally Idea Manager to communicate updates to the community.

Managing ideas includes:

Change the status of an idea

Administrators can change the status of an idea to communicate to the idea's submitter that the idea is moving ahead in the process, or that it has changed in priority.

There are several ways to change the status of an idea:

  • One idea at a time
  • Through a batch update based upon the Schedule State of a linked story in Rally

When you change the status of an idea, all subscribers to the idea are notified by email.

Update the status for a single idea

Trigger a batch status update for all ideas linked to Rally stories

When you trigger a batch update, statuses for all ideas with active links to Rally stories are updated based on the criteria that the site administrator set up for the integration to Rally.

Edit an idea

Administrators can change information about ideas after they are posted. Idea editing must be enabled from the Setup tab.

You will see information about your idea post:

Click Edit Idea to add or change tags, or to edit idea information (other than comments). Click Update Idea to save your changes.

Organize ideas

As a product manager, you need to organize ideas in a way that provides value to your site and company. Organizing ideas can include tasks such as:

Manage duplicate ideas

Even though the duplicate checker searches for duplicate or similar ideas already entered, some duplicate ideas may exist. To manage duplicate ideas, you can:

Set up idea list tabs

Click the Idea List Tabs page to create customizable tabs by status or activity. For each tab, specify the name and type. Types include:

  • Featured – Ideas selected by the administrator.
  • Genius – Based on ideas from users who have commented or voted on ideas you have commented or voted on. For promotion votes only. Genius only displays for users whose ideas have been commented or voted on by other users.
  • Most active
  • My Favorites – This only displays when users have marked ideas as their favorites . You must set up this tab and enable My Favorites on the ideas page in order for users to use this tab.
  • New
  • Random – A random mix of different ideas.
  • Status
  • Tag cloud

Select Featured ideas

Add an idea to the Featured view to highlight its value. The Featured status must first be enabled before adding ideas to the Featured view.

Change the category of an idea

To change the category to which an idea is already assigned:

  1. For the idea you want to change, click the Edit Idea link.
  2. On the editor, click the arrow on the drop-down box of the Select a Category (Required):* field, then select the category you wish to use.
  3. Click Update Idea.

Change and add tags to an idea

To change or add tags to which an idea is already assigned:

  1. For the idea you want to change, click the Edit Idea link.
  2. Add or edit tags in the Please list tags related to your submission field.
    Multiple tags must be separated by a space.
  3. Click Update Idea.

View idea counts

See which ideas are getting the most views by users.

  1. From the Ideas tab, click the Ideas page.
  2. Select the Idea View Count checkbox.
  3. Click Save Changes.

Promote an idea to a story in Rally

When you decide to implement an idea, you can quickly promote the idea to a story within Rally Software. You can connect an idea to a new story or to an existing story. You can also connect multiple ideas to a story.

Each association and dissociation between an idea and a story creates a discussion entry on the story and the URL of the idea. This is particularly useful if there is more than one idea associated with one story.

  1. Open the idea you wish to promote.
  2. In the Connect idea to a Rally user story box, select the workspace and the project you wish to use.
  3. Specify whether to create a new user story or connect to an existing user story.
  4. Click Go.
  5. To view your new story in Rally, click the story link.

Once your idea is entered in Rally Software, there are three Rally Idea Manager-specific fields which can help the development team view key information about the idea:

  • Idea URL: An active link to the idea in Rally Idea Manager. Use this link to view comments and other information.
  • Note: More than one idea can be linked to a story, but only the first assigned idea URL field displays in this field. When multiple ideas are linked to a story, you can access the idea URLs in the discussion area.

  • Notes: Indicates which user created the story in Rally Software. This area also specifies the idea site from where the idea came.
  • Idea Votes: An up-to-date number of the votes the idea has received.

Only the idea's name and description are populated in Rally. Other custom or required fields you may have set up in Rally Idea Manager do not display in a linked Rally story.

Promote multiple or complex stories to Rally

Often, an idea is too complex to be promoted to just one user story. You may encounter one of these scenarios:

  • There are several different but related ideas
  • An idea is too large and complex to be implemented in a single user story

Create a parent story and assign the similar ideas or break down the complex idea to child stories.

Specify idea details

Set up default information for posting and managing ideas.

The Ideas tab has seven pages:

  • Ideas
  • Voting
  • Categories
  • Statuses
  • Idea list tabs
  • Submission form
  • Idea import

Specify idea details

Use the Ideas page to set up features related to ideas. Specify what fields to check for duplicates, what actions to allow for community members, and whether to allow demote voting in addition to promote voting.

Select the My Favorites checkbox to enable users to assign ideas to their My Favorites list. You must also set up My Favorites as an idea list tab.

Enable voting

If you enable voting, you can choose to use simple or chip voting. With chip voting, specify the number of chips allotted per user and the number of chips a user can give to a single idea. Chips can be returned to the user once an idea they have voted on have reached a specific status.

Note: Enabling chip voting will reset all existing votes to zero.

Set up categories

Use the Categories page to set up the categories from which you will choose when organizing ideas. The character limit for a category name is 50; however, Rally recommends you limit the name to 30 characters or it will be cut off in the dashboard's Category Distribution chart.

Set up statuses

Use the Statuses page to set up statuses that you will use to communicate the progress of ideas to community members.

Customize the submission form

Use the Submission Form page to customize the submission form used by community members to post ideas. To make changes to the form, click the Edit Form icon.

  • To add a question, click Add Question, then select the format for your question. Specify your details on the form that is presented and click Done to save your changes.
  • To edit a question, click the Edit link to the right of the question. Click Done to save your changes.
  • To remove a question, click the Remove Question link to the right of the question.
  • To change the order of questions, move them up or down on the page by dragging the blue bar to the left of the question. Click Save Order to save your changes.

Bulk upload ideas

Use the Idea Import page to bulk import ideas. Download the provided Excel template and populate it with idea attributes, save idea, and upload the spreadsheet to the system. Fields in the spreadsheet include:

  • Title
  • Description
  • Submitted date
  • Submitter email
  • Category
  • Status
  • Anonymous
  • Visible
  • Describe the value
  • Tags

Hide or update an idea

You may want to hide an idea, change an idea, or add tags. To use this feature, your must first enable idea editing.

You will see information about the idea post:

  • Click Add Tag to add more tags to the idea.
  • Click Edit Idea to change tags or to edit idea information (other than comments). Make your updates and click Update Idea to save them.
  • Click Hide Idea to remove the idea from searches, lists and filters. Use this to hide idea posts that may be inappropriate. Hidden ideas are not included in reports or on the dashboard, but are included in community statistics.

View a user's ideas

You can view all the ideas an individual user has entered.

The Ideas section contains a list with links to all the ideas an individual user has entered. The list also specifies the status and the number of comments for the idea.


You may download information about ideas, users, idea interest by company, and login history from Rally Idea Manager. Downloaded data from the last 30 days is saved in .xls files where you have set up for downloads on your computer.

Hidden ideas are not reported.

Download ideas information

Select the Ideas page to download information about ideas and status change history.

You can use date range filters for the following reports:

  • Ideas
  • Idea Status Change History
  • Idea Interest by Company

Download all ideas

Select any of the checkboxes as needed to include user profile data, submission form data, and idea comments.

The Score column on the report reflects the number of votes an idea has received. For example, an idea with 10 positive votes has a score of 10, and an idea with 10 positive votes and one negative vote has a score of 9.

Download idea status change history

Use this report to view the status history of ideas.

Download idea interest by company

Use this report to view which company is interested in which ideas. After you open this report in Microsoft Excel:

  1. Enter the company name in cell A1. Note: Look in columns K or L to see how the company name is represented in the report, which is the company's email domain minus ".com."
  2. Select column A.
  3. From the Data menu, select Filter.
  4. In cell A1, select the Filter drop-down and deselect the FALSE value.

Download user activity

Click the Users page to download information about users and their activity on the site. This includes the number of ideas and comments posted, last login date, and voting statistics. Specify whether to include user profile information.

Download login history

Click the Login History page to download information about login activity on the site. Specify whether to include user profile information.

Download categories

Click the Categories page to download information on the number of ideas assigned to each category.

Share idea links

In order to encourage other users to comment on or promote your ideas, you can email them a link to the idea. Only administrators have access to the vanity URL necessary for sending links to ideas.

Append the idea's ID to the URL. For example,

Note: You can advertise this URL by displaying it in one of the guidance panels.


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