How does SCTI prioritize requests?

The following is an outline of the process SCTI will use to prioritize bugs, requests for new features, and assistance with using the software.

  1. Assign a score of ‘A’, ‘B’, ‘C’ or ‘D’ based on the Impact/Effort (IE) Matrix (see below).
  2. Assign a Project Manager from the SCTI team.
  3. Schedule time to complete the issue (except maybe issues with Impact-Effort Score D).
  4. If issue is time-sensitive (a wildlife conservation or management decision needs to be made imminently), and the requestor needs some kind of change to the software in order to get the functionality they need, consider elevating the Impact-Effort Score (e.g., if the I-E Score is ‘B’, consider changing it to ‘A’).
  5. If additional funding is available, consider changing a:
    1. ‘B’ to an ‘A’
    2. ‘C’ to an ‘A’
    3. ‘D’ to a ‘C’ or a ‘B’
  6. Monitor projects with I-E Score of ‘B’ and ‘C’ so that progress is made on ‘B’ projects and ‘C’ projects don’t remain in the pending category forever. At least once a month, step through task list to review the status and update priorities.
  7. Evaluate new requests and set their priority on a weekly basis.
  8. Record new requests and their I-E Scores using a project-management software tool (Jira) with descriptive text.
  9. Assign each issue to one of these categories:
    1. Strategic Goals for features that accomplish actions in our Strategic Plan. These are features that will significantly advance our overall objectives and Mission.
    2. Community Requests for features our Community actively ask for. The features they want the most. We won’t necessarily implement every suggestion as our priority will be set using the methods described above.
    3. Community Delights for features that aren’t necessarily being asked for, but that SCTI thinks the community would value and that might literally delight them.
  10. Produce a quarterly report that shows all projects, their priority settings, due dates and progress, and distribute the report to SCTI’s Advisory Group.


  • Impact can mean on Community use and conservation reach, achieving steps in our Strategic Plan, or recognizing new openings and opportunities.

  • How many species, programs, and people would be affected or helped by the change?

  • Does it help serve any of our other strategic objectives, like professional development or community engagement?

  • Program- or species-specific collaborations are difficult to fit into the priority scheme because they’re not directly related to training or building software, but they fit within our strategic objectives. When we choose to do these projects, we should make sure there is an explanation for how they meet SCTI objectives in our reporting and other communication.


  • Does the SCTI team member(s) best suited to take on the project have the time available to tackle it, without needing to disrupt or terminate ongoing projects of possibly greater priority?

  • Is SCTI the best organization to tackle this need? Can we work with or even contract out to a partner to complete the project?

The Impact-Effort Matrix