Today in our series of articles on retrospective, we will look at online tools that could help you work with remote teams. Remote teams are more common than it may seem at first glance, either because of pandemics or because of international teams. Our team at GoodRequest is no exception, so we want to share the online tools we use for retrospective, which we think could benefit you as well.
All the tools you will find in this article are free and do not have trial versions or a limited number of users or retrospectives. Each of the tools also has a paid version, so you can buy various functionalities (and therefore it is possible that you will also come across a trial version.) There are many other tools you can use to support online operation such as video conferencing via Slack or Teams. However, the tools you will find in this article are primarily used only to facilitate the Agile / Scrum Retrospective.
Parabol is a commercial tool for the online Retrospective and is designed to connect remote teams. Each phase of the meeting is created so that the whole team participates in it together. At the same time, the ideas and opinions on the board remain anonymous, which encourages greater openness. The tool is very well structured and therefore the retrospective is quite easy to manage.
At the beginning you can choose the board that suits you and you can also tune the team with a nice icebreaker that is generated automatically. Parabol allows you to send the output of the meeting directly to email or Slack. There is a possible integration with Jira and GitHub.
Overall rating 4.8 / 5
MetroRetro is different in that it does not have a build-in structure that the previous ones have, but it provides almost complete freedom. Everything takes place on one board. There is a possibility to choose from several boards, or to create your own board. It offers a nice interface that is very intuitive. Generated ideas again remain anonymous, in the form of sticky notes. A plus of this tool is that the board is saved automatically, so if necessary, the team can use the "hide notes" function in advance and ideas can be published at the meeting. This way you can save time and use the meeting only for discussion. The disadvantage is that it can only be exported as CSV or Json and is not integrated with other tools. However, just sign in with a Google account and you're ready to go.
Overall rating: 4.7 / 5
Reetro is similar to a tool like Parabol or Retrium, however, it is not as well structured. Like all the tools mentioned above, this one has the ability to set up anonymous ideas, share the board with other team members, create an action item. This tool also has the option of using GIFs, which at first glance seems like a great idea, but care must be taken not to turn the retrospective into GIFspective. :)
Board can be exported as docx, xlsx.
Overall rating 3.6 / 5
FunRetrospective is a tool that is created on Node.js and offers a very simple board. They don't push you into some meeting structure, quite the contrary. The only thing it offers you is a board where you can rewrite the column names as you see fit and you can also change the colors. There is no explicit storage mechanism, but you can return to your board if you copy the url address, or you can export the board in text format.
The advantage is that you can keep a large number of different retrospective formats, the disadvantage is that you still have basically the same, simple board and also don't see how many team members are logged on.
Overall rating 3 / 5