A whole new Cascade experience: Our most significant upgrade ever to your strategy execution platform.
“You can not overtake 15 cars in sunny weather... but you can when it's raining” – Ayrton Senna.
And well if you’ve been observing, the weather has lately been anything but sunny. Since the pandemic hit, the markets around the world have been quite unpredictable… to say the least.
During these times, we’ve been obsessed with how we can help our customers continue to win during these times. How can we help them see results faster from their strategy?
At Strategy Palooza, we introduced an all-new Cascade platform built to do just that. It is the biggest upgrade to Cascade and a result of millions of dollars and thousands of hours invested into our product and technology over the last 12 months.
It wouldn’t be fair if we just rattled out all the new capabilities and “cutting-edge” technologies in this new platform. This upgrade is about getting ready for the future of strategy. This upgrade is about our promise to help you win in this future, and continuously deliver a long list of upgrades as part of our 2024 Product Vision. This upgrade is just the beginning.
What does the future of strategy look like?
To see what’s ahead, let’s take a walk down the years that went by. Working closely with our customers and partners, and learning from thousands of strategies in Cascade, we’ve seen a dramatic shift in what “good strategy” looks like. It’s fair to summarize that Strategy Execution has changed forever, thanks to these 3 seismic shifts in the market:
- Shrinking strategy cycles: Long-term strategic planning is dead. Rapid change and uncertainty have shortened strategy cycles to 2 years. Anything beyond that is brutally rendered out of fashion.
- Strategic focus in more areas of the business to drive sustainable growth: All these years, revenue growth has been the #1 focus for strategy teams across industries. With a focus on making this growth sustainable for the shareholders, areas involving customers, employees, and partners are being strategic.
- The end of linear Strategy Execution: Traditionally, strategy execution has been a linear process lasting 3-5 years. It was possible in a world where you could forecast markets with a certain degree of confidence, know which way your competitors are moving, or believe that generational events like a pandemic wouldn’t disrupt your business. But now, organizations have to be ready for the next change – ready to thrive through it, and not just survive.
Sail through these changes with two key superpowers.
While most strategic plans withered in the face of these changes, the ones that took the crown had two things in common, two superpowers that saved the day:
- Strategic Instinct: The ability to recognize an opportunity and respond to it strategically.
- Fast Adaptability: The ability to monitor change and realign, regroup, and reprioritize when it finally hits.
Why build a new platform?
For years, we’ve enjoyed serving more than 15,000 teams and turning their great visions into reality, even becoming the #1-rated strategy execution platform by a wide margin.
Why, then, would we choose to build a new platform instead of simply rolling out more feature updates to our existing one?
The decision to invest in a new platform enables us to have a more stable architecture with the latest technologies that are more secure, reliable, and fast for enterprises of all sizes. It also gives us the foundation to realize our 2024 Product Vision.
We are delivering never-before-seen capabilities and features daily, and connecting more systems and tools with stronger APIs. All this to help our customers unlock Strategic Instinct and Fast Adaptability for their organizations.
So what’s new?
- Free-tier for small teams: Starting off the celebration, we’re making strategy free for all. For teams with up to 4 members, the new Cascade platform will be free FOREVER.
- Custom strategy and project frameworks: Whether you’re an OKR fan, use Balanced Scorecards, or maybe you mix it up in a custom framework of your choice – customize plans and tracking structures for each department. Be it PMO, Finance, Revenue, Supply Chain, or Operations. They no longer have to be restricted or forced to use popular frameworks, like OKRs, because Silicon Valley says so.
- Team updates: “Are we on track?” doesn’t have to be meetings anymore! Give your teammates a place to share updates on their objectives, plans, and projects without leaving Cascade. Grab a cup of coffee and skim through all the happenings in your organization on one page.
- (Currently building) Horizontal alignment: You already had a way to track individual contributions to the overall company strategy. With this latest release, you can now link your plans, projects, budgets, resources, and dependencies. You can even measure how well your teams and strategies are aligned.
- Focus area deep-dives: Review the health of your focus areas in one place. Get a breakdown by plans, budgets, resources, and people behind each. See something at-risk? Drill down into each piece of work regardless of how many plans it's a part of.
- Risks: Spot risks and challenges in your plans. Report ways to mitigate these risks and their severity to all stakeholders.
- 10-minute dashboard: The new & intuitive dashboard experience will make creating dashboards as smooth as getting a hot knife through butter. Use our library chart templates to create one in less than 10 minutes. Don’t worry though, you can wrangle your data any way you want using custom charts too!
- (Currently building) Reports that build themselves: One-click reports are now a reality. Understand what’s happening in your organization and why without any manual work. See your data along the business context. Make super quick and well-informed decisions.
- Integrations: Get visibility on metrics across teams, geographies, and departments in one place. We connect with your favorite tools like Google Sheets, MS Teams, Outlook, Slack, Salesforce, Power BI, and hundreds more through Zapier and Power Automate.
- Mobile: Keep your plans on track while you sip margaritas on a beach somewhere. Create updates, tag teammates, and make changes on the fly with our intuitive mobile experience.
Plus, a myriad of upgrades that enhance the classic Cascade experience. Reach out to your CSM or Support team at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re a customer. Learn more about all the new and exciting features made available to you in the new Cascade experience.
The best part? You can decide to switch when you want. Try out the new experience without affecting your existing data and workspace, and only when you’re ready for the new experince, move all your data over with the importer feature.
With this release, take a step towards the future of strategy with more confidence. Rest assured, we’ll set you up for success with strategy execution infrastructure designed to help you see results much faster.
Tom & Karim