Whiteboard tool for retrospectives

Should I use whiteboard tools for retrospectives?

Do you want to conduct a retrospective and use a whiteboard tool for it? – Then you've come to the right place.

We shed light on whether and when whiteboard tools are suitable for retrospectives. We look at the advantages and disadvantages of whiteboard tools and find out whether the providers "Miro" or "Mural" are good retro tools.

Should I use whiteboard tools for retrospectives?

(When) Are whiteboard tools used for retrospectives?

Basically, you can say that whiteboard tools such as Miro and Mural are popular tools for retrospectives and are used accordingly. But before you blindly start holding your retrospectives with a whiteboard tool, you should be aware of the advantages, disadvantages and alternatives:

Advantages of whiteboard tools in retrospectives:

The popularity of whiteboard tools doesn't come from nowhere. Here are the biggest advantages at a glance:

  • Habit: We are already familiar with working with whiteboards from the past. The basic idea comes from physical whiteboards, which have been used since time immemorial.
  • Versatility: With a blank whiteboard, a (digital) pen and a few sticky notes, you can put together just about anything. 
  • Digital advantages: In addition to the advantages of a whiteboard, digital tools offer benefits such as: Templates, storage options, remote access, integrations, etc.

Disadvantages of whiteboard tools in retrospectives:

Whiteboard tools therefore offer a high degree of flexibility and can be used for many applications. However, this flexibility results in disadvantages that can be particularly disruptive for retrospective applications:

  • Clutter: Particularly with large boards with lots of sticky notes, the collected data can quickly become unstructured and make work more difficult.
  • Complexity: A tool for EVERYTHING quickly becomes a tool for NOTHING. Many functions and options that are not relevant for retrospectives weaken the quality.
  • Framelessness: The lack of a framework makes the preparation, implementation and moderation of a retrospective more difficult.

So if your retros with whiteboard tools are hampered by confusion and operating problems, a tool specially developed for retrospectives such as Echometer is certainly a promising alternative for you.

Should I use whiteboard tools for retrospectives?

If your team is already used to Mural or Miro and is familiar with the tool, it may also make sense to use this whiteboard tool for retrospectives. 

However, if your team is struggling with the constantly growing range of functions of Miro and Mural, it would be a good option to look for a tool dedicated to retrospectives.

Retro tools offer the following advantages over whiteboard tools such as Miro or Mural:

  • Significantly less preparation time thanks to customizable retro template library
  • Simpler moderation thanks to clear guidelines and retro steps
  • Pre-surveys for clearer feedback and time savings in the team
  • Whiteboards as a sub-function for break-out sessions
  • Many other features that are optimized for retrospectives

So if you are looking for an optimal tool for smooth retrospectives and would like to try out such a tool, you can test Echometer for free with more than 50 retro templates here:

Alternatively, you can also take a look at our comparison of different Reto tools here: Retro Tool Comparison

Example retro template in Echometer: Psychological safety

Health-Check questions:

These questions are answered on a scale (1-5):

I regularly receive useful feedback on how good my performance is and how I can improve.

If a team member makes a mistake, they are not judged for it.

You're allowed to not know things in our team.

In conflicts, we talk on a factual level, so that no one feels personally attacked or judged.

Open feedback questions:

What else do we want to talk about?

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Need a team boost? Do this: The Spotify Health Check Retrospective!

First Health question: "😍 We love going to work, and have great fun working together."

Sounds good? Try our retro tool for free below.

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