Kanban is an Agile methodology and is often confused with Scrum and other modern product development frameworks.
What is Kanban?
Kanban is a system developed by Toyota to improve the efficiency of their production and production planning just in time (Just in Time-JIT). The purpose of this system is to limit the accumulation of redundant work at a point in production, which will reduce the number of defects and distraction of teams, and this will increase their productivity.
Translated Kan = map, Ban = signal. A signal tells the supplier to produce and deliver a new shipment/product when the material is consumed. The card is a task that the team must complete.
The Kanban Card
This card can contain the name of the task, a description, the name of the employee who will work on it, and the time for which it will be created. The cards are placed on a Kanban board. This board can be both a wooden board and software. It consists of columns, each of which contains a certain number of cards. The maximum number of cards in a column must be predetermined by the team so that there is no accumulation of work at a given stage. Each column has a name that is associated with a stage of production. Using a dashboard allows team members to see the progress of the work at any time.
The name and number of columns are determined by the team. In the example, I gave: In the Product Backlog, like Scrum, all the tasks that need to be performed for a product are set. In progress – the tasks that are currently being worked on. Testing – testing tasks for defects. Approved – tasks are waiting for approval from someone. Production – launched for production / use.
Tasks in Kanban can be written on sticky notes
Tasks can be written on sticky notes, which are moved after the work is done in a given column. Moving occurs sequentially from left to right without missing columns. When the slip reaches the last column, it is removed from the board and this means that the work on this task is completed.
The more complex a production is, the more steps we will have, which means more columns on the dashboard. A balance must be sought between productivity, security and simplicity.
Kanban board can be implemented with many software tools, the most popular of which are: Jira, Trello, Meister Task, and others. The principle of operation is the same as already described. To have traceability of the process when using any of the software, it must be installed on the computers of the employees. The advantage of the software over the wooden board is that it automatically restricts us from adding cards to a column when we reach a preset maximum value.
What is the Scrum framework
Scrum is another Agile framework. The difference between Scrum and Kanban is that Scrum has sprints and roles (Product Owner, Scrum Master). There are none in Kanban. What the two have in common are the self-organizing teams. Reference: Kanban vs. Scrum: What Are the Differences Between Scrum and Kanban EduWiki.me, 2020
The Scrum board
The Scrum board looks the same as the Kanban board. The difference is that the tasks set at the beginning are tasks that could be completed in a sprint. Reference: Why do organizations not use the Scrum framework intentionally? Agile Programming, ISSN 2652-5925 2020 Vol 1
Which and how many tasks will be determined by the Scum team of Sprint Planning. After the sprint is over, the board is cleaned and the tasks for the next sprint are set. In Kanban, the dashboard is used continuously throughout the development cycle, simply by changing the cards.
This is a brief description of Scrum and Kanban. I will be available if you have any questions and I will be happy to help you if you decide to delve into the subject.
Scrum vs Kanban
My opinion is that we should introduce Scrum as a way of working. I believe that this will help the organization to cope with complex tasks and problems. Scrum is suitable for us, as it will allow us to meet and adapt to changes that occur in the process of work, without compromising the efficiency and quality of the final product. On the contrary, it helps to increase them, and this will increase customer satisfaction. How does this happen?
Transparency in Scrum
With transparency, inspection, and adaptation – the three pillars of Scrum. There are many practices and events in the scrum that help us adhere to the three pillars. Reference: Why use the Scrum framework, and why not in your projects? Bpedia.org, 2020
Yeah, they’re like that:
Sprint planning – all roles in the Scrum team participate, which implies the most accurate planning of goals in the upcoming sprint.
Daily meeting – a short morning meeting of the team to check the progress and share problems if they have arisen.
Sprint review – a meeting of the team with the clients, where it is demonstrated what has been done and we receive valuable feedback from them, helping us for the next planning. Reference: What is Sprint Review, Scrum.org
Sprint retrospective – discussion in the team in which problems and difficulties in the work process are analyzed and measures are taken to overcome them.
My opinion is that to introduce Scrum in our company, we must first organize a course for employees in which they can learn Scrum values, practices, and events in detail.