A kanban board is a type of project management tool that displays tasks to be done in a more visual way. It is also generally used in the agile method.
Kanban boards can be as simple as drawing columns on a wall with headers like “TO DO”, “DOING”, “DONE”. Then on this mural physical kanban board, you can write tasks on sticky notes or other types of small size cards. Each task needs to be completed within the allotted sprint. A sprint, in agile method, is a short period of time usually 2 weeks before a deadline or a completion stage.
It is important not to put too many pending tasks on a project, as it will be impossible to follow up so many tasks. Those same tasks could have changed and evolved with time along with the project scope and orientation. The long term proposal could end up to be too rigid and unsustainable to the project reality.
Displaying tasks to be done in a kanban board is a great way to visualize the tasks to be done and the overall progress of the team. When someone works on a project, he will move his task from one column to another as he completes them. This makes it easier for the rest of the team to know if he is making a headway.
In a kanban board, first determine the tasks to be done in a sprint. Then, you can order them by level of importance. The higher in a column a task is, the higher priority it has. The importance of a task or topic can be relative. For example, you could decide to finish the small tasks that are not so important if the client or project stakeholders prefer. Working on these tasks first allows you to empty the board and make things move forward faster. Or, you could decide to work on more complex tasks of higher values early on to secure the next meeting.
Reordering task priorities are as simple as drag-and-drop. It is one of the great benefits of kanban board - to be able to update them easily.
Kanban methodology allows smoothly updating a task/topic status. Aside from that, it is also very useful as a visual background for stand-up meetings. This type of quick meetings have the objective to distribute tasks, to know where team members are in their tasks and to give a quick help in bottleneck situations.
In a kanban board, you can visually see who does what in a certain project and try to optimize team efforts by assigning tasks in a collaborative and agile way.
Bricks is a project management app for architecture that follows the agile methods. We have integrated the kanban at a central place of the application.
Each project you create in Bricks has a kanban board, one every working group actually.
Each time you create a topic, this topic is visible in a special column of the kanban, the “backlog”. The backlog is the “reverse log” of all tasks to be done. You can also prioritize tasks by moving the more strategic ones on top of the column.
When you decide to include a topic in the current working sprint, you simply drag the topic to the “TO DO” column. You can then assign this task to a project team member, who will get notified of the new assignment automatically.
Each project member move their own tasks to the appropriate columns as they progress in the workflow, until the task is completed and can then be moved to the “DONE” column! It is possible to reorganize the columns order, rename them to fit your working group workflow, and create a new one such as when adding a new step in the workflow.
Each working group of the architecture team has a separate kanban and the members must be given visibility to tasks and projects that they are part of. Every kanban board is specifically designed so that you can manage project permission in a simple but efficient way.