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5 Reasons to use Kanban in Project Management

August 22, 2018 by

Project Management is a dynamic process with multiple facets needing re-categorizing on a regular (and often irregular) basis.

A task’s importance or stage in the workflow can easily be escalated/de-escalated a number of times within hours. This can lead teams to focus on individual tasks and lose focus of other work items within the project.  A wonderful way of simplifying these ever-changing workflows is presenting your project lifecycle on a Kanban board.

 

On-demand webinar recording: Introducing Boards for BrightWork – Visualize your work in SharePoint

 

Kanban translates to “visual signal” and originated on the Toyota factory floor in the 1940s.

The Kanban framework focuses on ‘cards’ presented on ‘Boards’. Boards are made of a series of columns in which cards are moved depending on their status within the project. Kanban is popular amongst Agile development teams as it allows:

  • Flexibility
  • Focus on continuous delivery
  • Reduction of wasted work / wasted time
  • Increased productivity
  • Increased efficiency
  • Team members’ ability to focus.

 

5 Reasons to use Kanban in Project Management

1. Streamline task allocation

Kanban offers the ideal system to visually organize your project by work packages, key deliverables, or to some lifecycle (e.g. a software development lifecycle or a new product lifecycle). Cards are created for tasks or deliverables and assigned to a team member according to expertise or availability. Kanban helps you visualize your Work Breakdown Structure clearly and logically.

 

2. Add visibility to your project.

A huge advantage of the Kanban method is its transparency for all team members. Team members are empowered by visualizing their own tasks in the context of the overall effort.

By displaying all cards at once, teams are can easily communicate in real time and are encouraged to self-organize based on the availability of resources.

 

3. Engage team members of all abilities

Virtual Kanban Boards use drag-and-drop functionality which offers an ease of use to project team members of all technical abilities. Drag-and-drop negates the anxiety of making a serious mistake with your actions.

Kanban Boards

The result or final location of your movement is instantly visible without clicking through to other web pages, subfolders, or drop-down menus. Reversing your decision is simple.

 

4. Optimize project flow

Studies have shown that multi-tasking is an inefficient process and that it can take a worker up to 14 hours to complete two 5 hour tasks simultaneously. The Kanban framework limits the number of tasks within each stage of the project lifecycle to prevent bottle-necking. With this improved productivity, the cycle time, an important metric within Kanban, is optimized and teams can confidently predict timelines and delivery dates for projects.

 

5. Ditch the sticky-notes!

Who hasn’t sat in a boardroom with their team and a stack of sticky notes, brainstorming the elements required to make their project a reality?

How often are your notes categorized into a series of columns and moved around several times? With virtual, cloud-based Kanban boards, you can save your sticky-notes for your lunch box and, instead enable real-time collaboration with team members working remotely all over the world.

 

 

Micheál Clesham

Micheál is a content creator for the BrightWork marketing team. He is interested in written and visual storytelling with a view to making project management easier.

Outside of work, Micheál likes to find new stories through podcasts, movies, sport and travel.
Micheál Clesham

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