One of the best methodologies to use when you are looking to have great results in project Management is Jira. It will give you all the tools needed for cost analysis and increasing productivity and visibility. One such concept is Kanban Board and if you are in this field then this is not a new term for you. But if you wish to learn more about it, what it is, what are its features, benefits, and how to create one, then you landed on the right page. Today we will gather all the useful information about Kanban here and proceed with our careers. Also, if you are looking for some certifications in project management, then going for Jira training will be the best route for you. You will get that visibility in your resume and then work for the best organizations. But first, let us understand all about the Jira Kanban board.
Kanban is the framework that is based on Agile and DevOps software development tools. This tool is needed to have transparency in the project where the work and capacity are always visible. These Kanban boards in Jira are designed to provide the team that visibility that will help them to manage their workflow, limit their work-in-progress, and also maximize the team’s efficiency as well. As it is a method that is based on the continuous delivery of work in the team, the Jira Kanban board is very helpful in making sure that there is a continuous improvement in cycle time for the team and it should be accompanied by an increase in efficiency.
There are several benefits that the team will have with the use of Kanban boards in their team and some of them are mentioned below:
If we talk about Kanban as a practice, then visibility is one of the major components of it. The team should be able to recognize the features of the work and everyone in the team should be aware of ongoing tasks. The project is going to have a backlog of tasks and with the help of these boards, it would be easier for the team to see how tasks are moving in the whole process. The simplicity is provided in these boards that help in spotting the bottlenecks easily and working on them as soon as possible.
As a product manager, you would always want to deliver more and increase the quality of the product. But you cannot just throw some extra tasks on the team. But one of the benefits that come with the use of Kanban boards is that you will have an improved flow efficiency in the team that will help you in highlighting the areas of inefficiency very quickly. Once you are able to identify the problem you will be able to take action against it. For every obstacle that you are going to find on your way, you are going to have a smoother process and hence improved efficiency in the end.
Now that you are on the road to increased efficiency, you are automatically going to have better productivity in your project. Your focus will not only be on the starting of the work but till the end of the task which will help in having more productivity. There are two productivity metrics that are used in Kanban- Cycle time and throughput. The cycle time will tell the team how much it takes for the task to pass through the entire process. With throughput, the team will be aware of how many tasks are delivered in a given period of time. These metrics help in keeping the productivity of the whole team in check from the start to the end of the project.
If we talk about traditional management methods, then it focused more on planning things in advance and then forcing the team to complete all those tasks. But this shows significant failures. The team needed to work more than their limits allowed. But with Kanban boards and this methodology, WIP which stands for Work In Progress Limits, is used. When WIP is reached, there will be no addition of tasks until other tasks are completed. This will help the team to get overburdened and complete many tasks in the given time.
Improved collaboration and communication
Having transparency in the project is going to have better results for the team as they are the ones who need to work on those tasks. So, with the Kanban board Jira, the team is encouraged to come together for better collaboration and communication. This will help them to decide the direction of the business. The team gives their reviews and idea which could be used to improve the current process. The Kanban meeting will ensure that various stakeholders are coming together to work in a collaborative environment which will benefit the project in the end.
There are two types of Kanban boards that are generally used by the team. One is a physical Kanban board which will have all the elements mentioned below physically on the whiteboard. This is suitable for the team that is more co-located. The second is a digital Kanban board. This comes with many features. With Jira, you are going to find out of a box Kanban board template where you can add elements as per your need and create one board for your team. You can add various features like WIP, and stories and customize it as per the need.
Some elements of the Kanban board Jira are:
The visual cards are one of the important elements of the Kanban board as they will represent a task, an issue, or a bug in the team. This will ensure that team is aware of what is going on and what is needed in the task. It is usually recommended to have one card per task to avoid confusion. These cards can be user stories if the team is working using agile methodology. These are used for a visual representation of the tasks that are ongoing in the team.
The workflow of the task is represented as a column on the Kanban board. Each column will define the state of the task and will show what development stage is going on for that card. These titles can be simple and should be understandable by the whole team. You can use complex ones as per the need of the project. The cards will flow among these columns as per the workflow.
Work In Progress Limits
The WIP limits will show the number of cards that are present in the column at a given period of time. This is decided by the team, and this will help the team to avoid overburden as mentioned above. If the WIP limit is reached, then the team needs to work toward changing the column of the given cards on the board before the new card is added to the card. This will ensure that you are aware of what tasks are taking the time or having issues while completing them.
These are horizontal divisions of tasks on the boards. As the columns will define the state of the task in the given development cycle, these horizontal swimlanes will group the similar kinds of tasks ad issues together. This will help the team to visualize them more clearly. They will be able to separate them and view them based on those criteria that will help them to work on them more efficiently.
Backlog plays a major role in Kanban practice in the team. It is the place where the stakeholders, the product manager, and the team will put their ideas for the product. These ideas are later on discussed by the whole members once they are done with the tasks on the board.
This point is the time in the team when the item from the backlog column is being picked up and the team starts working on it.
This is regarded as the endpoint of the Kanban journey. It is when the product or the service is delivered to the customer. One thing to be noted here is that the time period between the commitment point and delivery should be sortie. This time is known as the lead time in Kanban Projects and the team is always working towards decreasing it as much as possible. This will show how much load the team can have and how much they can deliver in a single cycle.
Below are steps that you can follow to make your own Kanban board Jira for the team:
1. After you have logged into Jira, create one Kanban Project. Make sure to click on the Kanban software development project. And with this, your first Kanban board will appear.
2. When you are using the out-of-the-box template, you are going to find four columns- Backlog, Selected for Development, In-Progress, and Done. You can customize these columns and add more features if you like as per the team requirement.
3. You can create your swimlanes as per the need in the project.
4. Now you are aware of the need for WIP in the project. After adding the swimlanes and editing them accordingly, you can add WIP from the board settings. This will help you set the limit of tasks in one column.
5. When you are adding the cards to the board, always make sure to give priority. You can have a drag and drop option to move the priority up and down. The important items are always on the top of the Kanban board and if the developers are working on those, then they can ensure that they are giving value to the customer’s needs.
6. You can now track the progress at any given point in time. You can go to “Project Settings” > “Features” > “Reports”. This will generate reports and charts that will be very useful for you to know the ongoing trends in the team.
7. There are many automated tasks that you can create on your own Kanban board which will promote further efficiency in the team.
We can see that with the use of Kanban boards in the team, the teams get a 360-degree view of what is going on in the project and is also able to manage the tasks based on their priority. There are many elements in the Kanban board Jira that will add more productivity to the team. Jira Kanban board is the best way to manage the workflows in the software development cycle. So, in this article, we got an in-depth understanding of what is Jira Kanban board, its benefits. Then we understood what elements of this board are and how the team can have one as per their utility. With the Kanban practices and continuous improvement with this methodology, you will get to the desired point in no time.
And if you want to reach the desired point in your career with the best platform to learn all about Jira and Kanban, then there is no place better than StarAgile. Here not only, you are going to get a plethora of opportunities to learn but you are going to find the best instructors that will help you build an understanding. This will help you build the projects in big conglomerates. So, start your journey and get your Jira certification now.
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