What is Kanban?

Kanban is a methodology originally developed by Toyota to be more efficient.

There are only two constraints imposed by Kanban:

  • Visualize your workflow
  • Limit your work in progress

Visualize your workflow

  • Your work is displayed on a board so that you have a clear overview of your project
  • Each column represents a step in your workflow

Limit your work in progress

  • Encourages focus by avoiding multitasking
  • Each phase can have work-in-progress limits
  • Limits help identify bottlenecks
  • Limits avoid working on too many tasks at the same time

Performance Measurement

Kanban uses lead and cycle times to measure performance:

  • Lead time: Time between task creation and completion
  • Cycle time: Time between task start and completion

For example, you may have a lead time of 100 days but only have to work 1 hour to complete the task.