What You Need to Know About Taskboards vs. Connections

Have you ever wondered when to use a taskboard or connections in LeanKit? Taskboards and connections are both designed to assist with visualizing the breakdown of work, yet they have distinctly different uses. In an interview with a panel of our product experts, we learned that each option offers its own unique advantages.

What’s the main distinction between taskboards and connections?

Taskboards are best used when you need to break down your individual tasks. Connections are best suited for breaking down larger efforts that involve multiple team members.

When would you use a taskboard in LeanKit?

Taskboards are for breaking your own work into smaller pieces (e.g., subtasks) and tracking your progress as you go. They help you remember the minutiae related to your work — like a visual checklist.

A taskboard with six detailed subtasks

A taskboard with six detailed subtasks

Are taskboards good to use when you want to give stakeholders visibility into a project?

A stakeholder can look at any LeanKit board to see overall status and what the progress is for any taskboard. However, since taskboards are designed to help an individual that owns the card track their details, they are not the right place for a stakeholder to look for overall project summary information (e.g., risks to project completion).

Do taskboards feed into statistics?

On the face of any card that contains a taskboard, there’s a progress indicator. It shows how many tasks have been completed in relation to the total number of tasks and also calculates percentage complete based on taskcard sizes. (Cards without an assigned size automatically default to a size of one.) When a card contains a taskboard, the card (not the task detail) is represented in the board analytics.

Taskboard progress indicators provide quick insight into percent of work complete for the card.

Taskboard progress indicators provide quick insight into percent of work complete for the card.

Should your organization need taskboard-level details for custom reporting purposes, that capability is available in our Advanced Edition.

Do you need to have administrative rights to create a taskboard?

The LeanKit roles of User, Manager, and Admin include access rights for creating taskboards. Taskboards are built into every card and are available in our Select, Advanced and Enterprise Editions. Taskboards have three predetermined lanes: To Do, Doing, and Done. Board administrators can also set up unique task types for use within taskboards to provide an additional level of granularity and for performing taskboard filtering.

When would you use a connection in LeanKit?

Connections are for tracking and managing the execution of company initiatives or projects. They provide both high-level and detailed visibility into the work by simply “drilling through” to the next level — no matter how many levels you need. View the overall progress of multiple projects on a board (e.g., a portfolio board with multiple “project” cards), click on a project to view the project details (e.g., deliverable, issue, and risk progress), and drill into a deliverable card to view the detailed feature or story progress (e.g., sprint, phase or a specific team’s work).

Multi-level board structure including Portfolio, Project and Team levels

Multi-level board structure including Portfolio, Project and Team levels


Are connections good to use when you want to give your leadership and stakeholders visibility into a project?

YES, they’re great for that purpose. Connections give the stakeholders quick and easy visibility into the overall progress of a project. As a result, they’re able to see roadblocks and any parts of the project that may require attention.

How do connections work?

With connections, you can manage enterprise-level portfolios of projects with a hierarchy of interconnected LeanKit boards. You can quickly break down higher-level items, or “parent” cards, by delegating “children” cards to an existing board or by breaking out the work onto a new board.

Additional Resources

For a more in-depth look at taskboards, click here. To learn about the latest taskboard feature enhancements, click here. For an in-depth look at how to use our connections functionality, click here.