Many engineering and manufacturing companies choose LeanKit to help them to gain visibility into and manage their work. We are increasingly impressed with both the diversity and utility these organizations are getting from their LeanKit boards. With this post, we’d like to share some of the more interesting examples, in the hope that it may inspire better processes and lead…
When you’re first implementing Kanban, it’s easy to grasp the early and obvious benefits of visualizing your work: Benefits like maximizing your time, tracking progress more effectively, and communicating better often happen quickly. At some point, however, your team will hit a plateau -- a place where improvements slow or stop completely.
While it’s normal to feel frustrated by plateaus, you can push past them and keep improving with real, measurable results. At LeanKit, the documentation team traveled a similar journey. By using Kanban principles as our guide, we’ve solved several of our plateau challenges and have seen a 5x reduction in cycle time and a 3x increase in throughput.
Visualizing what you do now is largely regarded as one of the initial steps in a Kanban or Lean journey. Even starting with simple To Do, Doing, and Done lanes on a LeanKit board works wonders. People know what work is “happening” and the current status. They understand the flow of work and sequence of actions to get things done.
This transparency — one major outcome of visualizing work — is only the starting point though.
What most teams are really aiming for is speed. So the question becomes: What steps does a team need to take to go from simple visualization to continuous, speedy value delivery?
When multiple teams, various tools, and stakeholders from across the business are involved, IT Service Management (ITSM) processes can be complicated and challenging to manage -- but Kanban can help. We’ve created new board templates, based on ITIL guidelines, to quickly get started on managing and implementing your ITSM processes. These new Kanban board templates will give your team the visibility it needs to take a systems-thinking approach to prioritizing and managing problems, changes, and incidents -- resulting in faster time to resolution and reduced costs.
Keep reading to learn how your team can use these Kanban board templates, with specific examples of some of your most common workflows: incident resolution, problem and incident management, change authorization, and change implementation.
Recently, a group of my LeanKit coworkers and I were talking Kanban. The age-old debate surrounding the definitions of lead time and cycle time came up, and we all rolled our eyes a bit. The Lean community has rehashed this topic a million times already, but it seems we still can’t seem to reach a consensus. The topic can be confusing to those new to Kanban, and unfailingly frustrates experienced practitioners. In this post, I’ll explain why these definitions are commonly debated. I'll also explain how a simple definition can help you make the most of these Lean metrics.
In my last post, I talked about the basic metrics of flow (cycle time, throughput, and WIP) and shared what data you’d need to collect to get started. Now that you have the data -- how do you turn it into meaningful flow metrics? You’ll just need to learn a few simple Kanban calculations. In this post, I’ll share how to calculate cycle time using start and finish times of work items.