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Using the Kanban Board

The highlighted information on this page refers to functionality not yet generally available. It is available only in the Preview Sandbox environment.

The Kanban agile methodology in Workfront enables you to more easily move stories across an agile story board while limiting the amount of work in progress. There are no start and end dates when using the Kanban agile methodology.

(You cannot view the Kanban board when viewing a project in an agile view. Instead, only the Scrum agile story board is available. For more information about viewing a project in an agile view, see "Managing a Project in an Agile View.")

Understanding the Kanban Board

The following sections enable you to better understand how the Kanban board functions:

Understanding the Kanban Board Layout and Functions

[update screen shot- Shouldn't include swim lane or Stories Column or Burndown chart. Should include Backlog column.]

The Kanban board consists of the following elements:

Backlog Column: Displays all tasks that are currently on the backlog. This column is not displayed by default. For more information about the backlog, including how to display it on the Kanban board, see "Managing the Agile Backlog."

Stories Column: Unlike the other columns on the story board, the Stories column is not a task status, but rather exists to house any stories that contain subtasks in the iteration or project. Only parent stories that have at least one subtask on the story board can reside in this column. The parent stories themselves do not move from status to status across the story board.

In an iteration, this column appears on the story board only when one or more stories on the story board contains at least one subtask that meets the following requirements:

Assigned to the same agile team as the parent task

Belongs to the iteration

In a project, this column appears any time a task has at least one subtask.

Story Statuses: Indicates how a story is progressing based on which status column the story is in.

For more information, see "Updating the Status of Stories."

Story statuses can be customized for the project by modifying the agile view, as described in "Creating and Customizing an Agile View" in "Creating and Customizing Views."

Swim Lane: When a parent story and its subtasks appear on the story board, a swim lane is created specifically for the story and its subtasks. This provides a visual distinction to better view how a story's subtasks are progressing across the story board. 

In an iteration, swim lanes appear on the story board only when a story on the story board contains at least one subtask that meets the following requirements:

Assigned to the same agile team as the parent task

Belongs to the iteration

In a project, swim lanes appear any time a task has at least one subtask or one parent task.

Individual Stories: Individual stories are displayed below any swim lanes on the story board. This provides a visual distinction from the stories that are part of a swim lane.

Understanding the Relationship between Subtasks and Stories

If a story contains subtasks, you cannot update any information on the parent story itself (such as points/hours or percent complete). Furthermore, you cannot move the story across the Kanban board to update its status. Rather, any changes you make to the story's subtasks are reflected on the story. The combined story points or hours for all subtasks determines the points or hours of the parent story. 
For example, if a story has only one subtask valued at 4 points, the story itself also has 4 points. If you change the subtask point value to 3, the point value of the parent story is changed to 3. If you create another subtask on the same story and set the point value for that subtask to 4, the point value for the story is changed to 7 in order to reflect the combined point value for both subtasks.

This same logic applies to second-level subtasks (subtasks of subtasks). If a subtask has one or more second-level subtasks, the subtask is calculated based on the second-level subtasks.

Understanding the Relationship between the Story Board and the Backlog [Does any of this section apply to Kanban?]

NOTE The information in this section applies only to agile views on an iteration; agile views on a project do not use a backlog. (For more information about the differences between agile views on an iteration and a project, see "Differences When Using the Agile View on a Project verses on an Iteration" in "Managing a Project in an Agile View.")

The iteration backlog shows only stories or subtasks where you can set an estimate. If a parent story has subtasks that are displayed on the story board (because they are assigned to the same agile team and belong to the iteration), the parent task is not displayed on the backlog. In this situation, only the subtasks are displayed on the backlog, while the subtasks and the parent story are displayed on the story board.

For example, suppose that Story A contains Subtask 1 and Subtask 2 (and both subtasks are assigned to the same agile team). In this situation, Story A is displayed on the story board in a swim lane with Subtask 1 and Subtask 2. However, only Subtask 1 and Subtask 2 are displayed in the backlog. 

This same logic applies to second-level subtasks (subtasks of subtasks). If a subtask has one or more second-level subtasks assigned to the same agile team and belong to the iteration, only the second-level subtask is displayed in the backlog.

For more information about the backlog, see "Managing the Agile Backlog."

Displaying the Backlog on the Kanban Board

You can display a Backlog column to your Kanban board. The Backlog column contains the first 20 items from your backlog on the Kanban board.

By default, the Backlog column is hidden.

To display the backlog:

  1. Navigate to the Kanban board where you want to display the backlog.
  2. Click Show Backlog.

For more information about the backlog, see "Managing the Agile Backlog."

Viewing and Managing the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit on the Kanban Board

You can configure a Work In Progress (WIP) limit for each column on the Kanban board, as described in "Configuring the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit (Kanban Teams Only)" in the article "Configuring Agile Teams." 

The WIP limit is simply a visual warning, and does not restrict your team from having more items in each status column than the limit you set. 

Viewing the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit on the Kanban Board

When a WIP limit is configured for your agile team, it is displayed in the upper-right corner of each column on the Kanban board (except for the Complete column).

Any time the limit is exceeded for any column on the Kanban board, the limit is highlighted in red and a message is displayed. 

agile_kanban_wip.png

Updating the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit from the Kanban Board

Team members with Edit rights [to what?]can update the WIP limit for each status column directly from the Kanban board. (Alternatively, you can update the WIP limit as described in "Configuring the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit (Kanban Teams Only)" in the article "Configuring Agile Teams.")

  1. On the Kanban board, locate the WIP limit in the upper-right corner of each column on the Kanban board.
  2. Click the WIP limit you want to modify, then specify a new limit.
  3. Press Enter.

Updating the Status of Stories

You can change the status of a story directly from the Kanban board in order to reflect how the stories are progressing through the iteration or project:

  1. Navigate to the Kanban board where you want to update the status of a story.
  2. Drag a story from one status column on the Kanban board and into another column.
    A Story remains in the Complete column for 2 weeks after it is added.
    agile_storyboard_progress.png

Using Flags on Stories

On the Kanban story board, flags provide a visual indication of when a story is ready to move to the next status. This enables Kanban teams to use a "pull" approach rather than a "push" approach when moving stories across statuses.

Consider the following example of a team using a "pull" approach: Olivia, the graphic designer on the team, finishes her work and then sets the story flag as "Ready to Pull." This flag provides a visual indication to Tony, the copywriter on the team, that the story is ready for him to move to the next status. Tony then moves the story to the next status when he is ready to begin working on it. 

Consider the following when using flags on stories:

  • Flags are not a status, but rather a visual indication that the story is ready to be moved to the next status by another member of the team. 
  • Flags do not appear on any story cards that are in the Backlog column or in the Complete column (or in any column where the status of the column equates with Complete).
    For more information about story statuses, see "Updating the Status of Stories."

To change a flag on a story:

  1. Navigate to the Kanban board where you want to change a flag on a story.
  2. Expand the story tile to view the flag.
    The flag is set to On Track for each story by default.
    kanban_card.png
  3. Click the current flag, then select from the following flag options:
    • On Track: The story is in the appropriate status and no action needs to be taken at this time.
      This is the default flag for each story on the Kanban board.
      kanban_flag_ontrack.png
    • Is Blocked: The story cannot proceed to the next status. When this flag is set on a story, the story does not count toward the WIP limit. (For more information about WIP limits, see "Configuring the Work In Progress (WIP) Limit (Kanban Teams Only)" in the article "Configuring Agile Teams.")
      kanban_flag_blocked.png
    • Ready to Pull: The story is ready to be moved to the next status by another member of the team.
      kanban_flag_ready.png

Viewing and Editing Information about a Story

Understanding What Information Can Be Viewed and Edited

When viewing a story tile on the Kanban board, the information in the following table is available. You can edit most information inline, directly from the story tile.

Information Visible Editable Inline
The story name with a link directly to the task or issue  

The project name with a link directly to the project
This link is displayed only on stories (parent tasks, not subtasks) when using the agile view on an iteration; it is not displayed when using an agile view on a project.

✓   

The number of points or hours complete on the story and the number of points or hours assigned to the story
These numbers are used to calculate and display the Percent Complete for each story.

The Percent Complete for each story.
The Percent Complete for the iteration is calculated based on the Percent Complete for each story.
When updating Percent Complete for a story, you can choose any number between 0 and 100 if the story is based on a task. If the story is based on an issue, you can choose only 0 or 100 (stories that are based on tasks cannot be marked as partially complete within Workfront).

Who the story is assigned to

The color or category of the tile [Kanban]

Any additional fields (including custom fields) that might have been added to the agile view by modifying the agile view, as described in "Creating and Customizing an Agile View" in "Creating and Customizing Views."

Viewing and Editing Information on a Story Tile

  1. Navigate to the Kanban board.
  2. Expand the story tile to view all fields associated with the story.
    [add screenshot]
  3. (Optional) To edit a field, click the field, then make any changes. 
    You must have Edit rights to the task or issue in order to edit the story tile.
    For more information about each field and whether it can be edited, see "Understanding What Information Can Be Viewed and Edited."

Categorizing Stories by Color [Kanban?]

"Changing the Default Color Association of Stories"

"Changing the Color of Stories When Using Free Form"

Changing the Default Color Association of Stories

The default color association of stories differs depending on whether the story board is located on an iteration or on a project.

Iteration

On an iteration, story board tiles are color-coded according to the project the story is associated with. (Each project is arbitrarily assigned a color on the story board.) You can change this default behavior for each agile team. Colors for agile stories on an iteration can be tied to the project (default), story priority, owner, or free form. For more information, see "Configuring How Color Indicators Are Used for Stories on the Story Board" in "Creating and Managing Agile Teams."

Project

On a project, any subtasks match the color of the parent task, so that the colors of all stories in any given swimlane are the same. Colors are randomly assigned to tasks when they are created if the task does not have any subtasks or does not have a parent task. You can change this default behavior by modifying the agile view. Colors for agile stories on a project can be tied to the parent story (default), story priority, owner, or free form. For more information, see "Customizing an Agile View" in "Creating and Customizing Views."

Changing the Color of Stories When Using Free Form

If the agile team settings have been configured so the Associate Card Color to option is set to Free Form, users can manually change the color of individual story tiles (this can be useful to communicate other types of information that is important to the team or the organization):

Hover over the colored banner at the top of the story tile.

Click Change color, then select the desired color.

Adding a Subtask to an Existing Story [Kanban? (Updated procedure)]

When creating subtasks for existing stories, keep in mind the following: 

When the Completion Mode setting for the project is set to Manual:

  • Moving a parent story with subtasks to Complete updates the parent story to 100% and the Status to Complete. Subtasks are not updated.[Doesn't seem true for Kanban. Can't move a story to Complete if there is an incomplete subtask]
  • To update the Percent Complete for the story, you must update it from the Stories tab or from the Details page of the object.

When the Completion Mode setting for the project is set to Automatic

  • Moving a parent story with subtasks to Complete updates the parent story to 100% and the Status to Complete. Subtasks are also updated to 100% and the Status is updated to Complete.
  • To update the Percent Complete for the story, you must update the Percent Complete for any subtasks. The Percent Complete for the story is calculated based on the Percent Complete of all subtasks.

To add a subtask to an existing story: 

  1. Click the name of the task on the story tile on the Kanban board.
  2. Add a subtask to the task as you would in any other task list within Workfront, as described in "Creating Subtasks."

Assigning Users to Stories

  1. Navigate to the agile Kanban board where you want to assign users.
  2. Navigate to the story tile on the Kanban board where you want to add a user.
  3. Click the Plus icon on the story tile, begin typing the name of the user who you want to assign to the story, then click the name when it appears. (You can also click the drop-down arrow and select a user from the list. Users who are members of the agile team are displayed.)
    This option is available only when the story tile is expanded.
    agile_storycard_kanban.png
    Or
    Drag the user avatar from the list at the top of the page to the story tile where you want to assign the user.
    The user avatar list remains at the top of the page even while you scroll down the Kanban board.
    agile_story_adduser_drag.png

Configuring the Status Columns for Stories

You can configure which columns are displayed on the agile Kanban board.

For information about how to configure status columns for an agile team, see "Configuring Status Columns on the Agile Story Board" in "Configuring Agile Teams." 

Expanding and Collapsing Stories

The first time you view the Kanban board, individual stories are collapsed, allowing you to view the maximum number of stories on a single screen (swimlanes are expanded).

You can expand or collapse stories on the Kanban board, depending on whether you want to view more details about the story or view more stories on the screen.

You can expand or collapse stories individually, or you can simultaneously expand or collapse all stories in a single column.

When you collapse or expand a story, any changes you make are retained the next time you view the Kanban board. (Other users do not see your changes. Clearing your browser cache resets all stories to display as collapsed.)

To expand or collapse stories on the Kanban board:

  1. Navigate to the agile Kanban board that contains the stories that you want to expand or collapse.
  2. Navigate to the individual story tile that you want to expand or collapse, or navigate to the column where you want to expand or collapse all stories.
  3. Click the arrow next to the story name.
    Or
    To simultaneously expand or collapse all stories in the column, hold the Shift key while clicking the arrow next to the story name.
    agile_story_collapse.png

Changing the Order of Stories

You might want to change the order in which stories are displayed within status columns on the Kanban board.

NOTE You cannot change the order in which stories are displayed on the backlog for a Kanban team.

The order in which stories appear on the Kanban board does not indicate priority. However, it can affect the perceived priority by making stories more visible.

By default, stories are displayed in alphabetical order within each status column on the Kanban board. (Stories with swimlanes are displayed at the top of the story board, and stories without swimlanes are displayed separately below any swimlanes.)

When you reorder columns on the Kanban board, any changes you make are saved, so changes are retained the next time you or another user views the Kanban board. (Changes you make are not reverted when clearing the browser cache.)

To change the order or stories:

  1. Navigate to the Kanban board that contains the stories that you want to reorder.
  2. Drag a story tile or a swimlane to the desired vertical location within a status column on the Kanban board.
This article last updated on 2018-06-21 22:03:09 UTC