The Kanban method is growing in popularity for all the right reasons. Thanks to a digital Kanban board, the approach is a lot easier to use. You also have more tools to work with, including flexible cards, dependent tasks, and prioritization. Kanban is also an approach that you can use to spot bottlenecks and potential issues.
The method is incredibly flexible too, allowing it to be used by different teams and for organizing different processes. In fact, the Kanban approach can be used in a wide range of situations. In this article, we are going to take a closer look at five Kanban board designs and how they work in a different environment. Let’s get started, shall we?
Kanban for Regular Tasks
The basic digital Kanban board setup has three stages: to-do, doing, and done. As the names suggest, the three stages represent the status of tasks on the board. The tasks themselves are represented by Kanban cards, each with details about the task added for easier reading. You can set the start and end dates for the task as well as other parameters fluidly.
Kanbanize, one of the best digital Kanban board software solutions on the market, gives you more tools to work with, even when you are using the most basic Kanban board design. With the three stages in place, you can move tasks from one stage to the next at any time. You can add colors and tags to the tasks too; these features let you separate tasks based on categories and other metrics.
Even better, you can prioritize tasks and assign them to team members. Add notifications to the mix and you have the perfect platform for managing projects indeed. When a task gets updated, for instance, all team members assigned to that task will receive a notification. They also have the option to add attachments and other details to the cards.
Kanban for Small Teams
When your team consists of five to 10 members (or fewer), there is another way you can use the Kanban approach to manage tasks. Rather than having stages displayed on the board, you can add a stage for each team member. The tasks get assigned to the correct member every time, while the status of each task can be represented by colored tags or other markers.
With this design, you don’t move the Kanban cards from one stage to the next. Instead, the cards stay in place until they are completed, and then archived if necessary. The approach also eliminates the need for multiple phases, although you can still show progress using items in the task or by changing the color of the card.
This design works really well for managing tasks and their PICs. Other team members can still be assigned to individual tasks, but the card will always be located under the PIC’s stage. The method lets you organize smaller teams based on workloads, resulting in higher overall efficiency and allowing for better task sharing under heavy loads.
Kanban for Product Development
It is also worth noting just how popular the Kanban method is in product development. Today’s best product development teams use agile workflow and CI/CD for rapid deployment and more iterations, and the approach is in line with the way Kanban is designed. You still get the Doing and Done stages, but inside them, the board is fully customized for product development.
The process starts with Features stage, where all of the features that need to be added to the iteration are listed as cards. The next stage is Ready to Start; product owners can assign features that are ready to be implemented to this stage. At this point, all stakeholders have a clear (and visual) view of what to expect in the next version of the product.
Next, we have the Doing stage, which is often divided further into three stages: development, testing, and release. As the features get developed and tested, cards are moved along these stages. Cards can also move freely as needed; for example, a broken feature that doesn’t fit in the current iteration can be sent back to Features stage if necessary.
Kanban for Digital Marketing
Kanban is often used to manage marketing-related tasks, but the implementation of Kanban in digital marketing is really interesting on its own. Once again, the customizable nature of a digital Kanban board is one of the primary reasons why the design works so well. Marketing tasks can be divided into three main stages: requested, in progress, and done. Those stages can then be divided further.
The Requested stage can be divided into Regular and Priority to add a sense of urgency to some tasks. The In Progress stage, on the other hand, adds a Working and Review phases for better control over tasks and their progress.
Let’s not forget that Kanbanize also allows the board to be divided vertically, which means you can have sections for content, design, and other elements of the marketing task (or the entire campaign) in different areas of the board. The visual nature of digital Kanban boards makes this setup very versatile, particularly when used for managing digital marketing tasks and campaigns.
Kanban for Quality Assurance
Lastly, we have the design for quality assurance or QA, which includes testing stages and detailed reporting. All new testing tasks are added to the Backlog stage and moved to Planned when they are scheduled for immediate testing. The next stages are In Progress and Done, with the board divided vertically based on how urgent the tasks are.
With this setup, combined with the ability to move cards from one board to another, the QA team can stay on top of features that need to be tested. The entire QA workflow can be optimized for faster deployment without sacrificing quality or user experience in the process. It is even easy to spot testing bottlenecks and to divide tasks into smaller testing projects.
So, which of these designs work best for you? Whether you are running a development team or a group of digital marketers, the right Kanban board design can transform your workflow and improve efficiency by a huge margin.