Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Lean concepts for the operations management - part 3 – Looking at KANBAN


Ok.. now you know what we need... we definitely need something more flexible..and something which works!.
Looking at KANBAN, we found that it aligns with our thinking in most the areas we are concerned about..

KANBAN allows us to
;

- Be more flexible

- We didn’t fix any sprint, plan days, time boxing or release days.. we wanted to plan everyday, discard plans we made yesterday, make new plans today, deliver all the time, allow most prioritized stories to flow in at any time. Unlike in SCRUM we cannot think of completing all stories what we have committed to do ( remaining story points = 0) in order to start a new set of commitments.


(Diagrams taken from www.versionone.com website)

·Be More lean

- We wanted to be lean.. and more lean.. That’s why we initiated this ..

· Monitor cycle time

- Yes we don’t want to estimate each of our management user story, Simply that doesn't make sense (I explained it in one of my previous posts)..Still we want to see when that’s raised, when its taken in to action, when it was in execution and when it was done, the total time period we spent to get it going.

· Limit the WIP

- I think I explained this before.. Every one of us had too much in our plates.. So some items were not moving out or at least not at the speed they should have been. Now that if we find a way to limit things based on our capacity, at-least we know we are not adding so much in to our workload unless we push some stuff we have already had.

· Have more visibility

- This is really interesting.. As a manager or a senior manager, how do you feel about this much of visibility of your responsibilities and visibility of your deliveries among your peers?
Amazingly that worked well with us.. as far as we all understood the benefit of this visibility of things we got to do across different departments/Sections. But I agree when it comes to areas such as HR, there are user stories which shouldn’t paste on the wall. In this case we have to be selective with what level of visibility is needed with certain stories. I usually don't like tools.. I prefer simple stickies on the walls. But in this case I understand a need of a good tool.

· Purge the backlog

- If there are many less priority stories not delivered over time, their value of delivering them will be reduced or those stories may not be valid anymore. So KANBAN will allow us to purge the backlog in every 3 months or so to clear out those items.


Next:

Lean concepts for the operations management - part 4 – How did we implement it ?


Previous:

Lean concepts for the operations management - part 1 – How did it start?

Lean concepts for the operations management - part 2 – Why not scrum..?

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