What Do You Want To Know, About Kanban In Software Development?

I asked this question via Twitter a few minutes ago, and wanted to ask the non-twittering inter-web-o-blog-reading public:

if I were to do an Intro To Kanban presentation for your team/company/local-user-group, what questions would you want answered?

Let me know what you would like to have answered, and I’ll see what the common threads are. The resulting presentation material will be made available via my GitHub account, and I’ll likely end up answering some of the questions via blog posts, too.

About Derick Bailey

Derick Bailey is an entrepreneur, problem solver (and creator? :P ), software developer, screecaster, writer, blogger, speaker and technology leader in central Texas (north of Austin). He runs SignalLeaf.com - the amazingly awesome podcast audio hosting service that everyone should be using, and WatchMeCode.net where he throws down the JavaScript gauntlets to get you up to speed. He has been a professional software developer since the late 90's, and has been writing code since the late 80's. Find me on twitter: @derickbailey, @mutedsolutions, @backbonejsclass Find me on the web: SignalLeaf, WatchMeCode, Kendo UI blog, MarionetteJS, My Github profile, On Google+.
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  • Rob

    How do you move away from an iteration based development cycle, with regression run, and eventual deployment. To a more Kanban like, release per feature?

    What are the pains? the middle grounds as you step closer to Kanban?

    Typical responses/experiences I’ve seen are:

    - We have a limited amount of automated test coverage. How can we release per feature with confidence?
    - We still find regression bugs per iteration. How can we have the confidence to release per feature if this is the case?
    - How do you keep the trunk in a constantly releaseable state?
    - How do you branch per feature but without losing the benefits of Continuous Integration

  • Greg

    How can you apply it to maintenance of applications as well as new development? The main issues I’ve seen with methodoligies like scrum is haw to work production defects in to the back log.

  • Where to start, what to read and in which order. Next, what metrics do we need to care about and how do to gather them.
    How do you get the people in the organisation motivated to once again change gears.

  • - How do you sell Kanban to managment? Those familiar PRINCE and SCRUM, XYZ etc.

    - How do you go from zero process to Kanban in 5 steps (context is small team wanting to see *some* benefit).

    - What does “DONE” mean?

  • Along the same lines mentioned earlier, I would be interested in a simple template and opinionated approach for a kanban trial.

    In other words, it’s all new to me and it’s overwhelming to read through all the material on the topic and try to make decisions. Having a simple step-by-step template to start a first project would be very helpful. After using it a couple times, it would be much easier to make sense of all the stuff I’ve previously read and make meaningful decisions. Make the assumptions for me and I’ll change those assumptions later.

  • Alper

    How do you provide feature/story/etc. estimates using Kanban system?

    How do you implement Kanban and limited WIP in an environment where ba/project manager is expected to provide a project timeline?


  • Nick

    What approaches can be used when dealing with bottlenecks that you cannot control such as 3rd party integration and SOX/legal compliance?

    BTW, great topic. I’m very anxious to see the results.

  • With most of the teams that I’ve worked with to introduce an agile approach I’ve always taken the approach of using Scrum as a start point and then as the team evolves, they drop / reduce the frequency of practices that they see as wasteful.

    I imagine that a team starting out with Kanban would do quite the opposite and only introduce practices as they can justify the value that it would bring to their customer.

    From my perspective, it would be great to see some material that centred around the essential elements and how to introduce them to a team from scratch and furthermore, how the and in particular one that isn’t already familiar with agile practices such as Scrum would understand what to introduce and in doing so what value their customer would derive.


  • I just gave a talk on this at tally code camp this weekend. most questions fell into a few categories:

    how to get to same sized work
    how to get to release per feature
    how to plan work and costs

    most of the theory resonates well with people, it’s the planning and rapid delivery that trips them up.