With remote working being the new normal in the post-pandemic era, organizations worldwide are finding it hard to manage employee activities and business tasks in remote working models. Project managers are turning to Agile project management frameworks like Trello Kanban boards to make their teams more agile and productive. In this post, we will explain how to manage software development using Trello Kanban Boards.
What Is Trello?
Trello is a web-based, Kanban project management software developed by Atlassian for organizing, coordinating, and tracking projects, workflow or tasks. Ever since its inception in 2011, Trello grew to be one of the most popular project management tools, with over a million users including giants like Google, Udemy, and StackShare. This visually attractive, engaging, and intuitive application organizes your projects into boards, and enables real-time collaboration between teams and projects.
One of the most important features of Trello are the Kanban Boards, which are visual tools that tell you what is being worked on, who is working on what task, and where something stands in a process. Trello Kanban boards look similar to a board with sticky notes indicating important tasks. With Trello, you can collaborate anywhere, anytime.
What Is the Kanban Method?
Kanban is one of the most popular lean workflow management methodologies for managing Agile software projects effectively, at an individual, team, or even organizational level. It enables users to define, manage and improve work, relieve the team from overburden and deliver customer value fast and as expected. The method works around the Kanban board, where work items or tasks are represented visually, with every member being able to see the state of each item at any time.
Simply put, the Kanban process follows the “To Do”, “Doing”, and “Done” methodology.
There are two simple rules to apply Kanban rules into your workflow:
Visualize Your Process
The most popular way for data visualization is Kanban board, which is vertically divided into multiple columns, each column depicting a state in your process. The different states may include To Do, Development, Quality Assurance and Deployed state. Individual tasks can be represented as a card that bears the name of task, name of assigned worker, due date and other important information about the task, if any.
Limit Work in Progress
Limit number of assigned jobs to a reasonable value to avoid any chaos. Limit work in progress for developers such that it does not cause delays and affect their concentration and performance. A well-managed Kanban board should provide a clear picture of your project status at a glance.
Read our guide on what is Kanban for everything you want to know about the Kanban method.
Trello Kanban Benefits
A Kanban board contains visual cues that enable teammates to see the progress of a project, allowing project managers to optimize work delivery across several teams and manage even the most complex projects in one environment.
The top benefits of the Kanban software development process are:
- Better Visibility – by enabling all to instantly see the movement of work through the process. Visualization is the most important feature of the Kanban method.
- Improved Efficiency – by reducing bottlenecks, stalled tasks and excessive work in progress. This helps to make the process smoother and more efficient.
- Increased Productivity – improved efficiency naturally causes increased productivity. This can be achieved by transferring the focus from beginning work to finishing work.
- Preventing Overburdening the Team – Kanban pulls tasks into the workflow only when the team has the capacity to accomplish them. Limits on work in progress helps teams to ensure they don’t work on too many tasks simultaneously.
- Higher Predictability – by keeping the process more stable and consistent.
- Improved Collaboration – by encouraging frequent collaboration among team members to exchange relevant info, brainstorm ideas.
- Stronger Company Culture - strong collaboration between team members, managers, stakeholders cause improved morale and promotes trust, respect and leadership roles across all levels.
How to Visualize Projects in Trello
Follow the steps below to begin using the Trello Kanban board with ease.
- Step 1 – Create a Trello Account
- Step 2 – Create a new Kanban board in Trello. To do so, click the ‘+’ sign on the top right corner or click ‘Create New Board’ from the menu item. Choose a board title and you can change the backdrop if needed.
- Step 3 – you’ll begin with an empty board. Make a list to help you with your workflow. Select ‘Add List” box to create columns for Kanban cards.
- Step 4 – Add task cards to your to-do list from the three-dotted ‘option’ button on the top right corner of the list.
- Step 5 – Use checklist option to break down the task into smaller segments
- Step 6 – you can customize Trello Kanban cards, like making them more colorful by using color coded labels. Use color codes depending on groupings you want to follow. You can also set due dates, add attachments, and add custom fields to the cards.
- Step 7 – Invite your teammates to work together on Trello.
- Step 8 - Assign team members to a specific task once the members have joined the Trello Kanban board. Team members can comment on specific cards. Others will be notified if any change is made to that card.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the difference between Kanban and Trello?
Trello is a web based Kanban project management application. A Kanban board is a visual representation of various projects stagewise. Trello is the perfect platform for Kanban teams.
2. How do I use Kanban templates in Trello?
Trello is an ideal platform for Kanban boards. To use Kanban templates in Trello:
- Step 1 - Create a Trello Account
- Step 2 – Create a new Kanban board in Trello By clicking ‘Create New Board’ from the menu item. Choose a board title.
- Step 3 – Make a list to help with your workflow. Select ‘Add List” box to create columns for Kanban cards.
- Step 4 – Add task cards to your to-do list.
- Step 5 – use Checklist option to break down the task into smaller segments
- Step 6 – you can customize Trello Kanban cards, like making them more colorful by using color coded labels, setting due dates, adding attachments, and custom fields.
- Step 7 – Invite teammates to work together on Trello.
- Step 8 - Assign team members to specific tasks.
3. Is Trello good for Agile?
Trello is a web based application that smoothly accommodates Agile methodology. It functions like a traditional whiteboard in a digital form. It allows easy real-time collaboration between teams and projects.
4. Is Trello a Kanban or scrum?
Trello is a web-based Kanban project management application.
5. Is Trello or Jira better?
Trello offers Kanban boards, while Jira offers Kanban, Scrum and Sprint boards. In project management, Jira works better with agile methodologies than Trello.
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Project management is a complex task, not to say highly stressful. With the powerful Trello tool at disposal, businesses do not need heavyweight project management apps to keep track of work in progress. The simple, easy to use Trello Kanban board can help improve visibility of your workflow, increase your team’s productivity and make your system more predictable.
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