How we chose our Kanban Tool

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We’ve been using Pivotal Tracker [PT] as our Collaborative Project Management Tool for over 2 years now.

Recently though, we chose to move toward a Kanban style of workflow. PT is however heavily geared toward an iterative form of development – but we’ve now chosen to eschew iterations altogether. We’ve been doing continuous deployment for a while now, and we found the whole process of estimations and sizing of stories a largely wasteful exercise.

I am not going to talk about “Why Kanban”, because there are many articles and books which talks about the same. But I am instead going to walk you through the process that we used to evaluate and decide upon the online Kanban tool that we finally ended up shifting to.

The different tools we evaluated were:

If you’ve ever used PT, you already know what an awesome piece of software it is. The real-time collaboration features, the sheer fluidity of the user interface, the way it all tightly fits together – is amazing. So, our expectations from the Kanban tool were already fairly high – especially in terms of a clutter free, fluid, “don’t-get-in-my-way” user experience.

So, we came up with a list of criteria for deciding our tool of choice.

Here is the original google spreadsheet .

So which tool did we end up choosing? Well, its a Kanban Tool called KanbanTool :)

Lastly, I would like to mention those articles which helped us to understand Kanban better.

Update: We also looked at Trello but it does not provide features such as WIP limit, cycle and lead time reporting etc. which are key for Kanban. But we found that there is a Google Chrome Extension which can be used for adding WIP(Work in Progress) limit in Trello. Obviously that would not be sufficient for collaboration, but would be sufficient for personal Kanban.

Posted in : Process

  • Crista Longerbam

    Great article! Thank your for sharing.

  • Kane

    Did you end up looking at the Agile feature of JIRA which allows you to have a combined Kanban board + a SCRUM view?

    • vaidy

      Is that a recent feature?

      Somehow we don’t remember seeing that feature in Jira when we did the evaluation a year ago.