My previous two blogs have dealt with the agile methods XP and SCRUM. Today I hope to inform you of another method called Kanban. These methods do share similar traits such as the emphasis on teamwork and fast releases of products. However, there are differences and this blog aims to highlight Kanban’s uniqueness.
The word Kanban originates from Japan and translates as “single card”. Stock is recorded and once running low these Kanban cards reorder the required amount. Through this method waste is eliminated. Mass production will contain numerous defects and an over supply of products which can be very wasteful. Kanban produces only when it is required.
Kanban can also be defined as “a just-in-time method of inventory control”. It works on continuous delivery but not in the same way as SCRUM. There are no sprints in Kanban. Changes can be made at any time whereas sprints cannot be adjusted mid-sprint. Kanban is more suitable to environments where there is a large variety of products e.g. supermarkets.
Kanban may be less popular method than SCRUM or XP but it has copious advantages and is an extremely important and useful agile method of software development.