A Kanban card template helps ensure that every card on your Kanban board has the information your team needs. Learn how using a Kanban card template can help your team create consistent Kanban cards for your Scrum or Agile processes.Create your template
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Kanban is a common project management methodology that allows teams to balance the work they need to complete with the availability of each team member. The idea is that team members “pull” tasks out of a backlog and move them through designated workflow stages. Typically, teams implement the Kanban method via Kanban boards.
If the Kanban board is a skeleton, Kanban cards are the muscle. Kanban cards house all of the information that developers need to know to complete a task. If your team is looking to create a more consistent Kanban process, creating a Kanban card template can help speed up your workflows. Here’s how it works.
In the Kanban method, each project task is represented by a card that houses relevant information to that task. This can include an overview of the task, key dates, important stakeholders, and the task status. A Kanban card template is a repeatable framework that you can copy to easily create new, templatized tasks.
Kanban card templates aren’t just about consistency—they also ensure that your team gets the information they need to kickstart their workflow. When all the necessary information is in the same place, team members can focus on completing the task, instead of tracking down missing details.
With a Kanban card template, it’s easy for team members to find the information they need to complete a task. Consistent formatting ensures that every incoming task request has the same information organized in the same way.
When you’re creating your Kanban card template, work with your Scrum team or Agile team members to brainstorm all of the information they may need to accurately complete a task in a Kanban board. This can help prevent bottlenecks or delays in production time by minimizing the need to chase down information.
It’s important that your Kanban card template has the right information in it. Here are a few things that are most commonly found on a Kanban card.
An actionable task name: Starting task names with a verb establishes a clear understanding of what task needs to be done. For example, “Add functionality to web app” makes it clear what kind of work needs to be completed for this task at a high-level.
Key dates: Depending on your team’s workflow, certain dates are important to both project managers and developers. For example, a project manager may need to know the start date of a task, but a developer might need to know when the task needs to be completed.
Task owner: This is the individual responsible for completing the task. If anybody has questions about this specific task, this is the person they can contact for clarification.
Task status: In the Kanban system, this is often represented by where the card is on a Kanban board. Every team has a unique workflow for how they track work in progress, so it’s important that everyone knows the different stages of your team’s Kanban board.
Some information on a Kanban card is also important for project managers to know. Here’s some optional information that can provide important context for project managers:
Task priority: This is how important an individual task is in comparison to the other tasks around it. Prioritizing tasks can help optimize lead time for the tasks that need it. This can help your development team decide what tasks to complete first.
Story points: Story points are a way to measure tasks by the amount of time or effort it takes to complete them. This information is important for task management so a project manager can prevent their team from getting overloaded with too much work.
Overarching project or initiative: Some teams have tasks from a variety of different projects in one Kanban board. Labeling what initiative a card belongs to helps provide context for the developer and keeps information organized for other stakeholders.
Subtasks: Some tasks may require enough work that it can be split into smaller subtasks. Attaching these tasks to a parent task helps keep work organized.
Time tracking: If you work for an agency, time tracking is important for client billing purposes and establishing pricing.
Once your team identifies all of the information they’ll need to accurately complete a task on a Kanban board, you can start creating your Kanban card template. The easiest way to do this is by using a digital project management tool that allows you to create tasks from a template and access information in real time.
When you create a Kanban card template in a digital project management system, you can quickly and easily create a new Kanban card by duplicating the template, and filling it out with the relevant information associated with that task.
Forms. When someone fills out a Form, it shows up as a new task within an Asana project. By intaking information via a Form, you can standardize the way work gets kicked off, gather the information you need, and ensure no work falls through the cracks. Instead of treating each request as an ad hoc process, create a standardized system and set of questions that everyone has to answer. Or, use branching logic to tailor questions based on a user’s previous answer. Ultimately, Forms help you reduce the time and effort it takes to manage incoming requests so your team can spend more time on the work that matters.
Automation. Automate manual work so your team spends less time on the busy work and more time on the tasks you hired them for. Rules in Asana function on a basis of triggers and actions—essentially “when X happens, do Y.” Use Rules to automatically assign work, adjust due dates, set custom fields, notify stakeholders, and more. From ad hoc automations to entire workflows, Rules gives your team time back for skilled and strategic work.
Custom fields. Custom fields are the best way to tag, sort, and filter work. Create unique custom fields for any information you need to track—from priority and status to email or phone number. Use custom fields to sort and schedule your to-dos so you know what to work on first. Plus, share custom fields across tasks and projects to ensure consistency across your organization.
Subtasks. Sometimes a to-do is too big to capture in one task. If a task has more than one contributor, a broad due date, or stakeholders that need to review and approve before it can go live, subtasks can help. Subtasks are a powerful way to distribute work and split tasks into individual components—while keeping the small to-dos connected to the overarching context of the parent task. Break tasks into smaller components or capture the individual components of a multi-step process with subtasks.
Slack. Turn ideas, work requests, and action items from Slack into trackable tasks and comments in Asana. Go from quick questions and action items to tasks with assignees and due dates. Easily capture work so requests and to-dos don’t get lost in Slack.
Google Workplace. Attach files directly to tasks in Asana with the Google Workplace file chooser, which is built into the Asana task pane. Easily attach any My Drive file with just a few clicks.
GitHub. Automatically sync GitHub pull request status updates to Asana tasks. Track progress on pull requests and improve cross-functional collaboration between technical and non-technical teams, all from within Asana.
Jira. Create interactive, connected workflows between technical and business teams to increase visibility around the product development process in real time—all without leaving Asana. Streamline project collaboration and hand offs. Quickly create Jira issues from within Asana so that work passes seamlessly between business and technical teams at the right time.
Before you start creating your Kanban card template, discuss with your team the type of information they need to complete a development task. Also consider the information that you would need as a project manager to look at from a glance. From there, input that information into a digital project management software that allows you to create templates.
Typically, your Kanban card template should include an actionable task name, key dates, task owner, and the task status (which is commonly represented by the column the card is in). Some other information you can add to your Kanban card template includes task priority, story points, overarching project title, subtasks, and time tracking.
A Kanban card system, also known as a Kanban board, is a project management methodology designed for a process of continuous improvement where tasks are “pulled” from a backlog and into a standard workflow. Each of these tasks are represented by a card, and columns designate what stage in the workflow a task is in.
No! Ditch the printer—using digital Kanban card templates allows you to keep your team members organized. With a digital Kanban tool, your team can update a card in real time, and everyone sees the changes. This prevents people from using out of date Kanban cards with the wrong information.
Learn how to create a customizable template in Asana. Get started today.