Insights into the Perceived Benefits of Kanban in Software Companies: Practitioners’ Views

In the last decade, Kanban has been promoted as a means for bringing visibility to work while improving the software development flow, team communication and collaboration. However, little empirical evidence exists regarding Kanban use in the software industry. This paper aims to investigate the factors that users perceive to be important for Kanban use. We conducted a survey in 2015 among Kanban practitioners in the LeanKanban LinkedIn community. The survey results consist of 146 responses from 27 different organisations, with all respondents being experienced in using Kanban. The results show that practitioners perceived Kanban as easy to learn and useful in individual and team work. They also consider organisational support and social influence to be important determinants for Kanban use. Respondents noted various perceived benefits for using Kanban, such as bringing visibility to work, helping to reduce work in progress, improving development flow, increasing team communication and facilitating coordination. Despite the benefits, participants also identified challenges to using Kanban, such as organisational support and culture, difficulties in Kanban implementation, lack of training and misunderstanding of key concepts. The paper summarises the results and includes a discussion of implications for effective deployment of Kanban before describing future research needs.

Muhammad Ovais Ahmad, Jouni Markkula, Markku Oivo (University of Oulu):  Insights into the Perceived Benefits of Kanban in Software Companies: Practitioners’ Views

Presented at the 17th International Conference, XP 2016, Edinburgh, UK, May 24-27, 2016