An Approach to Optimizing Kanban Board Workflow and Shortening the Project Management Plan

Nadja Damij*, Talib Damij

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Kanban is a well-known agile method first implemented in Toyota's manufacturing process in the 1950s, later spreading across various industries and academic fields. It focuses on process and project improvement in different fields and emphasizes a team's ability to improve the efficiency of day-to-day activities by implementing the core practices (e.g., visualizing workflow, limiting work-in-progress, managing flow). The efficiency of day-to-day activities is crucial in every process, yet, recent times have called for a new out-of-the-box approach to address the challenges companies face. While the literature review presents efficiency improvements through the use of the core practices, one of the biggest problems while implementing Kanban is shown to be the setting of effective work-in-progress limits. This article addresses this issue and proves that the workflow does not exclusively depend on the work-in-progress limits—as the core practices suggest—but on determining the optimal relationship (solution) among the replenishment value, resource capacity, and work-in-progress limits. Such an approach ensures that the workflow pace on the Kanban board is sustainable by reducing the number of work items in queues as well as people's idleness. The proposed empirical approach runs a series of simulation scenarios aimed at helping to identify the optimal relationship among the three mentioned elements for generating a sustainable workflow pace and minimizing work/people's idleness
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Engineering Management
Early online date13 Nov 2021
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 Nov 2021


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