In this part of Small Project Management Guidelines we will focus on a project management tool that is used for the task management. In this case we will be using Trello board as an example tool that is simple to use for that purpose.

The board

The Trello board serves the purpose of organizing and monitoring the project progress. Cards are added to the board and then the team adjust their statuses. Columns are used to indicate ongoing and done processes. All completed cards are moved to the Done list. To ensure that the team is working efficiently, Scrum-ban methodology states that a team member should be working on no more than one task at a time. To make sure this rule is followed, scrum ban uses WIP (work in progress) limit. WIP limit is usually equal to the number of people in the team, but could be changed based on the team work specifics. Below you will find some information about individual columns that can be used in the board as well as card labels to indicate the purpose of tasks.

Pull principle

In Scrum-ban tasks are not assigned to the team members by the team leader or project manager. Each team member chooses a card from the Iteration backlog column and they are starting to work on it. This guarantees a smooth process flow, where all the team members are equally busy at all times.

Proposed types of columns

  1. Project information and minutes for meetings –   Important information from the meetings.
  2. Backlog – Ideas, features to implement, but not yet confirmed for the next iterations.
  3. Iteration backlog – Cards that are approved for the current iteration after the planning meeting. Feel free to pull a card from this list. Tasks with highest priority are placed at the top.
  4. Analysis – Talk, ask questions, complete all needed information before you start implementation.
  5. Analysis (done) – Pull a card here when the analysis is finished and you have everything prepared to start implementation.
  6. Implementation – You can start creating graphics, writing code, updating documentation, etc.
  7. Implementation (done) – Pull a card here when the implementation is finished. Ask the other party to verify your work. Don’t forget to add a comments / link to pull request, etc.
  8. Acceptance review – The purpose of this column is to preliminarily verify by the other party if screenshots / videos / documents of a new implemented feature / fixed issue / prepared screen design look and work as he assumed. The other party representative should add himself as a member and pull the card to this column. In case any errors are found, fix them in this column. Don’t move the card to the implementation column once again – cards can’t return to previous columns.
  9. Acceptance review (done) – The other party representative should pull a card here when the review is finished and all issues found during review has been fixed.
  10. Code review – If the task requires changes of the codebase, another person from Codete’s team should review your work. Reviewer should add himself as a member of the card before he pulls it. In case any errors are found, fix them in this column. Don’t move the card to the implementation column once again – cards can’t return to previous columns.
  11. Code review (done) – Reviewer should pull a card here when the code review is finished and all found issues have been fixed. Now you can ask your tester to check your work.
  12. Alpha testing – It’s time for internal testing. Tester should add himself as a member of the card before he pulls it. Tester should write and perform functional tests, taking into account acceptance criteria of the task. In case if any issues, they should be fixed in this column. Don’t move the card to the implementation column once again – cards can’t return to previous columns.
  13. Alpha testing (done) – Tester should pull a card here when all issues has been resolved.
  14. Done – Merge, deploy, you finished your task!

Proposed labels of cards

  1. Feature – New function implementation.
  2. Graphic & Design – Screen design update, animation/font delivery.
  3. Important information – Information of great importance.
  4. Bug – Bug fix.
  5. Minutes – Minutes from meetings.
  6. Task – Documentation improvement, API update, repository configuration.
  7. Research – Verification of possible solutions.
  8. Project information – Project assumptions.
Developers project management tool Trello Board

Conclusion

Good project management tool is very important as this will be the main place where tasks and requirements are stored. An appropriate tool should be chosen based on project size and people’s preferences. For bigger project usually more powerful tools would be a good solution (like f.e. Jira), but for smaller ones, we suggest sticking to simpler, more easy-to-use tools with nice drag and drop usability like Trello.

 


 

This article was created by Paweł Kowalczyk and Paweł Dyrek.

Codete’s Small Project Management Guidelines:

iOS Software Engineer

A software engineer over the last decade, crafting iOS apps since iPhone OS 3.0. Beloved in Swift, cutting teeth on Objective-C, currently learning Xamarin and C#. Hungry for new challenges and always eager to explore new things. Findable on Twitter, LinkedIn and GitHub as well as on Stack Overflow helping fellow developers. A technical writer, occasional coach and speaker. Privately happy husband and father with severe addiction to music and healthy lifestyle.