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How can the WIP Limit runtime policies improve your efficiency?

If your aim is to apply the Kanban method, in the true sense of the approach, within your team during the scope of a long-term or short-term project, keeping to your predefined WIP limits is essential. They represent one of the tenets of Kanban and must be encouraged and obeyed throughout the course of the work to truly achieve your collective goal of maximum productivity. These new runtime policies, in their automatic and immediate response to events related to WIP in the account, help to add visibility to the process of keeping work in progress limits and make the breach of a limit an actionable instead of a passive event.

When it comes to encouraging the rules of Kanban, whether you’re a project manager or a team leader, it’s simply not enough to talk the talk, you have to set up the runtime policy to back it up as well. 

Policy #1: WIP Limit is Reached


Performance boosting automatic actions you can set up using this runtime policy include:

  • getting an email and in-app notification if a WIP limit somewhere in the account is reached
  • block last card added to the column when WIP limit is exceeded
  • move last card added to the column to requested when WIP limit is exceeded (this essentially prevents the column from accepting any further cards until the ones that are already there have been completed and moved to done)

Policy #2: WIP Limit is Exceeded


The second new policy is a higher stakes version of the first. It supports the idea that a WIP limit might be reached without the need for intervention or rearrangement, however, when exceeded, the WIP limit has the potential to point out significant problems in the work flow.

 Keep Kanbanizing!

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