Kanban vs. Scrum vs. Agile Methodology


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Kanban vs. Scrum vs. Agile

Over the years, project management has evolved with the advancement of technology. There are now many tools and techniques available for project management to help facilitate even the most difficult challenges. Thanks to this evolution, lengthy procedures, follow-ups, mismanagements, and lack of productivity all can be tackled. However, the vast trends, tools, and techniques can be  confusing, which is why in this article we explain the differences between the most famous words associated with project management – Kanban, Scrum and Agile.

Kanban Vs. Scrum Vs. Agile – What’s the Difference

Let’s start with agile. Project managers most commonly describe agile as an umbrella term or method of breaking down large complex projects into small chunks of manageable tasks. There are also many kinds of agile software that make the whole process even smoother and streamlined. Seeing the efficiency and the success rate of the methodology, many large industries have also adopted agile. Kanban and scrum, however, are themselves two agile methodologies working on the base of the “pull” strategy. There is a minor yet striking difference between both the cycle of a project from the product owner to the customer.

Nicholas Carrier, an associate partner in London, words the difference of agile with the other two terms quite nicely. According to him, if you want to work your projects in an agile manner, you will have two ways of doing it, the scrum or the Kanban way. Regardless of which method you choose, it will be an agile method.

Agile Pros and Cons

The agile project management follows a methodology or mannerism of incremental and iterative approach. This is, in itself, a noticeable change from the traditional linear approach. It is a significant pro since it focuses the business attention on the ever-changing needs and requirements of product consumption and delivery in small releasable units. Another pro is that agile brings more focus and importance to teamwork, transparency, and accountability and successfully aligns client goals with that of the companies.

The con of agile project management rises from a significant level of flexibility in the approach. There is a possible chance that the flexibility might impact the final product delivery date and the product itself.

Scrum Pros and Cons

Scrum is time-bound. It breaks down the development cycle into small work periods called sprints. The sprints, depending on the complexity of the projects, can last from 2 weeks to a month, with daily meetings called stand-ups. The pros of scrum include high transparency and project visibility, flexibility to change, clearly defined roles, better collaboration, and time-bound deliverables.

The breakdown of complex tasks, on the other hand, can be a con, since there are chances of scope creep or inadequate definition of tasks.

Kanban Pros and Cons

Unlike Scrum, Kanban isn’t particularly time-bound. It is a continuous flow of unbreakable work and continuous delivery. Kanban doesn’t change the existing work flow of any project. Instead, it enhances the organizations’ working process to be more lean, visual, and doable for the entire team without overburdening them. In addition to these pros, Kanban is also optimizing tasks between teams.

The most apparent con to Kanban is the lack of time-frame, which can lead to reduced productivity. With Kanban, we also run the risk of losing speed.

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