Distributed Kanban with Limited Geographical Distance: Analyzing Lean Principles Pull, Work in Progress and Kaizen


Although the software development methodology Kanban, which refers and relates to the concepts and ideas of Lean Manufacturing originating in the Japanese automobile industry, was initially developed and used within distributed teams, correlating research is lacking, incomplete and relatively young as a field. This paper addresses the need for research in this field and investigates three specific aspects of Kanban in distributed teams: Pull System, Work In Progress Limit and the concept of Kaizen culture (continuous improvement) narrowed by the distribution, size and life cycle of the team. Our qualitative methodology is based on a case study where empirical data was collected through the use of semi-structured expert interviews. The evaluative strategy is qualitative content analysis. The results of this study show that challenges and complications result from the use of Kanban, but it is effective within distributed teams. The observed challenges are discussed in detail and we conclude with eight recommendations for practicing Kanban in a distributed team as well as indicators for future research directions.

Talk: ENASE 2019 : 14th International Conference on Evaluation of Novel Approaches to Software Engineering, Heraklion, Kreta, Griechenland; 05-04-2019 - 05-05-2019; in: “Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Evaluation of Novel Approaches to Software Engineering”, ACM New York, NY, USA, (2019), ISBN: 9789897583759; 210 - 217
Thomas Grechenig
Thomas Grechenig
Ao.Univ.Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr.techn.