1. What is an Initiative?
The Initiative is a bigger task/project/epic story, which you need to break down into smaller work items/tasks. The work items which represent deliverables/actionable steps to complete a project are linked to the Initiative as child cards and they give your entire team the scope of what has to be accomplished (img.1).
The Initiative can be created in the "Requested" column of the Initiative Workflow only (1).
It moves through the Initiative workflow completely automatically when its linked child cards are processed in the Cards Workflow lane (2) or anywhere in your account (img.1)
How does it work? When one of the child cards is moved to "In progress" -> then the Initiative moves to "In progress" too. When all child cards linked to the Initiative are moved to "Done", the whole Initiative will automatically move to "Done".
For more information, please watch the video: "How to use Initiative Workflow".
2. How to Create an Initiative?
There are several ways to create an Initiative:
2.1 Right-click on the Initiative Workflow lane and create the Initiative. The Initiative will appear as a Kanban card with its belonging properties -> fill in the information related to the Initiative and Add it to the lane.
Click on Update card to create the Initiative in the "Requested" column of the Initiative Workflow (Portfolio Lane).
2.2 Use the green plus icon at the top right side of the board -> Create new Initiative.
2.3 Drag & drop an existing card from your Cards Workflow lane to the Initiative Workflow.
The system will prompt you to select either Create New parent card or Convert to an Initiative.
- If you select Create New parent card-> the existing card that you have used to create the initiative will be automatically linked to the New initiative as a child card and then it will be positioned back at its previous board location.
- If you select Convert into Initiative -> the card will instantly become an Initiative.
2.4 You can create an Initiative of multiple cards, using the drag & drop option.
Select multiple cards that belong to one project -> drag & drop them to the Requested column of the Initiative Workflow lane. The first card in the row will be duplicated as an Initiative and all project related cards (including the first card )will be automatically linked to it as child cards. Once the Initiative is created, they will be placed back in their old position on the Team board where to be processed.
3. Working with Initiatives - the general concept
Create an Initiative and break it down into smaller work items. Once you create the work items on the Cards Workflow lane of the same Board or any other Board in your account, leave it to the team to process and complete the tasks. As they progress, all the important changes will be reflected in the Initiatives on your Kanban Portfolio lane.
- Child cards view on the Initiatives
Each child card is represented by a colored rectangle on the Initiative card and every rectangle holds details for the child card (on hover).
The color stands for the current card position in the Team board workflow:
- if the rectangle is Blue, the child card is "In Requested" column
- if the rectangle is Orange, the child card is "In progress" column
- if the rectangle is green, the child card is in "Done" column
Example: In the image below, you can see that the Initiative named "New Website development" holds three child cards. One of them is "In Requested" column (this is the blue one); the other (colored in orange) is in "In Progress" column and the last one (colored in green) is completed.
Double Click on each of the rectangles to directly open the child card and check its details or leave your comment via the "@" symbol.
- Blocked Initiative
In case that a child card is blocked, the Initiative card will be blocked/colored in red too. The Project manager should resolve the problem and find a solution as soon as possible to unblock it.
- Initiative Progress Indicator
Each Initiative has a Progress Indicator bar that shows the percentage of the completed child cards.
For example: If two out of five child cards linked to the Initiative are moved to "Done" on the Cards Workflow lane, the progress indicator will display 40% of completion. When all child cards linked to the Initiative are moved to "Done", the Initiative progress indicator will display 100% and the Initiative will be considered completed. This is the default behavior of the feature.
Moreover, the Initiative progress algorithm indicates and accumulates each child card completion according to its size. If the child cards (work items) linked to the Initiative are sized, the progress indicator works as follows:
For example: if we have two completed child cards sized "2" out of five cards in total linked to the Initiative, the Progress Indicator bar will display 23%. If a single card sized "10" is moved to Done, the Progress bar of the Initiative will display 56% of completion.
This gives a better perspective on the progress of tasks ranked in different categories of difficulty.
- The Initiative Settings
Use the three dotted icon that belongs to each Initiative to:
- View Details- to open and check/edit the Initiative details.
- Filter Children - all child cards linked to the initiative will be filtered out on the Cards Workflow lane.
- Delete the initiative.
4. How does the automation on the Initiative Workflow work?
The built-in automation updates the status of the Initiatives, so their progress can be easily tracked.
When a team member moves a Child card, which has been linked to an Initiative to the "In Progress" column on the Cards Workflow lane (Team Board level) -> the Initiative card will automatically move to "In Progress" in the Initiative Workflow.
When all child cards, linked to the Initiative are moved to "Done" on the Cards Workflow lane (Team Board level) -> the Initiative card will automatically move to "Done" in the Initiative Workflow.
This helps managers to see at a glance the completion status of all Initiatives that they have in the organization.
Read the following article to find out how to make a breakdown of an Initiative into smaller work items.