1. An Introduction to the Initiatives Workflow
Every board you create in Kanbanize has two default sections: the Initiatives Workflow and the Cards workflow.
The Initiatives Workflow (1) is the top swimlane on your board, designed for Senior team members/Project managers. The Initiatives Workflow is the place where you can create Initiatives (bigger tasks or projects) and track their automated progress.
With the Workflow Designer, you can customize the Initiatives workflow to map your unique workflow. You can create custom columns and swimlanes to reflect more complex scenarios.
Moreover, the system allows you to add more than one Initiatives workflows in the board layout. If you prefer to visualize your projects into a calendar view you can enable the Timeline Wokrflow.
Brief description of the Initiative:
An initiative is a bigger task, epic, or a project, which you have to break down into smaller work items (cards). The small pieces of work (cards) get created and are positioned on the Cards Workflow (2). They are linked to the Initiatives as child cards.
This way you make the work more manageable and your team gets a better picture of what needs to be done.
For more information, please watch the video: "How to use the Initiatives Workflow".
Note: The system allows you to create dependencies between the Initiatives themselves.
2. How does the "Initiative Workflow" work?
The Initiatives move through the Initiative Workflow automatically only when entering a new stage: Requested -> In Progress -> Done.
How does it work? When a child card linked to the Initiative moves into a new stage on the Cards Workflow, the parent Initiative moves to the first column in the respective section.
To reflect the Initiative's status in the sub-columns of a given section, you can set up custom automation with Business Rules in order to trigger the automated Initiative movement or move the initiatives manually into the next stage at the team meetings.
When a team member moves a child card linked to an Initiative to the "In Progress" column on the Cards Workflow lane (Team Board level) -> the Initiative will automatically move to the "In Progress" column on the Initiative Workflow lane.
Each Initiative has a progress indicator that shows the percentage of the completed cards.
When all child cards, linked to the Initiative are moved to the "Done" column, the Initiative progress indicator will become 100% and it will automatically move to the "Done" column of the Initiatives Workflow.
To learn more about the Initiative, please read the dedicated article.
3. How to manage the Initiatives Workflow?
The Initiatives workflow is available upon board creation. It can be managed either by users with Account Owner privileges or by Workspace Managers.
To change some of its settings or to customize it, select the Edit Workflow icon at the top of the board interface to turn on the edit mode of the board.
From the edit board panel, users with the relevant permissions can do the following actions:
-> Rename the Initiatives Workflow swimlane, if necessary.
(1) Configure the Built in Rules*
(2) Configure the Cycle time of the lane
(3) Delete the lane
(4) Disable the lane - this action will hide the Initiatives workflow lane for all board members
You have full control to configure the automated movement of Initiatives in accordance with your use cases and preferences. The configuration panel is available in the “Edit Workflow” view.
Note: By default, all rules are enabled, which preserves the current initiative behavior.
- If you switch off the first rule, the Initiative will not automatically move to "In progress", when their first child card is started.
- If you switch off the second rule, the Initiatives will not move to “Done”, when all their child cards are completed.
If you deselect all checkboxes, you will stop the Initiative automated movement completely and you have to move them manually.
4. How to customize the Initiatives Workflow?
Go to the Edit Workflow page to be able to customize the Initiatives Workflow lane.
Create new columns
- Hover on any of the columns and the three-plus buttons appear to the left, right and bottom of the box (img. 1). Click the plus sign to create more stages in the Initiatives Workflow. You can name columns anything you like just click on the title and it instantly turns into an editable text box. Similarly, you can easily set up the limit and the number of cards per row.
Important: Don't forget to save the changes you made -> click Save at the top right corner of the screen.
Create new swimlanes
- The Portfolio lane is the default swimlane of the Initiatives Workflow.
With the Workflow designer, you can create additional swimlanes after the default lane to classify Initiatives of different teams, projects, etc.
Hoven on the Portfolio lane cell and click the plus sign to create a new swimlane (img.2).
Tip: use the pallet icon in the cell to color the new swimlane for better visualization.
From the gear icon, you can set the lane limit.
Please, check the dedicated article to learn more about the board edit mode options.
5. How to freeze the Initiatives Workflows?
To freeze the Initiatives Workflow lane, use the pin icon located on the top right side of the board interface. The pin icon appears on hover.
By freezing the Initiatives workflow, you will be able to scroll through the board and still see the Initiatives Workflow at the top of your board layout.
This will improve the overall visibility and will facilitate the breakdown process of the Initiatives.
Please, check the following article to learn how to create an Initiative.