Introduction to the Analytics in Kanbanize
The analytics in Kanbanize work per board. Click the Analytics icon on the top of each board to access the Analytics page.
The Analytics screen presents 5 categories: Cycle Time, Throughput, WIP, Flow, Forecasting, each available as a tab item on the page. Click on a tab button to view the charts for each of the respective metrics. The Scatter plot belongs to the Cycle time category.
Note: Before start using the analytics make sure that you have configured the Cycle time tracking for the respective board. You can choose which columns from your workflow to be included in the analytics as well as for the calculation of the card "cycle time".
To learn how to configure cycle time per board, please check the dedicated article.
** If you checkmark the "Ignore Cycle time" configuration, the system ignores the current Cycle time configuration.
Respectively, the selected Analytics module accounts and visualizes the time cards spend in each of the process stages. This allows having an in-depth analysis of both value-adding activities and “queues”, when it is necessary.
Introduction to Cycle Time Histogram
The Cycle time histogram is similar to the Cycle time Scatterplot, but it visualizes the data differently.
The Cycle time histogram aggregates the data and gives you the cycle time-frequency distribution of the completed cards in your workflow. To learn more about the Cycle time histogram concept, please check the dedicated article in our blog.
How to set up the Cycle Time Histogram?
From the left side of the panel, you can control which data you can see on the diagram within a predetermined time frame.
First, you define the time period ("Requested After" date and "Finished Before" date).
Important: The chart will visualize only cards that have entered your flow after the "requested date" that you define. In case that the cards were in your flow before the requested date and are completed within the "finished before" date, they won't be displayed.
Then you select the workflows that you want to analyze using the Cycle time histogram. The histogram takes into consideration all cards from the selected workflows. Note that you can add single or multiple workflows.
In addition, you can apply extra filters (Add cards filter). For example, you may want to see only cards with high priority or cards that are of a certain type.
How does this chart work?
Across the "x" axis is a representation of time i.e. Cycle time.
On the "y" axis is the number of work items.
You have to enable the percentiles in order to get the probabilistic view of the histogram.
What's that telling us?
The histogram shows us the distribution of cycle time-frequency of all completed cards on the selected workflow. Percentile lines show the probability that your team will complete a task within certain cycle time.
When we look at the chart we can say that:
- 50% of the working items in that workflow are usually completed in 2 days or less.
- 70% of the working items in that workflow are usually completed in 3 days or less
- 85% of the items in that workflow are usually completed in 7 days or less
- 95 % of the items in that workflow are usually completed in 17 days or less
You can use the percentiles to define your service level agreement. To be on the safe side, we recommend considering the 85th or the 95the percentile.
The right side of the Histogram is called “tail” (where the bars are getting shorter). The longer the tale, the worst, because it means that work items can be completed anywhere between 1 day and 40 days.
If your cycle time histogram displays higher bars on the left and a long tail to the right, it means that your process is inconsistent and your cycle time is varying.
The reasons might be different: some blockers that slow down your pace, lack of consistency in the breakdown process, or bad sizing.
Tip: You will always have a tail, but try to analyze the reasons, take a deep look at the problematic tasks, and try making the tail shorter. Ideally, you have work items only to the left side.
The analytics use one calendar day as the lowest possible time unit.
For example: The card was created 30 minutes ago and was moved to "In progress". The system shows 1 day for this card.
The card was created late yesterday at 23:00 P.M. and you take a look at the chart in the morning at 9:00 A.M. (i.e. around 10 hours after the creation). The system will show 2 days as the card has been created yesterday and is still being worked on today.
The Calendar time unit is used for analytics due to the fact that most of the modern Kanban systems are driven by client requests. As such, clients expect exact delivery dates or ranges that are calendar-based. They do not care about holidays, working hours, man-days, cycle, and lead times.
That being said, the Cycle Time Histogram allows for recalculation based on working days.
Note: that the X axis (where applicable) would still display all calendar days/weeks.
The selection of working days recalculates the cycle time for all cards shown in the graph, but this would not alter their actual completion date on the Scatterplot for example.
Let's say we have a card that was moved to ‘In Progress’ on a Wednesday e.g. 06.01.2021 and was completed on Saturday 09.01.2021 and the team is working from Monday to Friday.
If no working days option is selected, the card's cycle time would fall under the 4 days cycle time bar on the Histogram.
If working days (Mon-Fri) are selected for the Cycle Time Histogram, the position of that card will change from the 4 days cycle time bar to the one for 3 days.
In case that you need precise cycle and log times for internal reporting, use the Advanced search capabilities with the different charts views and widgets.
Controls for this chart - customize your view
You can use the controls to change the "Cycle Time Histogram" simulation view and to apply additional filters. Please, check the short video below.
- Blocked items - include blocked time for the cards.
- Cursor - you can use the cursor options to display the cycle time, frequency or both of the current position of your mouse pointer.
- Percentiles - select and deselect percentiles to get the probabilistic view of the chart.
- Overlay- show cumulative %
- Layout - show/hide data control that allows you to zoom in and out of a specific interval within the selected time frame.
- Item Filter - filter your account data to display a smaller portion of data that you need to analyze.