1. What is SLE?
The Service Level Expectations (SLEs for short) in Kanbanize are a configuration that defines the maximum time a card shall remain in a given column/lane/cell. SLEs provide an easy way to see which cards are taking longer than expected. This is the visual representation of SLEs on a card:
Note: SLEs visualization is available on all zoom levels except the bird-eye view.
2. How to create SLEs for your Board?
To configure SLEs on a given board, you must have the "Edit Workflow" privilege. Alternatively, you need to be a Workspace Manager for the corresponding workspace or an Account Owner.
Navigate to the 'Edit Workflow' to open the board configuration menu.
As you may notice from the image below, SLEs can only be configured for columns and cells that are part of the 'Requested' and 'In Progress' sections.
Note: SLEs can also be enabled per lane but will only apply to the In Progress section. This is because a card presumably spends all of its active time there.
Click on the clock icon (highlighted in the above image) in order to start creating your first SLE.
3. Main SLE properties
- Name - give a name to the SLE.
- Max cycle time - the maximum amount of time that should be spent on the tasks.
- Time units - choose the desired unit of time for the SLE - Days, Hours, or Minutes.
- Filter - this section displays the conditions under which the SLE will be active.
- Add cards filter - using this menu, you can add additional filters. For example, if you don’t want the SLE to apply to all the cards going through the column or swimlane, you can narrow it down to only specific cards, for example, cards of type “Defect” or cards with Critical priority.
After you expand the Advanced Settings, you will see the following:
- Configure Working Days (Time zone) - you can configure the time zone for the SLE. By default, the creator's time zone will be automatically selected. This will prevent any inconsistencies whenever there are differences between the time zones of the SLE creator and the board users.
- Configure Working Days - you can configure the working days for the column for more precise time measurement. By default, working days are set to Monday to Sunday.
- Configure Working Hours - you can configure the working hours for the column for even more precise time measurement. By default, the working hours are set to 00:00 - 24:00.
How to set up additional card filters for SLE?
When you click on 'Add card filters', you will see this window:
Let's say you only want to have the SLE available for cards of Critical priority - selecting the priority property from the above menu will allow you to do so.
Note: a single column can have multiple SLEs configured for it. For example, in a Customer Service/Support scenario, the team can have an SLA for a response time of 2 hours on regular requests (average priority), but they might also have another SLA which applies to critical incidents only (critical priority), and the response time for those requests would be significantly lower. It is also worth noting that blocking a card will not stop the SLE counter, and a card might still exceed its SLE even though it has been blocked.
4. Exceeded SLEs analysis
In order to analyze the exceeded SLEs in your boards/workflows, you can check out the dedicated charts from the analytics module - the Exceeded SLEs Scatter Plot and the Excdeeded SLEs Heat Map.
More on those charts can be found in the dedicated articles linked below:
It is worth noting that SLEs will be visualized by the charts whenever they exit the location where the SLE is configured. If a card/initiative has exceeded its SLE for column X and is still located in that column, it will not be visualized by the charts.
5. Board/Workflow modifications
In most cases, a board's initial design is rarely the final one, and users might need to make some adjustments, such as creating another workflow, disabling an existing workflow, or adding/removing columns/lanes from their primary workflow.
It is worth noting that if a workflow is temporarily disabled, any SLEs configured on it will still be active until they are explicitly removed, or the workflow itself is permanently deleted.
If a workflow gets copied between two boards, any SLE configurations will be preserved and available on the destination board.
If an SLE location (e.g., a column, subcolumn, or lane) gets deleted, any SLEs configured for that location will also be deleted.
If a new SLE gets created on a board/workflow and there are some work items available in the location (where the SLE is created), the time that those work items accumulated in that location will be added to their SLE time (if the work items match the SLE settings and conditions).