Kanban Pull System: Main Principles
Every software developer knows about the Kanban method. However, only few people know that it can be applied to any industry. Its functionality is extremely wide. If we learn it, we will be able to make our work more efficient. So, let’s talk about Kanban pull systems.
This term may seem new for software developers. That is because it comes from the business sphere like the Kanban system itself. Before giving the Kanban pull system definition, let’s find out what a pull system actually is.
There are two types of work organization in modern manufacturing
The first of them is called the push system. This term describes the enterprise that manufactures its products regardless of the customer’s demands. Such approach to manufacturing has lots of disadvantages. First of all, it violates the main rule of economics that says that the demand formulates the supply, not the other way around. It means that the enterprise that works in accordance with such methodology risks to lose its customers and fail eventually. The main thing that every enterprise should do to survive the competitive struggle is to consider the requirements of its customers. The push systems ignore this rule. It may lead them to great turbulence.
The second type of manufacture managing is called the pull system. Its main idea is to consider the customer’s demands while creating the production. It means that all process of manufacturing must be based on the customer’s demands. They determine everything, from the materials required to make the future production to the terms of its delivery. Such system of management has lots of advantages. First of all, the enterprises that use it eliminate the overproduction. The customer always knows what he needs, that is why the companies that use pull system of management have more chances in competitive struggle than the push system based enterprises. However, such system of management also has some disadvantages. In most cases they are related with raw supply. If you want to create a high quality product that meets all customer’s requirements, you should find the proper material for it. It is not always a simple task. Most enterprises that use pull system of management have to invent new solutions to find the proper material for their production.
Luckily, this disadvantage does not play any role when comes to software development. This industry does not require large amounts of raw material to create the final product.
Kanban pull system definition in software development is very simple. It is any project management system that uses Kanban methodology and that is based on user and customer requests. Actually, any Kanban project in software development is based on user stories which formulate its backlog. That is the reason why we cannot talk about Kanban push systems. They simply do not exist. All Kanban projects use pull systems for project management. That is the main reason for their success. Any Kanban-based software development project may be an example of Kanban pull system.