Main Components
of the Kanban BoardWelcome to the world of Kanban - the ultimate way to streamline workflows!

Kanban boards are the modern way to manage projects, tasks, and workflows. With a visual representation of the work process, Kanban boards help you to increase productivity, reduce waste, and achieve your goals faster than ever before. Following are the core components of a Kanban board and their roles in making your work easier:

A Kanban Tool board with six columns


The horizonal sections of the Kanban board are its backbone. They represent different stages of your workflow, e.g., from To Do to Done. By organizing tasks into columns, you can see the progress of each element at a glance and quickly identify what needs doing next. You can customize columns to your needs by adding or removing processs steps or dividing them into sub-stages. You can add as many columns as your process demands.

Examples of a Kanban board's division into columns are:

  • To do, Doing, Done
  • Backlog, Planned, Doing, Review, Done
  • Requirements gathering, Requirements verification, Scheduled, Doing, Testing, Review, Deployed, Done.


If columns are the backbone of the Kanban board, then cards are its building blocks. They represent individual tasks or projects and are moved from one column to another as they progress through the workflow. With rich content, such as images, comments, or attachments, you can keep all the information you need in one place and access it easily.

An example Kanban card, standing for a project to develop a new product, might include the work description, the assigned manager, a due date, planned status updates, team comments, an internal ID value, file attachments, links to code repositories or external documentation, and more.

A Kanban Tool task card

Work in Progress (WIP) Limits

WIP limits help you focus on what's important and avoid wasteful multitasking. They ask you to set a maximum number of tasks that can be in progress at any given time in a column. With WIP limits, you can prioritize your work, reduce stress, and increase efficiency.

For example, you might set a WIP limit of four tasks for your In Progress column. It means that no more than four tasks should be in progress at once - you'll need to complete one of the existing tasks before starting yet another one. And if you don't, the WIP limit value will alert you of violating the safe number of concurrent ongoing tasks. Sticking to WIP limits is a fantastic way to avoid being overwhelmed and put all your efforts into the one task in front of you.


Swimlanes are horizontal divisions in a Kanban board, helping you to categorize tasks by project, type, client, priority, or any other criteria that fit your process. With swimlanes, you can keep related task cards together and maintain a clear workflow overview.

For example, you could use swimlanes to differentiate tasks with high, medium, and low priority, or by product A and product B. The more visually clear the board is, the easier it will be to prioritize your work and ensure that nothing falls through the cracks.

A Kanban Tool board with swimlanes and a visibly exceeded WIP limit


Card tags are a quick and easy way to categorize, organize and filter your cards. Tags - or labels - add context, highlight important tasks, and help you locate the tasks you need to focus on to achieve specific goals.

For example, you could use tags for items relating to a bug, feature request, and enhancement or - using a different approach, add a user story ID to tasks that relate to or impact that Story. Filtering the board by labels of your own creation will help prioritize work, stay organized, and make informed decisions.

In conclusion, Kanban boards are an effective solution for managing your workflow. Whether working on a single project or managing multiple work areas, Kanban boards can help you stay organized, increase productivity, and achieve your goals faster. Thanks to the main components of a Kanban board, you can streamline your process, reduce waste, and start focusing only on what's important.

Start using Kanban boards today and experience the difference for yourself! Kanban Tool delivers easy-to-use project boards true to the Kanban method, with several supplemental features allowing you to streamline the workflow.

Get started now!

Test the Kanban board
components in action
with Kanban Tool:

Lean Kanban Project Management Software

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