What is a Lead and Cycle Time Diagram for?

The Lead and Cycle Time diagram of Kanban Tool can be used for measuring the average cycle time of tasks. To best understand it, simply take note of the heading that allows a choice of options for the graph - it says:

Show how long it takes chosen tasks with chosen parameters to get from chosen column on a Kanban board to another column within a set time frame.

Once you’ve chosen the parameters that interest you, a graph will be generated. You can click on the blue points to get more details about the tasks worked on in that period.
This will give you information about the time passed from the task’s creation to its completion: the cycle time.

Lead and Cycle Time Diagram

It’s also possible to get more comprehensive information about the lead and cycle times. To do so, you simply need to change the values for chosen columns (“from” and “to”) - rather than seeing the time value for tasks to travel from “Backlog” to “Done”, you’d be checking the time they spend in between “Doing” and “Done”.

This is what gives you the information on the actual time spent on tasks (cycle time) which can be compared to the time tasks spent on the board in general (lead time), which is, in its core, information about your team and process throughput.

Learn more about the Lead and Cycle Time diagrams or What is the Lead Time in Your Process?