Take advantage of Kanban Tool's great features. Find out how to send tasks to Archive, add information by external files, use email notifications, RSS feeds and how to filter your board and manage attachments. Together with tips on understanding the analytics.
To archive a task, please right-click on the Kanban card and use the dropdown menu to find the Archive option at the very top.
By default, this option is only available in the last column of your Kanban board. But should you wish to enable archives in any other column as well, please go to Settings - Board Editor and use the pencil icon under a chosen column’s name, to set its properties in a way, that will allow for tasks to be archived there (use the option is at the bottom of the column edition window).
To archive all tasks in a column, either right-click on the header of that column, or click on any empty space in that column, and select the Archive all option.
Using the archive is easy - to enter, click the + # archived tasks link at the top of your last column:
A list of all archived tasks for this particular column will be presented.
But note, that once you’re in this view, you can search through tasks archived on specific boards, swimlanes and columns. Also - you’re welcome to search the archive with the magnifier icon - it supports the same set of search queries, that Global Search of the boards does - learn more here.
Want your tasks to get archived automatically? Please view this page.
You can access all archived tasks from the + x archived tasks link, found next to the + add task link in all columns, that have any tasks archived.
Once in the Archive, simply right-click on the card that you want to place back on the Kanban board.
An option to Put back on the board will be shown to you.
You can also select multiple cards within the archive by clicking them with the CTRL key pressed, and un-archive a number of tasks in one go.
There are 3 basic situations when email notifications are sent:
When someone assigns a person to a task
When someone assigns a person to a checklist item
When someone adds a comment to a task and selects a person who should be notified about it.
If you want to be informed about the status changes of all tasks on a board, you need to subscribe to RSS.
You can choose not to be notified about task assignments, if you want to. To do this, please go to My Profile - Edit my details and un-check the space next to the Notify me by email when tasks are assigned to me.
The My profile section is available under your name in the Dashboard view.
Kanban Tool also offers a Work Summary email - sent to you at the end of each day. Find our how to set the time of arrival or disable it here.
You may also benefit from getting our Due Date Reminder email - sent either in the morning of the due dates, or at the end of the day, giving you a glimpse of work due tomorrow. Please see more details here.
Finally, there is a possibility of setting fully custom email notifications - where you decide what their content is about. Please see how to do this via Process Automation.
Kanban Tool provides advanced Kanban analytics and metrics in the form of:
Cumulative Flow diagram
It illustrates the process on a whole - by showing the distribution of work items in all process phases
(to do - doing - done).
You get to see in an instant how the team is performing. If things run smoothly, the horizontal bands, each color representing a different stage of the process, are staying regular - there are no sudden jumps or falls - with only the Tasks Done stripe growing.
The moment you notice a rise in the height of the In Progress band - this alarms of an issue - there are too many tasks, they're too difficult for particular team members, the team needs more time, more manpower or more information.
It's the most insightful metric of all - the situation is clear without you even entering the office. Find out more here.
Lead & Cycle Time diagram
This is the metric to go for seeing the average time it takes for a task to get from the point of being placed on the board to getting completed, with comparison to the time the task was actually being worked on - hence Lead vs Cycle time.
What you gain in result is information about the actual process throughput.
For most businesses it's a matter of great importance to keep the Lead Time is as short as possible, as this means the speed of the response to a customer's need is good. Find out more here.
These simple pie charts offer information on the shares different values - conditions take within the process at a given moment.
You can breakdown your board by:
lane or card types
your own custom field
This analysis can be done for a whole board or for specific lanes or columns separately.
The Time Report gives insight into the time usage of each team member or of an entire team.
It informs on how much time the team had spent on each task. This Report can be generated for all of your Kanban boards together, and it offers summary and detailed views. Find out more here. Note: the Time Report is only available on the Enterprise service plan.
Furthermore, with Process Automation you can also generate own, custom email reports.
For example - you may set notifications for:
when timers on tasks run for more than a set amount of time
when time estimates exceed a given value
when specific types of tasks are not updated for a few days
when there are due dates approaching for specific task types, and many more.
The comment section will not be carried over when you duplicate a board (with tasks) or even duplicate a single task. Comments are specific to original task and will not be duplicated for practical reasons.
The user feedback we get suggests this approach is preferred by most users.
You can easily filter your tasks by a specific user.
One way to do it is pressing the button on the right side of the search box to see a drop-down context menu, with the available search filters.
Please press the Assigned to filter and choose the searched user from the list.
A quicker way to do this is to type:
- the user initials with an @ directly into the filter box.
Now your board will highlight the tasks that are assigned to this filtered user.
Note that both options have exactly the same effect.
Additionally to being able to show user assignments on one board with the filtering described above, you may also find one’s assignments across all boards with the global search functionality.
The difference between filtering and searching is in their range: filtering is limited to 1 board, and searching applies to all boards you have access to.
You may also save the filter you’ve applied, so that it will check for what’s assigned to you next time you log in too!
Please read more about this here.
Email notifications are sent automatically when a task or checklist item is assigned to someone, or when a new comment is made.
You can also receive a daily email notifying you of all your tasks due today.
Each user can enable or disable their email notifications from My profile - Edit my details.
The vertical axis shows the time spent working on tasks, so the Cycle Time of your process, while the horizontal axis indicates time passed regardless of any actions on tasks - in other words, the Lead Time.
To view the Lead Time for a particular task, please click on a blue point on your diagram.
The blue line shows the board’s average Cycle Time.
By default, it is not possible to delete all tasks from a column in one action.
We highly recommend that you archive tasks, rather than delete them, since archived tasks are still part of the analysis of your process, whereas the deleted ones aren’t.
However, a Delete all function is available through the Developer Tools Power-Up.
To use it, go to Settings - Power-Ups, enable Developer Tools and add this link to the Developer Tools dialogue window: /scripts/delete-all/delete-all.js
It will add a new context menu option, letting you Delete all tasks in any given column:
Attachments can only be downloaded individually. In order to grab all files attached to a card, you need to download them one after another.
To download a file, simply open the task and click on the download icon displayed when hovering over an attachment.
File attachments are only supported in Team and Enterprise plans, not in the Free plan.
You can change your account plan in Account Administration - Plan & Billing details. The difference between Team and Enterprise plans has been described here.
Free plan users can still use the attachments field of their cards to attach files from Google Drive, Box, Dropbox or OneDrive.
Simply activate your file hosting service integration in board Settings - Power-Ups and connect your files to Kanban cards.
When working on a large board, there may be times when you’d like to move a task between non adjacent columns (i.e. from backlog straight to done). There are 2 great scripts in Developer Tools, that can be activated to make this easier:
Move to done - it will create an additional open card menu option for sending the task straight to the done column
Change column - this one adds a Change column option to the closed card context (right-click) menu.
You are welcome to search through all of the boards and tasks that you have been given access to, with the Search function, opened with the magnifying glass icon:
The search box can also be opened with the standard keyboard short-cut: /. Note, that the type-in box, that was previously a search / filter entry box is now only used for filtering.
Tasks can be searched for by their name or External ID#. Important:: searching requires you to use a minimum of 3 characters.
Getting the search results is quick and along with the tasks you were looking for, you will be given a hint of the values you searched by, for instance: when looking for tasks with .png files attached - names of the files will be listed below the found tasks:
Please note, that a single search result is limited to 500 tasks.
How to search if I only recall a task name?
When looking for a specific task, i.e. recalling its name but unsure of what board or column it’s in - just enter the task name right into the search box. No quotation marks needed, regardless of how many words the name consists of:
How to search if I only recall some task details?
It’s more likely that you will be looking for a comprehensive view of tasks meeting a specific set of criteria. For that purpose, a significant number of additional queries can be applied to customize the search to specific factors.
The way this works is: you need to give the criteria you want to search by - in other words name the condition, such as assigned to or created by and then the value: assigned to whom, created by whom.
For instance - created_by:@SD - this finds all tasks created by SD, and attachment:? - this finds all tasks with any attachments.
How to search for anything that was assigned to me: tasks & checklist items?
To get this information, just enter your initials with an @, like this: @XY or @xy.
You will see that full task assignments are hinted for by initials in a little square, while checklist item assignments are listed as little checklist ticks.
The Search Criteria & the Search Value
For the purpose of making it easy to understand, we’ll refer to these 2 as Criteria (LVAL) and Value (RVAL). Between the criteria and value, an operator needs to be used, and most of the times, it will just be “:”.
EXAMPLE assigned_to:@AB - this searches for all tasks assigned to AB or: attachment:.doc - this searches for all tasks with “.doc” attachments.
Explaining LVAL & RVAL
Description:’this is a task in which’ - this searches for all tasks that have this phrase (this is a task in which) in their description.
In the above example - description is the criteria (LVAL) ‘this is a task which’ is the value (RVAL)
and the : is the operator (relates criteria to value).
Criteria you can search by (LVAL):
Criteria 1: User initials (LVAL)
The accepted formatting is: @XY or @xy - "@" is always necessary.
Criteria 2: Special Criteria (LVAL):
assigned_to - finds task assignments - checklist assignment is not included
created_by - finds tasks created by particular user
type - finds tasks of a specific card type, using card type names as you've named them yourself
board - searches for tasks from a specific board
EXAMPLE board:"Project X" - this will list all tasks from board named Project X (first 500 of them).
Note: this query is much more useful when used as 1st criteria of many:
EXAMPLE board:"Project X" attachment:x1.png
swimlane - searches for tasks in a named swimlane
EXAMPLE swimlane:"Project 209"
stage - searches by column name - as you have named them
EXAMPLE stage:done Invoices
EXAMPLE stage:'to do' Task 1 Please note, how for any criteria or value that uses more than 1 word, quotation marks or apostrophes are being used.
checklist - searches through checklist items only
attachment - searches by attachment name
checklist_for - searches for tasks with checklist items assigned to specifically the person you give as value
You can also check if there are any tasks with checklist assignments, by typing:
Criteria 3: Task Attributes (LVAL):
id - task ID, can be read from an open task URL
board_id - board ID, can be read from an open board URL
recurring_schedule - searches through tasks that are due to recur in a specified time-frame
EXAMPLE recurring_schedule:2017-03-20 type:invoices
description - searches through task descriptions
EXAMPLE example: description:XYZ
EXAMPLE @AM description:xyz Note, how when wanting to search through tasks assigned to specific user, their initials need to go before any other criteria and value.
priority - defines what task priority to look for. Note, that Kanban Tool sees priorities as:
0 [normal], 1 [high] and -1 [low]
EXAMPLE priority:-1 xyz
EXAMPLE @am priority:1 description:"do it urgently"
tags - searches by tags found in tasks
EXAMPLE @XY tags:urgent tags:"external work" Note, how when looking for multiple values of the same criteria found in one task, the criteria name needs to be re-entered.
created_at, updated_at, due_date - these all refer to the time-frame in which a task was either created, updated or for when its due date was set
EXAMPLE @AM created_at:2016-05 tags:urgent priority:1
EXAMPLE due_date:<2017-03-17 (lists tasks with due dates up until 17th of March)
EXAMPLE due_date:2017-02-18 (lists tasks with due date exactly on Feb 18th)
EXAMPLE due_date:>2017-03-01 (lists tasks with due dates further than or on March 1st)
EXAMPLE due_date:>2017-03 (lists tasks with due dates further than or in March)
comments_count - searches by the number of comments posted for a task
EXAMPLE comments_count>10 tags:urgent (all tasks with more than 10 comments and with the "urgent" tag)
EXAMPLE @AM comments_count<3
EXAMPLE comments_count=0 (searches for tasks that have no comments made on them)
EXAMPLE comments_count:? priority:1 (looks at how many comments are in each card with high priority)
size_estimate - refers to and searches by the Task Difficulty field
EXAMPLE size_estimate>=2 board:'Jake LK Board'
subtasks_count - checks for the number of checklist items
EXAMPLE subtasks_count>3 board:"KBL project" priority:1
subtasks_completed_count - this query only looks at the checklist items that have been completed
EXAMPLE subtasks_completed_count=1 board:"Jameson Bard And Co."
attachments_count - searches by the number of files attached to the found cards
EXAMPLE attachments_count>=8 board:"Purchasing Department"
EXAMPLE attachments_count<20 attachments_count>15 (this will find cards with attached between 15 and 20 files)
custom_field_1 - (and "custom_field_2" down to "custom_field_10")
- this search looks for cards with specified values in custom fields.
Note, that for as long as you know the name that was given to a specific custom field, you can use that name instead of "custom_field_1".
For instance: If a "custom_field_1" was called Number of People Invited, you could ask for -
EXAMPLE "Number of People Invited">=30
external_link - a text-based search through the links added to cards
EXAMPLE external_link:docs.google (will search for all cards that have an external link to Google Drive)
block_reason - searching through the reasons why tasks are blocked, so refers to blocked tasks only. Of course, what you'd be looking for here are the blocking reasons accepted and most used by your team.
EXAMPLE block_reason:"Needs more information"
EXAMPLE block_reason:? - this will list all of the blocked tasks
time_estimate - searches by the amount of time that was set as in the Estimated Time field.
EXAMPLE time_estimate>10:12 (searches for tasks with time estimate over 10 hrs. 12 minutes)
EXAMPLE time_estimate=02:00 Please note, that this time format is required: HH:MM and using other values may result in finding incorrect information.
timers_total - will list tasks for time worked via Time Tracking for an amount specified by value
EXAMPLE board:Orders timers_total>02:30
EXAMPLE timers_total>06:00 timers_total<08:30 Please note, "timers_total" value will be 100% accurate only for tasks that are not timed at the time of making the query.
timers_active_count - searches by how many team members are currently running Time Tracking timers for each task
EXAMPLE board:"Project GHY" timers_active_count>=1 (will find all tasks on which more than 1 person is currently running a timer)
EXAMPLE timers_active_count>=3 (will show all tasks on your account, on which there are 3 or more people working at the time of querying)
Criteria 4: Field Name (LVAL)
You are welcome to make queries by the field names that you find in a translated version of Kanban Tool:
EXAMPLE Beschreibung:'Das is'
As you can see - global search really does have some serious superpowers.
It’s been shown by what criteria you can search boards - let’s sum up the values and operators (what relates criteria to values) that are supported.
Values you can search by (RVAL):
As shown in the examples above, values can take form of:
Number of minutes, hours, days, months or years, as in: 20.minutes, 3.hours, 7.days, 2.months, 2.years. For singular numbers, you can also use minute, hour etc.
Note, that for some queries, you may want to use an additional indicator to specify whether to look in the future or past time, as in:
EXAMPLE due_date:>2.days.from_now vs.
A date - this is the supported format: 2015-01-02
Time - this is the supported format: HH:MM
User initials - @XY or @xy
Please note: user initials as RVAL (value for your chosen criteria) are supported for queries such as:
EXAMPLE checklist_for example: checklist_for:@DC
In any other case, you're welcome to add user initials to the beginning of a query, to limit the search results to tasks assigned to this person only
EXAMPLE @DC description:"XYZ" due_date:2017-03-04 priority:1
Complete list of search operators - what to use between LVAL & RVAL:
: matching value
EXAMPLE description:"Do you know"
:= an exactly equal value
:? shows all tasks that have any value in the given criteria
EXAMPLE checklist_for:? (will list all tasks that have checklist items assigned to anyone)
:! does not include
EXAMPLE priority:!1 (will show all tasks that have a priority other than high)
:< date-related only earlier than (a date)
EXAMPLE due_date:<2017-03-17 (will list tasks with due dates before 17 March 2017)
:> date-related only later than (a date)
EXAMPLE due_date:>2017-02-18 (will list tasks with dates past 18 Feb 2017)
= for numerical values only equal to
!= for numerical values only different to
EXAMPLE due_date!=2017-04-01 (will list tasks with dates on any day except for 2017-04-01)
> for numerical values only larger than
< for numerical values only less than
<= for numerical values only less than or equal to
>= for numerical values only larger than or equal to
Please note, there should be no spaces used between the criteria, operator and value, like so: LVAL:RVAL
Also, for searches that use multiple queries, simply list one query after another, separating by space, like so: LVAL:RVAL LVAL>RVAL LVAL=RVAL
EXAMPLE @DV board:”Project D” description:”Casey Toners” due_date>2017-03-20 priority:1
EXAMPLE checklist_for:@hg priority:1 due_date<=2017-03-01
As demonstrated in the above examples, any value that you are searching by (RVAL) that is made of more than 1 word, needs to be placed in quotation marks or apostrophes.
In case you have any problems with using the global search functionality, feel free to contact us for help.
Yes - for keeping a set of filters always active on your board, just use the Remember this filter option, listed in the filter menu:
It will remain applied for as long as you want, regardless of reloading the board view or closing the browser. In the latter event, when you re-open the board in a new window, you will be reminded that the filter is active with this little notice:
To remove the filter, use the clear filter option, shown on the filtering notice, or in the filters menu.
Kanban Tool’s due date reminder email is a great way of staying on top of all your due tasks across multiple boards.
At a time chosen by yourself, you’ll get an email notification of all your tasks due today (if an AM hour is chosen) or due on the next day (if a PM hour is selected).
The email will name due dates for tasks that were assigned to you or created by you and kept unassigned, so - by assumption - meant for you.
To manage your reminder email preferences, please go to My Profile, available under your name displayed in the top right corner of the dashboard view (all boards names). On the Edit my details page, choose the time of the email arrival and save changes.
If you’re not sure how to use due dates functionality with Kanban Tool, please visit this page.
Note: If you don’t want to receive these emails, simply select “Never” from the hour selection dropdown.
Kanban Tool Enterprise plan users can create own rules, for when due date notifications are emailed to them.
To create such an automation for your board, go to board Settings - Process Automation and type in the conditions for when emails should be sent.
Feel free to base it on the example below (click to view larger image):
For more examples of automation rules, please visit this page.
Yes, you can perform updates on a number of tasks at the same time.
Some basic changes - such as changing priority, type or assignment - can be made after a number of tasks were highlighted at once:
In order to make more advanced mass edits, please use the import functionality. For as long as you provide IDs of tasks already present on the board, the imported information will overwrite current data placed in them. It’s a very good way to manage changes across a large number of tasks in one go.
Process Automation is a clever way for you to determine an action on the board to be causing a reaction.
For example, you can make tasks of a certain type (color) get assigned to a relevant team member, you can change card priority basing on a set due date, or set a custom email notification for when a card meets a set of your requirements: task values, position in a given column or swimlane and many, many more.
To add an Automation Rule to a board, please go to board Settings - Process Automation and use the widget provided. There are a few examples predefined for your convenience, but you are most welcome to create any rules possible on your own. It’s easier than it may seem!
Please note, all Process Automation rules and trigger buttons are only available to users with Project Manager, Account Administrator or Owner privileges.
Below are a few examples of great automation use cases (Click on the images to see full sizes):
When a task is created in swimlane Project DYN, assign it to Francois:
When a task is moved to the Today column, change assignment to Rick, add a due date for right now and give it a high priority:
When a task receives a time estimate exceeding 20 hrs, send a notification to Aksel, the team supervisor:
When any task on the board is updated in any way, send a notification</strong> to Jónsi.
Note, that leaving a field blank is also recognized as a selection criteria, just like in this example:
When a task is moved to Done, clear its due date field:
You may also create rules, which will run at regular time intervals, instead of executing on basis of a specified event only, for example:
Archive red tasks in the Done column, that have not been updated for 7 days.
Notify me of high priority tasks becoming due in 2 days.
Notify Daria when there are tasks that have been worked on (timed) for more than 8 hours.
Also, it is possible to create automation rule trigger buttons, on clicking which, a specified set of changes will be applied, either to one task (when using task buttons or menu options) or to all tasks (when using board buttons).
Create a button on the board, clicking which will check for overdue tasks in Production column, and send a notification about them to set users.
Buttons like this are added to a board's side panel, under Process Automation.
Create an in-task button, clicking which will send the task to Production column, and change multiple details of the task for you - assignment, due date, type, custom field selection, in this example.
Add an extra task menu option, letting you move the task straight to Completed.
For detailed information on the syntax needed for own automation rules creation, be sure to review this page.
Should you get stuck or come across any issues, feel free to contact us for help.
Please note, Process Automation is only available to the Enterprise plan subscribers.
You can change your service plan any time from Account Administration - Plan & Billing details.
Kanban Tool is a visual management application based on Kanban that helps companies visualize workflow, track project progress and analyze and significantly improve business processes. Kanban Tool provides powerful online Kanban board, insightful Kanban analytics and seamless time tracking. Our Kanban software works perfectly in software development and is designed for Scrum and Kanban teams that want to visualize work on Kanban board.