Work in Progress (WIP) is the total work that has been started but not completed. This includes all work, defects, tasks, stories, etc.

What is the intended behavior?

Focus the team on finishing work and delivering it rather than switching between tasks but not finishing them.

How to improve it

  • The team should focus on finishing items closest to being ready for production.
    • Prioritize code review over starting new work
    • Prioritize pairing to solve a problem over starting new work
  • Set and do not exceed WIP limits for the team.
    • Total WIP should not exceed team size.
  • Keep the Kanban board visible at all times to monitor WIP

How to game it

  • Update incomplete work to “done” before it is delivered to production.
  • Create stories for each step of development instead of for value to be delivered.
  • Do not update work to “in progress” when working on it.
Last modified December 15, 2023: Reorganize (7579932)