Kanban Markers

Posted in Operations and Supply Chain Terms, Total Reads: 932

Definition: Kanban Markers

Kanban is a full proof type of inventory control system. Kanban is a Japanese term meaning signboard or graphics. Kanban system is based upon the series of colored cards. Kanban colored cards denote the quantity, type of part and the manufacturer. These cards are placed in the bin with each group of manufactured items for identifying the process for next activity of production or distribution for an identifier.

Kanban is a method for managing work with just-in-time delivery while not overloading the team members. In this process, from the start of the job to its delivery to the customer, each activity is displayed for participants to see and developed the job according to the sequence.

Kanban is divided into two parts:

1) A visual process management system that decides what to produce, when to produce and how much to produce with just-in-time concept.

2) An approach to identifying, rectification and implementation for improvement in the organization.


Principles of Kanban:

1. Start with what you do now:

The Kanban method does not tells about the specific set of roles or process steps. It starts with the roles and processes the company has and stimulates continuous, incremental and evolutionary changes to your system in order to maximize the productivity.

2. Agree to pursue incremental, evolutionary change:

The organization must be agreed to stimulate continuous, incremental and evolutionary changes to make system improved and more effective. Sometimes this system shows much improved results but it always has higher rate of risk of failure.

3. Respect the current process, roles, responsibilities & titles:

Company respects the current process, roles and responsibilities and only the fear of failure can be eliminated in this principle.

4. Leadership at all levels:

Acts of leadership at all levels in the organization should be encouraged.


Core Practices of Kanban:


1) Kanban implementation on personal work and time management. It has three self-descriptive states:

To Do

In Progress






• To do

o To store and organize things anyone wants to work on

• In progress

o With limit to keep you from doing too many things at the same time

• Done

o for reference and to track your performance


2) Kanban Time driven version of basic workflow:



In Progress











• To do

• Scheduled with three categories:

• Soon - things to do in near future

• Tomorrow - limited number of things scheduled for tomorrow

• Today - things to do today with limit of 5 cards to keep you focused and organized

• In progress with limit to keep you from doing too many things at the same time

• Done for reference and to track your performance


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