Introducing Workflow Layers

July 17, 2018

When you have multiple disciplines and/or teams working on your project, they each may have their own unique workflow. For example, when developing a software product, you have a design, product, QA and marketing team involved in the process. The design process will have steps such as Wireframing, Wireframe Review, Prototyping, Designing, Final Design and so forth. The product team may have steps such as Estimating, In development, Code review, Deployed to staging, et cetera. Going even a step further, team members may each prefer their own workflow within those processes, especially when their work is very specialized.

This can quickly become difficult to manage. Through out the project, work hand-off points will need to be managed and somehow each discipline will need to set up their own workflow without needing to go to twenty different places to find the information they need to keep the project moving forward.

Introducing workflow layers make this easy as pie.

To get started, we will first create a Topic for our project: Building a Time machine, cloning a cat, developing our mobile app, etc.

To set up a workflow, we will then use the Kanban view.

 

Each lane in the Kanban view represents a Label: In development, Ready for review, etc - to give a status to the work in progress. We will use Cards for tasks with work descriptions and specifications. When you drop a Card in a Lane, the label is automatically applied to the Card. This label is universal - meaning the Card label is active across all views and topics - it travels with the Card wherever it goes. Each Card can have many labels.

So, we now have our first workflow set up. That was easy!

 

But since we have multiple teams involved with different workflows, this workflow doesn't work for everyone.

Other team members can now simply create a second workflow by creating a second Label order that lets you choose the labels and lanes for your workflow. So you are still in the same Topic, with all of the same Cards, and you can select Label order 1 or Label order 2, to view your Cards in your preferred workflow. You can create as many label orders as you need.

 

The beauty is that you can have overlap between the workflows. Because labels are universal, a lane in Label order 1 can have the same Label as a lane in Label order 2. So the design team's last step in the workflow could be Final Design, which could be the first Lane in the product team's workflow. And perhaps the 'Ready for Deployment' lane in the product team's workflow is the first step in the marketing workflow to start working on promotion.

 

Now lets take it even a step further. Maybe you have multiple product teams, each responsible for the development of a certain feature set of the product.

We can create Subtopics in our project Topic to organize the product features in smaller projects: Feature set 1, Feature set 2, etc. Each product team might need to follow the same workflow - so you want to use the Label order 1 for each team. Since Labels orders are also universal, with a simple click you can apply that workflow to any Topic/Subtopic. So all we need to do is select the Kanban view as our view for the Subtopics, select the Label order we want - and your workflow is set up!

To summarize, here's how you create a workflow layer on TipHive:

  • Create Topics for your Projects

  • SubTopics for mini projects or task groups

  • Cards for tasks with descriptions and specifications

  • Labels for Card status

  • Lanes and Label orders for Workflow

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     


 

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