In the summer of 2014, my team made the decision to transition from Scrum to Kanban. After practicing Scrum for 2+ years, we found that as the nature of our business was changing, our practices weren’t holding up. My company, Marchex, had decided to move my team away from working on our Free411 product, to a new Search related product. Directory Assistance was not a growing business, and it was clear that Mobile Search Advertising had huge growth potential.
In the world of new product development, we found our priorities and backlog were changing much more rapidly and our 2 week sprints plans were becoming problematic. In response, we started looking at Kanban as a paradigm that would help us accommodate a more fluid backlog. With guidance from another team that was successfully using Kanban, we embarked on our journey. We took a number of steps to help make the transition as smooth as possible, and by the end of the summer we had completed our transition to Kanban. I will discuss the factors that led us to make the transition, the steps we took to make the transition as smooth as possible, and a summary of best practices and lessons learned.