Using Kanban Boards to Visualize Demand & Capacity


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Denise is a parts department employee at a car dealership. Her duties include receiving new parts from vendors, checking them in, and assigning them to their associated work orders. A Kanban board could be used to make sure Denise always has parts to process but never so many parts in her queue that the mechanics must wait on them. What lean principle does the Kanban board help to achieve in this scenario?

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1. Denise processes incoming auto parts before assigning them to their work-ordered jobs. If Denise is currently checking in an average of 62 parts per shift, but the Kanban board indicates she could be checking in 74 parts per shift, what is happening?

2. Jim works for a company that provides customers with in-home computer repair. His boss notices that he is currently completing a lower number of jobs per day on average than his counterparts. In this case, the Kanban board can help Jim's manager:

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About This Quiz & Worksheet

With this quiz/worksheet combo, you can determine what you know about the use of Kanban Boards for visualizing demand. Questions cover topics like the use of a Kanban Board to control inventory flow and measure capacity and demand.

Quiz & Worksheet Goals

These areas are covered on the quiz/worksheet:

  • Way a Kanban Board can help an employee manager address an employee's low productivity
  • Use of a Kanban Board to visualize a scenario in which demand increases but capacity stays the same
  • How a Kanban Board controls work from the 'to do' queue

Skills Practiced

  • Information recall - access the knowledge you've gained regarding the way Kanban Boards can be used to measure capacity against demand
  • Making connections - use your understanding of a Kanban Board and how it can connect to business work orders and inventory
  • Knowledge application - use your knowledge to answer questions about how a Kanban Board can help a manager oversee the productivity of employees and how Kanban Boards can control work from the 'to do' queue to the 'doing it now' queue

Additional Learning

For more on this organization tool, view the accompanying lesson titled Using Kanban Boards to Visualize Demand & Capacity. Here are some of the main points you'll go over:

  • What makes a Kanban Board lean
  • Questions answered by Kanban Boards
  • Definitions for capacity and demand