Define Backlog

You can create your product backlog from the Backlog which can comprise of  User Stories, Defects, Issues and any custom cards you created. You can then push the cards (user stories/defects/issues) from the backlog onto the Kanban Board to work on them.

You can add a card to the Backlog in the following views:

Defining a Product Backlog from Backlog View


To define a product backlog, go to Board > Cards > Backlog.



Click the Create button on the Auto-hide toolbar on the left. In the Add card pop-up, enter the card details.



Select the card type by clicking the card type color at the bottom of the pop-up. in the Card Type list, select Backlog in the Select Lane list and enter other attributes like you add card on the Kanban Board.
Cards added to the backlog are listed in the Backlog view, displaying field values like Priority, Current Owner, etc. You can push required card to the backlog by clicking the Add to Board button for the card. You can also:

  • View/Edit Cards by selecting a card and clicking the relevant icons on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can just double-click a card to view the details and make changes.
  • Delete/Bulk Delete cards permanently by selecting a card and clicking the Delete icon. To delete multiple cards, hold down the CTRL key and select multiple cards, and then click the Delete icon.
  • Filter cards by clicking the Filter icon and typing a text in the empty filter text boxes above any columns. For example, type any text in the text box above ‘Title’ to filter all cards containing the text in the title.
  • Sort cards based on any column name by clicking the column header.
  • Export Backlog to MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Export icon. See Exporting Work Items section to learn more.
  • Import Backlog from MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Import icon. See Importing Work Items section to learn more.
     

Defining a Backlog on the Backlog Board

SwiftKanban also provides a Backlog board right on the Kanban Board, which simulates a wall board. The Backlog Board is where you can view your backlog in the form of cards. You can view the card details upfront as on the board and decide which cards to push to the board. if you don't have a backlog created from where you can pull cards from, you can immediately create one.
To go to the Backlog Board, click the Backlog Board icon from your Kanban Board. The cards, if added as Backlog from the Backlog view or Card Type List View are shown here. Click the Add to Board icon to push the card to the board, which appears on mouse-over on the card. Card Menu is also available for the cards on mouse-over, enabling collaboration and card-related actions on the Backlog Board. If required, add cards to the Backlog Board by clicking the Add Card icon, which is similar to the Kanban board feature.



You will find other important board features on the Auto-hide toolbar to focus and prioritize cards- Board Filter, Legend, and Card Sizing views.


Organizing Backlog Based on Card Attributes

The Backlog Board can be organized more effectively based on card attributes to help you quickly locate and push cards with specific attribute value. Moreover, the category lanes function resets the attribute value of the card when you move it to another category lane.
To organize your backlog based on card attributes:

  1. In the Backlog Board view, click the Backlog Settings icon on the Auto-hide toolbar.
  2. In the Organize Backlog window, click Enable Organization.
  3. Select the ‘Organize Backlog based on one of the following Card attributes’ option.
  4. Select any card attribute, for example, Priority.
  5. Click Submit.

Considering the above example, the Backlog Board will have separate lanes for Priority values such as Critical, Medium, and so on. The cards matching the Priority value are placed in the applicable category lane. If there are no cards moved to a lane, it will be collapsed. As in Lanes, if you move a card of ‘Medium’ priority to the ‘Critical’ priority lane, the priority of that card is set to ‘Critical’.
If required, you can change the category by selecting the required card attribute in the Organize Backlog window.

Organizing Backlog Based on Custom Categories

The Backlog Board also provides flexibility to organize the board by creating your own backlog category lanes. As the prioritization can keep changing based on the dynamic business need, the categorization may need to change.

To organize your backlog based on custom categories:

  1. In the Backlog Board view, click the Backlog Settings icon on the Auto-hide toolbar.
  2. In the Organize Backlog window, click the Enable Organization button. If you have organized the backlog based on card attribute, you will not see this button.
  3. Select the ‘‘Organize Backlog based on custom categories’ option.
  4. Click Submit. The Backlog lane now shows a Category Lane toolbar on the right corner. If you have changed from card attribute-based Backlog to Custom categories, you will see that all existing lanes show the toolbar.
  5. Click the Add Category lane icon on the toolbar, below which you want the new custom lane. Provide a name and description for the new custom lane.



Expand the lane and move the required cards from the Backlog lane to the new lane. Add a few more custom lanes, as and when required and organize the lanes by clicking the Move Up and Move Down icons. To delete a lane, click the Delete icon on the toolbar for that lane. The lane will be removed and if it has any cards, these will be moved to the ‘None’ lane created.

Adding a card using the Add Card icon, adds a card in the first lane by default. For Backlog organized on Custom Categories, right-click anywhere on a custom lane to add and associate the new card to that lane.

To push cards randomly, reset the Backlog Board to the default setting, by clicking the Disable Organization button in the Organize Backlog window.
To pick up cards in a left to right order, you can drag and drop the cards and resequence them within the lane. The cards resequenced, persists across sessions.

The following shortcut options are available on the Backlog Board:

  • Add Card: Right-click anywhere on the Backlog Board to add a card to the backlog. If you have organized the backlog based on card attributes or custom categories, the card will be added to the lane where you have right-clicked.
  • Archive Multiple cards at a time: Besides, archiving a single card using the Options menu, you can also archive all or selected cards. To archive all cards, right-click and select Archive All. If or category-based backlog, right-click on the required Lane header to archive all cards from that category. To archive selected cards, use CTRL + click to select cards to be archived and then right-click and select Archive Selected option on the shortcut menu. A yellow check mark indicates that the card is selected. To de-select a card, use CTRL + click again and the yellow mark disappears.
  • Move Multiple cards to the Kanban Board: Besides, moving a single card using the Add to Board icon on the card, you can also move all or selected cards to the Kanban Board. To move all cards, right-click and select Move All. If or category-based backlog, right-click on the required Lane header to move all cards from that category. To move selected cards, use CTRL + click to select cards to be moved and then right-click and select Move Selected option on the shortcut menu. A yellow check mark indicates that the card is selected. To de-select a card, use CTRL + click again and the yellow mark disappears.
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Defining Backlog from Card Type List View

Alternatively, you can go to the Board > Cards and select the card type to create cards. For example, SwiftKanban Demo » Cards » User Stories.


After defining the backlog, you can push them onto the board from the Backlog view or Kanban Board by clicking the Add to Board button for the required card.

Cards in SwiftKanban board come with permanent URLs that can help you to access your card quickly (login required, if session is not active) and save you a few navigation clicks. You can bookmark any card in your favorite browser to revisit directly. You can also share / enter such link in any external application, making cross-referencing easily possible.

To view, edit, and track the cards of a specific card type, you can go to the List Views of the card types and filter the cards based on Rank, Priority, Class of Service, Lane, Current Column, etc. If you want to filter based on a custom field you created for the card type, modify the List View for the field to appear in the List view. After which, you can filter the list based on the custom field. See the Modify List View of Card Type section in the Define Card Types help page.

Create User Stories

To create a user story, go to the selected Board > Cards » User Stories view, click the Create button. In the Details tab of the Create New view, enter the details such as, Title, Description of the user story, Priority, etc., and then click the Save icon on the Auto-hide toolbar.



Following is the description for a few of the values to be entered which can help to prioritize the story.

  • Prioritize a User Story: You can define the priority for a user story so that you can pick up the card on the board accordingly. You will find it easier to identify the high priority cards based on the color code.
  • Associate Class of Service based on Business Impact: You can associate a ‘Class of Service’ to categorize work items on business impact based on cost of delay, risk, and Service Level Agreements.  This category, again can be used to pull work items for prioritization.
  • Define the Story Size: Define the size in generic sense which can be used to create an work estimate for a user story, if required. The sizes are based on the T-shirt sizes format .
  • Rank a User Story: Enter a value to prioritize the user story.
  • Assign Owners to a User Story: To assign team members to work on the card, in the ‘Current Owner’ list, select one or more members. You can select multiple owners to a card by holding the SHIFT/CTRL keys in combination with the arrow keys/cursor. If you do not want to assign it to any member yet, select ‘Unassigned’ in the list.
    If you have created releases for your board, you can tag the issues to the release from the Release list. For detailed help on Release scoping, check out the Release Planning page.
  • Your enterprise may want to capture any specific information while adding a card on the Board or Detail view. You need to first add and configure the custom fields in the Card Type through Card Field Editor and then the team members can enter values in the cards. To add and configure custom fields, see Define Card Types.

After you save the details, additional sections – Comments and Attachments appear in the Details view, and also additional tabs i.e. To-Do, Linked Cards, and Activity Log appear. The Details view displays the Wait Time, Work Time, and Blocked Time for the card as it progresses on the board. This is also available on flipping the card when in the board view.

 

You can create another user story by clicking the Create button while you are in the View or Edit mode of the existing user story. 
 
Go to the User Stories view to track all user stories in a single list view.



The User Stories List view displays the list of user stories created in the selected board. From this view, besides creating a user story/card, you can:
  • View/Edit User Stories by selecting a user story and clicking the relevant icons on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can just double-click a user story to view the details and make changes.
  • Delete/Bulk Delete User Stories permanently by selecting a user story and clicking the Delete icon. To delete multiple user stories, hold down the CTRL key and select multiple user stories, and then click the Delete icon.
  • Filter User Stories by typing a text in the empty filter text boxes above any columns, and selecting values in the filter lists. For example, type any text in the text box above ‘Title’ to filter all User Stories containing the text in the title. If you are not able to see the filter boxes, click the Filter icon on the toolbar.
  • Sort User Stories based on any column name by clicking the column label.
  • Export User Stories to MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Export icon. See Exporting Work Items section to learn more.
  • Import User Stories from other applications using MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Import icon. See Importing Work Items section to learn more.



Create Defects

To create a defect, from the selected Board » Cards » Defects view, click the Create icon on the Auto-hide toolbar. In the Details tab of the Create New view, enter the details such as, Title, Description of the defect, Priority, etc., and then click the Save icon on the Auto-hide toolbar.



Following is the description for a few of the values to be entered which can help to prioritize the defect.

Prioritize a Defect: You can define the priority for a defect so that you can pick up the card on the board accordingly. You will find it easier to identify the high priority cards based on the color code.

  • Associate Class of Service based on Business Impact: You can associate a ‘Class of Service’ to categorize work items on business impact based on cost of delay, risk, and Service Level Agreements.  This category, again can be used to pull work items for prioritization.
  • Define the Defect Size: Define the size in generic sense which can be used to create an work estimate for a working on a defect, if required. The sizes are based on the t-shirt sizes format .
  • Rank a Defect: Enter a value to prioritize a defect.
  • Assign Owners to a Defect: To assign team members to work on the card, in the ‘Current Owner’ list, select one or more members. You can select multiple owners to a card by holding the SHIFT/CTRL keys in combination with the arrow keys/cursor. If you do not want to assign it to any member yet, select ‘Unassigned’ in the list.
  • If you have created releases for your board, you can tag the defects to the release from the Release list. For detailed help on Release scoping, check out the Release Planning page.
  • Your enterprise may want to capture any specific information while adding a card on the Board or Detail view. You need to first add and configure the custom fields in the Card Type through Card Field Editor and then the team members can enter values in the cards. To add and configure custom fields, see Define Card Types.

After you save the details, additional sections – Comments and Attachments appear in the Details view, and also additional tabs i.e. Resolution Details, To-DoLinked Cards, and Activity Log appear. The Details view displays the Wait Time, Work Time, and Blocked Time for the card as it progresses on the board. This is also available on flipping the card when in the board view.

 

You can create another defect by clicking the Create button while you are in the View or Edit mode of the existing defect. 

 
The Defects view displays the list of defects logged on the board. From this view, besides creating a Defect card, you can:
  • View/Edit Defects by selecting a defect and clicking the respective icon on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can just double-click a defect to view the details and edit it.
  • Delete/Bulk Delete Defects permanently by selecting an defect and clicking the Delete icon. To delete multiple defects, hold down the CTRL key and select multiple defects, and then click the Delete icon.
  • Filter Defects by typing a text in the empty filter text boxes above any columns, and selecting values in the filter lists. For example, type any text in the text box above ‘Title’ to filter all defects containing the text in the title. If you are not able to see the filter boxes, click the Filter icon on the toolbar.
  • Sort Defects based on any column name by clicking the column label.
  • Export Defects to MS Excel/CSV File by clicking the Export icon. See Exporting Work Items section to learn more.
  • Import Defects from other applications using MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Import icon. See Importing Work Items section to learn more.
 
Create Issues

 To create an issue, from the selected Board » Cards » Issues view, click the Create button. In the Details tab of the Create New view, enter the details such as, Title, Description of the user story, Priority, etc., and then click the Save icon on the Auto-hide toolbar.


 

Following is the description for a few of the values to be entered which can help to Prioritize the issue.

  • Prioritize an Issue: You can define the priority for an issue so that you can pick up the card on the board accordingly. You will find it easier to identify the high priority cards based on the color code.
  • Associate Class of Service based on Business Impact: You can associate a ‘Class of Service’ to categorize work items on business impact based on cost of delay, risk, and Service Level Agreements.  This category, again can be used to pull work items for prioritization.
  • Define the Issue Size: Define the size in generic sense which can be used to create an work estimate for a working on an issue, if required. The sizes are based on the T-shirt sizes format .
  • Rank an Issue: Enter a value to prioritize an issue.
  • Assign Owner to an Issue: To assign team members to work on the card, in the ‘Current Owner’ list, select one or more members. You can select multiple owners to a card by holding the SHIFT/CTRL keys in combination with the arrow keys/cursor. If you do not want to assign it to any member yet, select ‘Unassigned’ in the list.
    If you have created releases for your board, you can tag the issues to the release from the Release list. For detailed help on Release scoping, check out the Release Planning page.
  • Your enterprise may want to capture any specific information while adding a card on the Board or Detail view. You need to first add and configure the custom fields in the Card Type through Card Field Editor and then the team members can enter values in the cards. To add and configure custom fields, see Define Card Types.

After you save the details, additional sections – Comments and Attachments appear in the Details view, and also additional tabs i.e. Resolution Details, To-DoLinked Cards, and Activity Log appear. The Details view displays the Wait Time, Work Time, and Blocked Time for the card as it progresses on the board. This is also available on flipping the card when in the board view.

 

You can create another issue by clicking the Create button while you are in the View or Edit mode of the existing issue. 
 
The Issues view shows the list of issues registered in the selected board. From this view, besides creating an issue card,  you can:
  • View/ Edit Issues by selecting an issue and clicking the relevant icons on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can just double-click any issue row to view the details and make changes.
  • Delete/Bulk Delete Issues permanently by selecting an issue and clicking the Delete icon. To delete multiple issues, hold down the CTRL key and select multiple issues, and then click the Delete icon.
  • Filter Issues by typing any text in the empty filter text boxes above any columns, and selecting values in the filter lists. For example, type any text in the text box above ‘Title’ to filter all issues containing the text in the title. If you are not able to see the filter boxes, click the Filter icon on the toolbar.
  • Sort Issues based on any column name by clicking the column label.
  • Export Issues to MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Export icon.  See Exporting Work Items section to learn more.
  • Import Issues from other applications using MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Import icon. See Importing Work Items section to learn more.

Create Custom Cards

SwiftKanban offers flexibility to add custom card types after which you can add custom cards as you would create Defects or User Stories. See Define Card Types.  Once you have activated the custom card type, you will see the card type menu link in the Board » Cards » <Custom Card Type>. For example, SwiftKanban Demo » Cards » Impediments, where Impediments is the Custom Card Type. You can then create Impediments cards as you would create cards for the default card types. The Auto-hide toolbar provides all features as for the default card types for viewing, editing, exporting, importing, etc.
 

Activity Log

The updates to the card details and card movements can be tracked in the Activity log. Click the Activity Log tab in the Detail Card view. The log is listed in the descending chronological order of Date and Time stamp. Log includes card updates such as Current Owner updated, Item moved from Develop#In Progress to Develop#Done, and events such as blocking of the card. It also shows who performed the card activity.


 

Consolidated 'All Cards' View


While you can view the pending items collectively in the ‘Backlog’ view, you can also view a consolidated list of work cards in all columns. Go to Board » Cards » All Cards. From the All Cards view, you can also add a card to the backlog or the Kanban Board.
Cards added to the backlog, Active cards on the board, archived/closed cards are listed, displaying field values like Priority, Current Owner, etc.
For cards on the board, you can view the Current Column where the card is and if you have  Lanes enabled, the Lane column displays for the card.



From the All Cards view, you can also:

  • View/Edit Cards by selecting a card and clicking the relevant icons on the toolbar. Alternatively, you can just double-click a card to view the details and make changes for active cards and backlog cards.
  • Delete/Bulk Delete cards permanently by selecting a card and clicking the Delete icon. To delete multiple cards, hold down the CTRL key and select multiple cards, and then click the Delete icon.
  • Filter cards by clicking the Filter icon and typing a text in the empty filter text boxes above any columns, and select values in the filter lists. For example, type any text in the text box above ‘Title’ to filter all cards containing the text in the title.
  • Sort cards based on any column name by clicking the column header.
  • Export cards to MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Export icon. See Exporting Work Items section to learn more.
  • Import cards from MS Excel/CSV file by clicking the Import icon. See Importing Work Items section to learn more.