Kanban, Scrum, or Both: Unraveling the Mystery of Agile Framework Selection

by Anand Suresh

Agile has two main strategies to support teams in successfully collaborating on challenging projects. Both the Scrum and Kanban frameworks use an iterative method for product delivery. This guide will examine these variations and assist you in selecting the method that best suits your project management requirements. 


Agile is a project management methodology that focuses on iterative development, allowing for changes and adjustments to be made as the project progresses. Agile methodology was introduced in the early 2000s as an alternative to the traditional waterfall approach. Since then, it has become increasingly popular, particularly in the software development industry. The agile methodology employs several techniques, including Scrum, Kanban, and extreme programming.

These techniques help to promote communication and collaboration between team members and encourage a culture of continuous improvement. In recent years, Agile has also been adopted by businesses in other industries, such as marketing and product development. As Agile continues to gain popularity, its impact will likely continue to grow.

Kanban or Scrum: FrameworkWhat is Kanban Methodology?

Kanban is a methodology that can be used to improve the way work is done. It is based on continuous improvement and helps optimize workflow flow by visualizing the process and identifying bottlenecks. Kanban can be used in various settings, but it is particularly well-suited to agile software development. In Kanban, work is represented by cards, and each card represents a piece of work that needs to be done. The cards are placed on a Kanban board, divided into columns. The columns represent the different stages of the work process, from “To Do” to “Done.” The cards are moved from one column to the next as work is completed. This visualization of the work process helps to identify bottlenecks and optimize the flow of work.

Kanban also includes several other practices, such as limiting the amount of work in progress and using feedback loops to improve the process continuously. When used correctly, Kanban can be an extremely effective way to improve the efficiency of any organization.

What Is Scrum Methodology?

Scrum is an agile software development methodology that emphasizes iterative, incremental work cycles. The critical characteristic of Scrum is its use of short, time-boxed iterations, called “sprints,” typically two weeks in length. During each sprint, the team works to complete a particular goal or deliverable. At the end of the sprint, the team holds a retrospective meeting to discuss what went well and what could be improved. The team then uses this feedback to plan for the next sprint.

Scrum is a popular choice for software development teams because it helps to ensure that work is completed on time and that goals are met.

Kanban or ScrumDifferences

In the world of agile software development, there are two main approaches: Scrum and Kanban. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, and the best approach for a project depends on various factors. Let’s take a closer look at the key differences between these two popular approaches.


There are three defined roles in Scrum: the product owner, the Scrum Master, and the development team. The product owner is responsible for representing the stakeholders’ interests and ensuring that the development team delivers value. The Scrum Master is responsible for facilitating the Scrum process and protecting the development team from external interference. The development team is responsible for providing a working increment of software at the end of each sprint.

In Kanban, there are no defined roles. Instead, everyone on the team works collaboratively to deliver value. The focus is on continual improvement rather than on following a rigid process. As a result, Kanban teams tend to be more flexible and responsive to change than Scrum teams.


In Scrum, Cadence refers to the regularity and predictability of when work is delivered. This could be daily, weekly, or monthly. The Cadence is determined by the team and is often based on the business need. For example, a team working on a website might need to release new features weekly to keep up with customer demand. On the other hand, a team working on an enterprise application might only need to release new features once a month.

Kanban doesn’t have the concept of Cadence because it’s more flexible and agile. Work is pulled by the team as soon as it’s ready, so there’s no set Cadence. This could result in more frequent releases and less predictability when work is delivered. In some cases, this could lead to frustration from stakeholders waiting for new features.


In Scrum, changes are only allowed during sprint planning and retrospective meetings. This is because Scrum teams want to avoid scope creep and keep the focus on delivering value within the sprint.

Kanban teams are more flexible when it comes to changes. Since they don’t have hard sprints, they can make changes as needed. This could lead to scope creep, but it also means that the team is more responsive to changes in customer demand.

Work boards

In Scrum, work items are typically represented by stories, and the board is divided into sprints.

In Kanban, work items are typically represented by cards, and the board is divided into columns that correspond to the different stages of work.

Performance metrics

In Scrum, teams typically track the number of story points completed per sprint. This metric predicts how much work can be done in future sprints. In Kanban, teams typically track the number of items completed per day or week. This metric is used to identify bottlenecks in the process and to improve flow.


At first glance, Kanban and Scrum may appear to be very different frameworks for managing software development projects. However, there are several similarities between these two popular approaches. Kanban and Scrum are based on the Agile principles of collaboration, continuous improvement, and customer satisfaction. In addition, both agile frameworks seek to improve workflow by identifying and removing bottlenecks. Furthermore, Kanban and Scrum emphasize regular feedback from stakeholders to make necessary adjustments. Finally, both frameworks are designed to be flexible and adaptable to the specific needs of each team. While there are some significant differences between Kanban and Scrum, these two approaches share many standard features.

What would be the best reason to choose Kanban over Scrum?

There are a few situations where it might make more sense to use Kanban over Scrum:

  1. Kanban may be better if you need a more flexible and agile approach.
  2. Kanban may be a good fit if your team is already familiar with Agile principles and needs a simple tool to help them visualize their work fit.
  3. If you have a small team that doesn’t need the overhead of Scrum’s sprints and ceremonies, then Kanban could be a more straightforward solution.

What would be the best reason to choose Scrum over Kanban?

There are also a few situations where it might make more sense to use Scrum over Kanban:

  1. If you need a more predictable and structured approach, Scrum may be the better option.
  2. If your team is unfamiliar with Agile principles and needs the guidance of Scrum’s sprints and ceremonies, Scrum may be a better fit.
  3. If you have a large team that needs to coordinate their work across multiple sprints, then Scrum could be a more scalable solution.

Can you use both Scrum and Kanban?

Combining Kanban and Scrum is a popular agile methodology known as Scrumban. Scrumban uses the best aspects of Kanban and Scrum to create a more efficient workflow. The Kanban methodology focuses on visualizing work, setting priorities, and limiting work progress. This helps to ensure that tasks are completed efficiently and that the most critical studies are always given priority. On the other hand, the Scrum methodology focuses on creating sprints or time-limited periods in which specific tasks must be completed. Combining these two approaches can help to create a more efficient and effective workflow. When used correctly, Scrumban can help the team complete tasks more quickly and effectively while prioritizing the most critical tasks.


Anand is a Senior Technical Project Manager at Practical Logix. Having worked on many enterprise software systems as a lead developer and Project Manager, Anand is responsible for implementing and managing processes for development, QA, DevOps, Release Management and Support and Maintenance. He possesses a wealth of experience from managing projects with 60+ team members, including designers, strategists and engineers. Anand holds a Master of Science degree in Computer Science. He is also a Certified Solutions Architect with AWS.

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