Rally adds Kanban tool to agile offerings

Application lifecycle management software vendor Rally Software is announcing Wednesday that is has acquired AgileZen, which offers a visual project collaboration tool leveraging the “Lean” concept of Kanban.


The AgileZen collaboration tool supports provides a Web-based Kanban board, which exposes bottlenecks, queues, and waste in a process. Kanban can be used in business processes, such as when an an IT operations team works on the most pressing issues each day or when an agile development team is delivering individual features directly into production.


Kanban, said Ryan Martens, Rally CTO and co-founder, is “an agile project management [practice] that tends to be a little simpler than Scrum or other agile methods.” Kanban involves a tool, a method, and technologies but has fewer rules and practices associated with it, Martens said.


The Lean concept, meanwhile, was derived from a manufacturing methodology focused on delivering value and eliminating waste, said Martens.


While Rally will continue offering AgileZen as a low-cost project collaboration tool for Kanban, Rally also will begin migrating AgileZen Kanban functionality into its Rally ALM platform, both in hosted and behind-the-firewall versions.


“We’re going to to use their Kanban board in Rally,” Martens said.


Rally customers can contribute to Kanban discussions and track release commitments at the Agile Commons Website.


Launched in July 2009, AgileZen has more than 9,000 users, Rally said. Rally closed its AgileZen acquisition March 31, Martens said. He would not disclose the sale price.

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