Visualizing CRM Opportunities with Kanban

First of all – let’s preface this post by preventing the heart failure of Kanban purists. We respect the Kanban development method. It came from Japan in the 1940s and is a scheduling system for lean production.

We respect it, which is why we will not pretend to be introducing some kind of Kanban sales process to Zurmo simply by adding Kanban-board-like visuals. We get it. Kanban is really cool and it is much more in depth than what we’re doing here, okay?

So… having hopefully halted any rising blood pressure, let us introduce the Kanban View for Opportunities. It’s pretty simple (remember we’re not professing otherwise). We’ve taken the idea of a Kanban board and applied it to stages in a sales cycle. The result is a nice big-picture look at Opportunities.

Why did we do this? Jason likes the visualization of objects in Pivotal Tracker, an agile project management tool we use for everything from product design to development. The status of a feature moves from “Icebox” to “Backlog” to “Current”:


This has worked so well for us with Pivotal Tracker, why not apply the same visual representation of objects and their respective phases to sales?

Well, we have. And here’s how it looks so far:


Rather than having to go into the edit view, an Opportunity sales stage can be changed simply by dragging the whole Opportunity to the next level.

It’s cool moving those numbers across the screen all the way from “Prospecting” to “Closed Won”. If something gets stuck for too long in the middle, it probably should get the ax. Kanban view keeps things moving right along.

Moving right along…

Leave a Comment

  • Robyn-Dale Y. Samuda

    Very interesting. This really should help users see the bigger picture and nudge them to get things going to complete the sales process and weed out the stallers.

    • Ray Stoeckicht

      Yes, totally agreed. This visual will show where the stallers stall and hopefully that triggers some action on the sales person’s part to push them through

  • crystalasia

    When is the upgrade to 1.6 from 1.5? Thanks!

    • Ray Stoeckicht

      Are you asking about the upgrade script for 1.5 to 1.6? If so, we will not have another upgrade package until 2.0 is out next week. For our commercial customers, they are automatically upgraded to the latest release:

  • Pingback: Zurmo 2.0 Released, Focuses on End User Experience, Gamification — Zurmo

  • Jason Hull

    Or just look at who’s had this for far longer.

  • Ella Mapple

    The aim of implementing Kanban system is to limit the team’s Work In Progress based on the agreed capacity and to increase overall throughput. Identifying issues that impair performance helps maintain a steady flow of work, thereby having an overall impact on quality. This shortens lead times, which, in turn, improves the system’s predictability.