Perhaps it’s just the nature of the kinds of people and the environment that I worked with/in, but the factory I used to be an operator at runs its floor on Kanban, except no one gives a shit about it and does the minimum of paperwork to keep their supervisors happy - which results in inaccuracies regarding what materials are where, what processes are ongoing, where mistakes are being made, where waste is accumulating, and so on. Rather than JIT manufacturing, we ended up doing a lot of AoT work - not inherently a bad thing, since this allowed us to meet our shipping deadlines, but it clashed with the Japanese manufacturing principles we were supposed to be obeying. Maybe Kanban works elsewhere.
All that said, Org-Mode is extremely powerful for this sort of thing, and I’m curious about alternative lean software development methodologies involving it. (Meta: Too ranty? Rambling? Not sure if this is an appropriate anecdote for this story, since manufacturing jobs don’t tend to involve emacs.)
That sounds like a pretty frustrating place to work. As I understand the original intent, Kanban shouldn’t be a second set of artifacts to track the real work… it should be how the real work gets done. Instead of a bunch of paperwork, it’s supposed to be the bins or racks that you move around to pull parts forward through the system.
If the “Kanban” part is all extra work to fill out paperwork, I’d expect it to get out of sync immediately.