Tracking impediments in Silver Catalyst

Posted on April 29th, 2009 in Silver Catalyst by siddharta || No Comment

Silver Catalyst can be used to track impediments in an intuitive way. Here is how:

Block Task

Every task on the taskboard has a “Block task” button. Clicking this button will open a dialog where you can enter the reason for the block.

Resolve Task

A blocked task will turn red so that it can be identified easily. The block button will be replaced with the “Resolve block” button. Click this when the block has been removed.

Blocked Task Stream

The event stream will notify the block, including the reason, plus when the block is removed.


We considered a couple of alternatives before settling on the above method of tracking blocks. Here are some methods didn’t work for us

  • Creating a separate state for Blocked:  Some tools provide a separate state for a task called Blocked. We felt that blocking a task was separate from its state. It should be possible to move a blocked task back to Not Started for example. This is not possible if Blocked is a separate state by itself.
  • Tracking impediments in a separate impediments list: This separates the impediment from the context of the task which is blocked. You can no longer gauge the iteration state by glancing at the taskboard, since a task marked In Progress could actually be blocked, and you would have to look elsewhere to find out.

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