What is Jira
A brief overview of Jira
Jira is a family of products built to help all types of teams manage their work. Jira offers several products and deployment options that are purpose-built for Software, IT, Business, Ops teams, and more. Read on to see which is right for you.
Jira Software is part of a family of products designed to help teams of all types manage work. Originally, Jira was designed as a bug and issue tracker. But today, Jira has evolved into a powerful work management tool for all kinds of use cases, from requirements and test case management to agile software development. In this guide, you'll learn which features and functionalities of Jira can help your team with your unique needs.
Jira products overview
Plan, track and release world-class software.
Give your customers an easy way to ask for help and your agents a faster way to deliver it.
Manage any business project including marketing campaigns, HR onboarding, approvals and legal document reviews.
Jira for requirements & test case management
An increasing number of teams today are developing more iteratively, and Jira Software is the central hub for the coding, collaboration, and release stages. For test management, Jira integrates with a variety of add-ons so the QA’s testing slides seamlessly into the software development cycle. Teams can test effectively and iteratively. QA teams Use Jira issues, customized screens, fields, and workflows to manage manual and automated tests.
Jira for agile teams
For teams who practice agile methodologies, Jira Software provides scrum and kanban boards out-of-the box. Boards are a task management hubs, where tasks are mapped to customizable workflows. Boards provide transparency across team work and visibility into the status of every work item. Time tracking capabilities, and real-time performance reports (burn-up/down charts, sprint reports, velocity charts) enable teams to closely monitor their productivity over time. Find your agile boards in Jira Software Cloud classic projects.
- Issue tracking
- Kanban boards
- Customizable workflows
- Project- level permissions
- Estimation & work logging
- Project backlogs
- Progress reports
- Email notifications
- Scrum boards
Jira for project management teams
Jira Software Cloud can be configured to fit any type of project. Teams can start with a project template or create their own custom workflow. Jira issues, also known as tasks, tracks each piece of work that needs to pass through the workflow steps to completion. Customizable permissions enable admins to determine who can see and perform which actions. With all project information in place, reports can be generated to track progress, productivity, and ensure nothing slips.
- Issue / Task management
- Project backlogs
- Project customization
- Issue customization
- Report & Analytics
- Granular user permissions
- Integrated mobile app
- Workflow customization
Jira for software development teams
Jira Software Cloud provides planning and roadmap tools so teams can manage stakeholders, budgets, and feature requirements from day one. Jira integrates with a variety of CI/CD tools to facilitate transparency throughout the software development life cycle. When it’s ready to deploy, live production code status information is surfaced in the Jira issue. Integrated feature flagging tools allow teams to roll out new features gradually and safely.
Jira for product management teams
In Jira Software Cloud’s next gen template, teams can build a roadmap that’s associated with each project. The roadmap enables teams to sketch out the longer term view of their work as well as track and share progress for their roadmap. Add more detail to your roadmaps, surfacing dependencies and forecasts for when you might complete your work. Create a view highlighting ‘live’ roadmaps from multiple teams by embedding the Jira Software roadmap into Confluence.
Jira for task management
Create tasks for yourself and members of your team to work on, complete with its details, due dates, and reminders. Utilize subtasks to breakdown larger items of work. Allow others to watch the task to track its progress and be notified when it’s completed. Create sub-tasks within the parent task to break down the unit of work into digestible pieces for various members of the team. View all tasks on the board to easily visualize each’s status.
Jira for bug tracking
Bugs are just a name for to-do's stemming from problems within the software a team is building. It is important for teams to view all the tasks and bugs in the backlog so they can prioritize big picture goals. Jira’s powerful workflow engine ensures that bugs are automatically assigned and prioritized once they are captured. Teams can then track a bug through to completion.
Scrum boards enable teams to manage their sprints and backlog.
A kanban board allows teams to visualize the flow of work and limit work in progress.
A backlog contains outstanding issues for a team to work on.
Epics, User Stories, Issues
An epic represents a large body of work, which may require several sprints to complete. Multiple user stories comprise an epic. A Jira issue represents a single piece of work in a project.
Time tracking allows teams to record the amount of time they spend working on issues.
Teams can create a custom workflow to drive the progression of issues on a scrum or kanban board.
Roadmaps create a visual representation of all the epics a team is working on, so teams can plan large pieces of work in advance.
Advanced search uses Jira Query Language (JQL) to search for specific criteria in issues that can’t be done in quick or basic searches.
Utilize permissions to grant team members different levels of access and to lock down sensitive information.
A Jira 'issue' refers to a single work item of any type or size that is tracked from creation to completion. For example, an issue could be a feature being developed by a software team, a to-do item for a marketing team, or a contract that needs to be written by a legal team.
Tip: Other commonly used terms for issues are 'requests', 'tickets' or 'tasks'. We recommend using 'issues' to help your team stay on the same page when working across the Jira product family.
A project is, quite simply, a collection of issues that are held in common by purpose or context. Issues grouped into projects can be configured in a variety of ways, ranging from visibility restrictions to available workflows.
Jira Software projects are flexible working spaces that allow you to group like issues by team, business unit, product, or stream of work. Projects don't need to be tied to the same delivery date. For example, if you group your issues by team, you could have a marketing project, a development project, and a legal project, all of which would track ongoing work of those particular teams. Every issue would be represented by an issue keys (specific to a project) and an issue number, i.e. MKT-13, DEV-4, LEG-1.
Workflows represent the sequential path an issues takes from creation to completion. A basic workflow might look something like this:
In this case, Open, Done, and the labels in between represent the status an issue can take, while the arrows represent potential transitions from one status to another. Workflows can be simple or complex, with conditions, triggers, validators and post functions. We'll dive deeper into these advanced configurations later in this guide. For now, it is recommended for novice Jira Software admins to keep their workflows as simple as possible, until business needs determine the requirements for complex workflow configurations.
Agile is not a Jira Software-specific term. It's a work philosophy that originated in the software development field and has since expanded to a variety of other industries. While we won't belabor the definition here (there are great resources for that!), agile emphasizes an iterative approach to work informed by customer feedback where delivery occurs incrementally and continuously. The ideal agile team can move quickly and adapt to changing requirements without missing much of a beat.
So why are we bringing up agile here? Because Jira Software has major feature sets designed particularly for agile, including scrum or kanban. So, when you see terms like boards, estimation, or cards, it's time to start thinking how agile fits into your work practice.
It's important to note that because agile is a philosophy and a culture of work, simply using Jira Software won't make your team truly agile. That said, it is a tool built to help your team get there.