How to produce personalized Jira workflows for managing program progress

Graphic: BalanceFormCreative/Adobe Stock

What is Jira?

When at first created as a bug tracker, more than the a long time Atlassian’s Jira has grow to be the 900 pound gorilla in the enterprise for handling computer software progress tasks.

There are a quantity of motives for that acceptance, from its pivotal purpose in Atlassian’s larger DevSecOps toolchain, to the intensive selection of third-occasion plugins available through Atlassian’s marketplace. One particular contributor to that attractiveness is the adaptable way Jira handles workflows, allowing groups to adapt the tool to the way value moves by their workstream, as opposed to modifying the way the group performs to align with the resource.

SEE: Employing package: Back-finish Developer (TechRepublic High quality)

What is a workflow?

In computer software development, a workflow defines the measures and statuses that duties transfer by as a portion of a team’s process. Out of the box, Jira supplies a three phase simple workflow (Determine A).

Determine A

Impression: Invoice Francis/TechRepublic.

You can picture if you had been establishing, say, a cellular buying application for a rapid services restaurant, and your team was tasked with adding the potential to settle for credit rating card payments, how this get the job done may move from remaining to proper.

Your merchandise operator would create up the demands, and when it was completely ready, put the undertaking to employ this function in To Do. A developer would then start out doing the job on this element marking it In Development. When she completes that function, the establish will get handed to a tester. If every little thing is effective as predicted, the tester moves the job to Done.

Throughout the procedure, Jira provides visibility to all the stakeholders who are not in the code, in effect enabling a job manager to continue to keep up with program and indirectly budget.

How software program gets produced

In truth, software program advancement is not a linear course of action. It has begins and stops and frequently has to repeat techniques of the approach until eventually the wished-for final result is reached. Even our straightforward out of the box workflow doesn’t basically just stream from remaining to right. Here’s a extra realistic representation of how responsibilities circulation across even the simplest of Jira workflows (Determine B):

Determine B

Picture: Monthly bill Francis/TechRepublic.

Key workflow components

In advance of we get far too deep into what is an great workflow and how to produce it making use of Jira, it’s significant to amount-established on the crucial elements of a workflow as defined by the tool.


This is the latest point out of a discrete perform merchandise. In our uncomplicated workflow, a activity is both To Do, In Progress or Finished.


These are the actions taken in the instrument to move a process from one particular condition to the following. In our illustration, the act of assigning a little something in the To Do point out to a developer may possibly transition that merchandise to In Development.


When a activity is ultimately finished it demands some linked resolution. The resolution is the disposition of the ultimate point out of a do the job merchandise. It’s regarded finalized or no for a longer time open. In our easy workflow, this is Accomplished, but in a a lot more superior workflow, you may well have other resolutions doable this sort of as Canceled or Revealed.


The the greater part of software program groups nowadays working with Jira for job administration are taking care of their initiatives utilizing some form of agile advancement. This indicates – in a team environment – the staff often performs from some sort of board, typically kanban or scrum. It should really come as no surprise then that workflows in Jira correlate to the columns on your boards.

Encouraged program enhancement job administration workflow

There are no ideal or improper answers for what your software package advancement venture management workflow need to be in Jira. Workflow can differ, even inside a team, for distinctive types of responsibilities.

For illustration, the workflow of a program bug is probable likely to be diverse than that of a new aspect. Even with slight naming variations to align with your firm, there are some very best practices you can appear to for steering.


A group is a person of the most vital and frequently missed, houses of generating a challenge management workflow in Jira. Within just Jira there are only a few categories, and you’ve currently witnessed them (Figure A).

In the most basic, out of the box workflow, categories and statuses are the exact same. Even so, as we create out and customise our workflow, all new statuses should map to a person of these three types. Why? For reporting and automation. Jira has a variety of canned reports, like the burn down, that only functionality if irrespective of how lots of states you insert to your customized workflow, everything maps back to 1 of these a few preordained categories (Determine C).

Determine C

Picture: Bill Francis/TechRepublic.


This is the tough listing of all the known get the job done your team has sorted in precedence order. All responsibilities that enter the workflow begin in the backlog.

To do

Once enough specifications are collected and a task is considered prepared, it gets moved into the To Do state in which it is obtainable for a developer to start out coding.

In progress

As the task is staying finished by the developer, it is thought of in progress. When the developer finishes the process to his gratification, he will shift it to Take a look at.

Take a look at

As a most effective observe, a developer doesn’t examination his personal perform. So goods marked as Check are going through analysis by yet another workforce member, ordinarily a good quality assurance engineer or the product or service owner, to make sure all the acceptance standards are met.


Duties that productively move the examination period get settled with a position of Finished.


If for any reason from the time a process enters the backlog, up right until the time it is marked done, the staff decides the perform won’t be completed it gets settled with a position of Canceled. This guarantees we can monitor that the process was viewed as, and in some instances started out, vs . just deleting it which would deliver an incomplete picture down the road.


At any position at the time the get the job done commences if a staff member just can’t continue on functioning on the item, it receives moved to Blocked. The intent right here is to draw notice to an merchandise that was dedicated to and now not being labored on so that the team can swarm around the concern and get it unstuck.

How to configure Jira

Producing the workflows in the Jira software alone is reasonably straight-forward and can be uncovered on the Atlassian web page.

Note that workflows get produced in different ways dependent on no matter if you have a “company-managed” venture or a “team-managed” task. If you aren’t certain which applies to you, glimpse at the decreased-remaining corner of your task sidebar. It must either say “you’re in a team managed project” or “you’re in a company-managed challenge.”

As soon as you are content with which style or venture you have, observe the appropriate one-way links on the Atlassian assistance web site. If you are not fairly guaranteed you want to deal with environment up your personal project management workflows for program growth, contemplate a plugin from Atlassian’s marketplace to do it for you.

4 tips for developing customized Jira workflows

When location up your workflows, retain in intellect these guidelines.

  • Really do not overthink it: The more simple the greater.
  • Team classes: It is usually negative practice not to have all your In Progress actions jointly as it impacts your means to evaluate cycle time.
  • Consult with all your stakeholders: The thought is to make workflows that fulfill everyone’s requires.
  • Lean into your transitions: This will permit you to build validation methods, automation guidelines and even control assignees.