Skip to main content

Jira is a popular project management software solution and issue tracking tool developed by Atlassian. It provides a platform for teams to plan, track, and manage their work through customizable workflows.

Jira is widely used by software development teams but can be adapted for various types of projects and industries.

What is Jira?

Jira is a prominent project management and issue tracking tool that has been on the market since 2002.

Jira software is well-known for supporting agile methodologies, and built an early reputation for its wide adoption within the software development industry. However, it's only one of many choices for online agile tools available today.

Screenshot of a Jira ticket within the project management software
This is a screenshot of a Jira ticket might be used for issue tracking.

Key Features of Jira

  1. Issue tracking: Jira allows teams to create and track issues, which can represent tasks, bugs, new features, or any other unit of work.
  2. Scrum and kanban boards: These visual boards support agile methodologies and help agile teams manage their work, track progress, and prioritize tasks.
  3. Dashboards and reporting: Jira provides customizable dashboards that allow teams to create and share visualizations of their project's progress. Various reporting features help teams analyze their performance and identify areas for improvement.
  4. Integration: Jira integrates with a wide range of tools and services, including version control systems, continuous integration tools, and third-party apps from the Atlassian Marketplace.
  5. User permissions: Jira allows administrators to set fine-grained permissions, controlling who can access, modify, or comment on specific issues.
  6. Plugins and extensions: Jira's flexibility is enhanced by a vast ecosystem of plugins and extensions that can be used to extend its functionality according to specific project requirements.
  7. Cloud and self-hosted options: Jira is available both as a cloud-based service and as a self-hosted solution. However, Atlassian is ending support for on-premise servers on February 15, 2024 and is strongly urging existing customers to migrate to the cloud.

What Is Jira Used For?

Jira can be used for a variety of purposes within project management, software development, and business workflows.

Project Management

Jira is a robust project management tool, enabling teams to meticulously plan and schedule tasks, allocate resources, and manage project timelines. It acts as a central hub for collaborative efforts, facilitating effective communication and coordination among team members.

Issue Tracking

Jira allows IT and software development teams to track and manage tasks, bugs, and feature requests. It offers a structured system for creating detailed records, assigning priorities, and monitoring the status of each issue throughout its lifecycle. This feature is pivotal in maintaining a comprehensive overview of project progress.

While Jira may enjoy wide name recognition, there are several other excellent selections to consider when looking for the best bug tracking tools.

Customizable Workflows

Teams can tailor fields, workflows, and screens to align with unique project requirements. This adaptability extends beyond software development, allowing Jira to cater to various industries and diverse team structures.

Agile Boards

Jira supports agile methodologies through Scrum and Kanban boards. Scrum boards facilitate iterative and incremental development, while Kanban boards provide a visual representation of work and optimize flow. This flexibility allows teams to adapt to changing requirements and prioritize tasks effectively.

Dashboards

The platform empowers users to create personalized dashboards that offer a comprehensive visual overview of project information. With customizable gadgets displaying charts, statistics, and progress summaries, Jira's dashboards become essential tools for quick project assessment and informed decision-making.

Reporting

Teams can generate diverse reports, including burndown charts and velocity reports, to gain valuable insights into team performance. This analytical functionality helps identify trends, potential bottlenecks, and areas for improvement.

Software Version Control

Jira integrates with version control systems, facilitating the incorporation of code changes into projects. Additionally, it connects with continuous integration tools, automating testing and deployment processes. The extensive integration options extend further through the Atlassian Marketplace's third-party apps.

Other tools similar to Jira include agile project management tools such as:

What Are The Benefits of Jira?

Some of the main benefits to using Jira include:

It's A Comprehensive Platform For Project Management

Jira is mainly a comprehensive project management tool, empowering teams to meticulously plan, schedule, and manage tasks. Its features facilitate efficient resource allocation and effective communication, serving as a central hub for collaborative efforts among team members.

It Tracks Issues With Precision

Jira excels in precise issue tracking, allowing teams to manage tasks, bugs, and feature requests with meticulous detail. This structured system enables the creation of detailed records, assignment of priorities, and monitoring of issue status throughout its lifecycle, ensuring a comprehensive overview of project progress.

It Allows for Adapatible and Customizable Workflows

Teams can design and tailor workflows to match specific project processes, ensuring seamless progress from initiation to completion. This adaptability promotes efficient task management based on the unique requirements of each project.

It Support Agile Methodologies

Jira supports agile methodologies through dedicated Scrum and Kanban boards. Scrum boards facilitate iterative and incremental development, while Kanban boards provide a visual representation of work and optimize workflow. This flexibility enables teams to adapt to changing requirements and prioritize tasks effectively.

It Offers Comprehensive Dashboards

Jira's dashboards empower users to create insightful, personalized views of project information. Customizable gadgets displaying charts, statistics, and progress summaries offer an essential visual overview for quick project assessment and informed decision-making.

It Has Robust Reporting Capabilities

Beyond standard project tracking, Jira offers robust reporting capabilities. Teams can generate diverse reports, including burndown charts and velocity reports, providing valuable insights into team performance. This analytical functionality aids in identifying trends, potential bottlenecks, and areas for improvement.

It Offers Tailored Flexibility

Teams can tailor fields, workflows, and screens to align with unique project requirements. This adaptability extends beyond software development, allowing Jira to cater to various industries and diverse team structures.

It Acts As A Centralized Collaboration Hub

Functioning as a centralized collaboration platform, Jira fosters teamwork by providing shared workspaces and real-time updates. It enhances transparency by consolidating all project-related information in one location, making collaboration more effective and ensuring that everyone is on the same page.

What Teams Use Jira?

Jira can be used by various types of teams across different industries.

  1. Software Development Teams: Jira is widely used in the software development industry for project management, issue tracking, and agile development.
  2. IT Teams: IT teams can use Jira to manage service desk tasks, track incidents, and coordinate their helpdesk workflows efficiently.
  3. Marketing Teams: Jira's flexibility allows marketing teams to handle work management, plan and track campaigns, manage content creation, and collaborate on projects.
  4. Project Management Teams: Teams involved in project management across different domains can utilize Jira for planning, tracking progress, and ensuring timely delivery.
  5. Product Management Teams: Jira can assist product managers in prioritizing features, tracking development progress, and managing product roadmaps.
  6. Customer Support Teams: Jira's issue tracking capabilities make it useful for customer support teams to log and manage customer-reported issues or service requests.
  7. HR Teams: HR teams can use Jira for managing recruitment processes, tracking employee onboarding, and handling internal projects.
  8. Manufacturing and Engineering Teams: Teams involved in manufacturing or engineering projects can benefit from Jira's project management features and customizable workflows.
  9. Educational Institutions: Jira can be adapted for educational purposes, helping teams within academic institutions manage projects, assignments, and collaborative research.
  10. Finance and Operations Teams: Jira's project tracking and collaboration features can be valuable for finance and operations teams to coordinate tasks and projects.
By Ben Aston

I’m Ben Aston, a digital project manager and founder of thedpm.com. I've been in the industry for more than 20 years working in the UK at London’s top digital agencies including Dare, Wunderman, Lowe and DDB. I’ve delivered everything from film to CMS', games to advertising and eCRM to eCommerce sites. I’ve been fortunate enough to work across a wide range of great clients; automotive brands including Land Rover, Volkswagen and Honda; Utility brands including BT, British Gas and Exxon, FMCG brands such as Unilever, and consumer electronics brands including Sony. I'm a Certified Scrum Master, PRINCE2 Practitioner and productivity nut!