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Custom Heirarchy for Plans

Hi all


Just wondering if there is a way to customise the heirarchy to add something in between Epic and Story - looking to put Feature in there, as this seems to work better with trying to map out our roadmaps, and having feature below epic am looking to drive a more business friendly release structure.  ie.  Feature is a breakdown of epic in to a release that makes sense to the business , ultimately being Theme > Initiative > Epic > Theme > Story.

Anyway, the first problem is that I can't seem to place Feature between Epic and Story here so straight away am having issues with building out the roadmap.

Any advice would be appreciated, even in regards to the 5 tiers we are looking to implement.





3 answers

1 accepted

3 votes
Answer accepted

@Richard Morgan -

Hi Richard:

Unfortunately, it is not possible.  Hierarchy functionality provided via AR only provide the ability to create higher levels (Epic going up) of roll up from the Jira based functional setup of EPIC >> Story >> Subtask.

Best, Joseph Chung Yin

Jira/JSM Functional Lead, Global Infrastructure Applications Team

Viasat Inc.

Thanks for the quick response Joseph - I did notice you could add additional issues to the Epic layer so have added 'feature' to that and renamed as per screenshot.  I am hoping that will at least allow us to still continue with Feature level.

Other option may be to do some workarounds with naming and additional levels, however there are a number of inflight teams that would potentially require rework so will attempt the above.



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@Richard Morgan -

As long as your users are aware that Feature is not the "EPIC", and thus many of the EPIC functionality will not be available for the Feature issue type.

Good luck.

Best, Joseph

0 votes
Dave Atlassian Team May 04, 2021

Hi @Richard Morgan,

Although it's not possible to create a level between epic and story it is possible to rename levels. So you could rename the Epic level to be Feature and create a level above Epic that is called Epic.

However, the limitation is that it is not possible to move the Epic issue to type to any other level. However, you can create an issue type called feature that can be used at the Feature level and a new issue type called EpicX (or something close to, but not exactly Epic) and then map that to your new epic level. You would then want to avoid using the default Epic type.

It's something of a workaround but might be one way to address the problem currently,



Thanks Dave, I did contemplate this however have concerns about a number of teams already using this heirarchy.

As I've replied above I am looking at potentially having Epic/Feature as same layer, as it allows me to add additional issue types (see screenshot).  Ultimately Epic and Feature are the same layer with a different lens,

I will attempt this if there is no major callouts

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@Dave -

I respectively disagreed with your workaround solution because the end user will loose many of the out of the box "EPIC" functionality. 

@Richard Morgan - The only other thing that you may want to try is to issue link of your story to the Feature/Theme.  However it will not be displayed in AR plan.  This way you can still view the relationship by viewing your story issues in your Jira project in the Linked Issue section. 

Best, Joseph

Dave Atlassian Team May 04, 2021

Hi @Joseph Chung Yin,

Yes - that's a fair point. The main disadvantage here is that you're not going to have Epics in the backlog sidebar on a board (I'm not sure what other functionality you'll lose?) but given that all the other hierarchy levels will also appear in your backlog it might be more consistent to have everything as a flat ranked list in the backlog view anyway?



@Dave -

In the backlog view, you will see all the hierarchy issues without any view to display the parent child relationship.

EPIC functionality and the usage are the fundamental guidelines in Jira right?  Other functionality one will loose such as -  built-in JQL functions are no longer applicable.  

Again, we are try to find workarounds to fit our needs.  Thus, it is up to the end users to decide.

Best, Joseph

Dave Atlassian Team May 04, 2021

Hi @Joseph Chung Yin,

you will see all the hierarchy issues without any view to display the parent child relationship.

Can you explain this a bit more as I'm not sure I understand? You can the parent link field to the issue screen so you'd still have visibility of the hierarchy.

I'm not familiar with the JQL functions specific to Epic but couldn't they just be replaced through querying the parentLink value?

I do agree with you though - I'm not suggesting this is necessarily the solution to take, just that it could be a viable option in this case.



@Dave -

I agreed and value the inputs from Atlassian Team.  Learning never stop for me. 

Best, Joseph

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0 votes

@Richard Morgan -

If my answer addressed your ask, please click on accept answer when you have a chance.

Best, Joseph

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