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Approval processes in JSM - What are the options?

Christopher Skoropada _Appsvio_
Marketplace Partner
Marketplace Partners provide apps and integrations available on the Atlassian Marketplace that extend the power of Atlassian products.
Oct 04, 2023

In this article, I highlight different approaches for the approval process within Jira Service Management. The mentioned examples are more about internal customers. However, they could also work for external customers but under specific conditions.  

Approve by… a comment

Adding a comment like ‘Approved’ is the most basic way of the approval process. It’s very limited and not scalable. 



  • You can do it with pure Jira Service Management


  • no clear information on the ticket about the approve status,
  • approver has to be added into the ticket as a request participants,
  • can’t use SLA to check the approval time as approval is not based on the issue status.


Use Approvals

The most common approach is to use default Approval. With a simple configuration, you can provide approve actions on the portal but also on the agent side. It’s a much better option than approval by comment. 



  • you can do it with pure Jira Service Management,
  • looks nice on the portal, 
  • allows more complex approvals like “one from two”,
  • can approve via email notification,
  • it’s based on the workflow so you have clear information about the approval status,
  • approvers are defined in a User Picker custom field so they can be set in Automation.



  • approvers are hard to guess,
  • not easy to be compliant when Approvers is set on the request by the requester (If I can approve my own requests then the process is poorly-designed :) ).



The main question in this approach is: How to set the approvers into the custom field? This is also the most difficult part in many companies.  

How to get the manager of the customer?

The answer depends on where you store that information. Let’s go through some common places where this information is stored. 


Manager is unknown 

Here, even the best tools will not help you at all :) You should start thinking about the architecture and tools you could use to store the users’ information. 


Manager is defined in the external database or service

Large organizations usually use user directories software like Azure AD, AWS Directory Service or Octa. They also store much more data like contact details, related assets or start date. Because of the complexity of mentioned tools, you might not be able to use Automation to grab the manager easily. You could use available apps like Elements Connect - external data fields or Azure AD Attributes for Jira.


Manager is defined within Jira

In this scenario, we don’t have any external user directory but the organization structure within the company is known. Unfortunately, Jira doesn’t have an option to set relations between users. That is where Appsvio’s app, Customer & Organization Management can do the magic. Within this app you can set a manager for Jira Service Management customers. Once we have this information in the app, we can use Automation or this post function to copy that information into the Approvals custom field on the issue. This will dynamically set the managers, based on the organization structure.



Do you know any other approve’s solutions that fit into the JSM? Please, share your thoughts  in the comments.



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