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Using bulk changes to expedite project administration in Jira [Profields]

Profields is an amazing tool to expand Jira's core capabilities into the realm of project management, as I've already explained somewhere else in the community. Although less known, benefits also extend to system administration.

In this article, I'm going to cover three different scenarios where administrating projects in a Jira instance becomes a terrifying, menial, error-prone ordeal. I hope that you haven't encountered them. But if you do, remember that the nightmare can go away if you start using Profields' Bulk Operations.

Please note that I'm covering functionalities that are present in the Server version of Profields. Unfortunately, limitations to app development for Atlassian cloud tools are tolling, and this feature is not yet part of the Cloud version.

Project lead configuration

The story:

Jack is a Systems Engineer and master Jira Admin at an American financial services corporation. He decides what is done in Jira, how and by whom

Jack works with a group of 12 admins. Together, they run a very organized corporate wiki on Confluence, where all processes are documented.

The machine is clean, oiled and works rapidly. With exceptions: with an increasing turnover in tech roles, admins know any given project lead will likely leave the company within 18 to 24 months into the job. No matter how hard they’ve tried, there’s no sound process to replace them globally in their assigned Jira projects. Manual work is the only way, and it can take up to four hours for every 200 projects. 

The pain:

Each operation is painful, as it requires 5 steps, moving between different pages, and lots of scrolling. Doing it 200 times in a row is admin nightmare!

The Gain:

After purchasing Profields, it takes a minute to globally replace a project lead using the Bulk Operations features. First search for the project lead in the project navigator; then, assign a new project lead.


Bulk project lead

The new process is documented in the company wiki and makes Jack and his 12 admins really happy.


User roles administration: guaranteed complexity

In any environment where users participate in a number of projects and rotate periodically, administrating roles can be very tolling. 

The Story:

Marcus is a Scrum Master in a team of eight members working on several Jira Projects. As the team is multifunctional, they have different roles that rotate from one sprint to another. Those roles are defined in Jira and Marcus needs to update them every time a sprint starts as he is the Project Admin.

The Pain: 

Creating Roles and adding users to existing roles is done on a project-basis. This is nice for project admins, but it also means that the task escalates exponentially in 3 dimensions: number of projects x number of roles x number of users. 

Every two weeks Marcus must update the roles and their members in all the Projects that he is in charge of, spending about 45 minutes every time. This is a waste of precious time, and so repetitive that he sometimes makes mistakes.

The Gain:

After installing Profields he can update the roles of all the Projects with just a few clicks while he assures the consistency between them. Each operation can assign all users in all relevant projects to a single role, significantly reducing the complexity indicated above.

bulk roles

To delete the right projects... you first need to find them

The Story: 

Catherine is the CIO at a logistics corporation that is shutting down its business in an Asian country.  

The Pain:

When the time comes to clean up Jira of anything related to activities in that country, there seems to be no easy way to 1) retrieve a complete inventory of related Jira projects, and 2) delete them. To make things worse, many projects in Jira had been created ad-hoc without a business case or a proper initiation process. Additionally, local projects can have international project leads and vice versa.

Catherine assigns 5 people to the task of analyzing the entire portfolio of thousands of projects on a case by case basis.

The Gain: 

With Profields, the task would have taken a total of 3 hours of only one Jira Admin: searches by country, backing up exceptions, and deletion in three clicks using Bulk Operations.

bulk delete projects

How would you use this feature?

This is how the DEISER team, including our veteran consultants, imagine using Bulk Operations. But it would be great to know examples of how the community is tackling these problems.


1 comment


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Jose A_ Jiménez February 7, 2019

Excellent post Jimmy!

Like Capi [resolution] likes this
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