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Roles and Responsibilities for Jira Admins

All, 

I would like to know what your roles and responsibilities are ad Jira Cloud Admins. What tasks do you take on day to day and how do your support your organizations? 

I ask because Jira "ownership" has been added to my plate and I would like to define some of the roles and responsibilities for this admin role. 

Thank you, 

 

Joe 

 

 

8 answers

Think of Jira Ownership as being responsible for making the use of Jira successful in your organization.

It is not just all the daily administration tasks that build out a Jira site but the understanding and appreciation for how people in your organization can be successful with Jira. Know what work they do and, most importantly, how they talk about the work. Because lining up the work with the features and capabilities provided by Jira and coming up with a corporate culture and vocabulary is essential.

There are a whole lot of words that can confuse and distract users and management because Jira is both incredibly powerful and amazingly flexible. Jira provides solid out of the box capabilities, but it is not omnipotent. There are tweaks and adjustments every organization makes. You need to help your Jira community to understand the fundamentals of Jira and then adapt and extend it to the needs of your organization. Know the core of Jira as being the Issue object that can be configured into a vast array of types like Stories, Tasks, Action Item, Bug, Request, Change Request, Problem, Document, etc., whatever it is that a human can understand and work on and track. You need to appreciate how to use key things like Epics, Releases and Components to organize work and provide boundaries. You need to appreciate Projects and Teams and Groups and Filters and Permissions to focus work for those doing the work and for those overseeing and sponsoring the work.

Good luck and enjoy.

A lot of it depends on the organization. For example, size: Do you have an IT dept of 4 people, or do you have 20 developers on staff. What's Jira being used for? Jira Software for development, or are you using Jira Service Management as your help desk? 

Jira Software, depending on the size of your development team may be a "one & done" setup with very little administrative work thereafter. However, if you have the help desk, that can be a full time job in itself, depending on whether or not your support team has a lot of moving parts. (constantly changing teams, multiple locations, etc.)

Give us a bit of background and I wouldn't be surprised to find several here that are in the exact same position as you are.

Excellent points Keith. This is for software development, our IT staff is 900 people. We are currently going through a transformation so we are in Shu or crawl stage....we might not even be crawling. But definitely starting our journey with Jira cloud. Currently we have about 20 teams utilizing jira but we continue to roll scrum out to our entire org through 2022. 

Let me know if I can answer any more questions. It sounds like a lot of people are interested in this topic, that's great. 

Joe 

2 votes
Mykenna Cepek Community Leader Jun 18, 2021

Something not mentioned thus far is "Jira Hygiene" -- minimizing the amount of low-value and zero-value stuff in your Jira instance, most of which has accumulated over time like lint in your couch. Examples:

  • Unused workflows, unused anything (this is zero value, and leads to user and admin confusion).
  • Duplicate or similar things (schemes, scheme elements, issue types, statuses, priorities, custom field values, labels, etc).
  • Projects that could be archived (or even deleted, e.g. if empty)

It's amazing how much junk Jira instances accumulate over time. Taking it a little at a time can help keep it from getting overwhelming. Some values of this housekeeping effort:

  • Easier to administer the instance -- honestly, it takes time to click through PAGES of Screen definitions, most of them redundant or not needed; less confusion and accidental errors; better onboarding for new admins.
  • Less confusing for users -- too many similar choices just encourages sprawl, leads to confusion and questions; clarity and simplicity win here
  • Easier enterprise reporting -- consistency across projects helps when rolling up data across group/divisions/departments/etc on dashboards, reports, roadmaps, etc.

Learn more here:

https://confluence.atlassian.com/clean/clean-up-your-jira-instance-1018788592.html

The above article includes a link to a good video called How to clean up your Atlassian suite (without losing your damn mind) from Atlassian Summit 2020.

I fully agree with @Mykenna Cepek 

Especially when taking over an existing Jira instance, tidying up all the old junk will force you to understand all the different options and capabilities of Jira. Getting rid of all the old stuff makes life much easier in the long run.

@Giovanny MACARTHUR 

I don't know what your level of knowledge about Jira is, but if you do not understand the different settings under "Settings" --> "Issues" already, you need to get started on understanding how these things function, how they work together and what you can do with them. Might seem overwhelming, but without it you will not be able to support your operations properly.

Be the go to person for everything Jira

- setup new projects

- setup best practices

- train new users

- train other power users (PMs etc..)

- reporting

- find plugins for specific needs

- implement new solutions, find new solutions, be the problem solver 

- help implement new workflows, schemes etc... 

- modify anything as needed to enable the teams to work better and smarter

- implement automations for the same

- .... 

Hi, Giovanny. In my understanding, Jira admins typically:

  • configure Jira for various organizational needs (e.g. create projects, set permissions);
  • add and onboard new users;
  • support their organization and their users (e.g. troubleshooting raised issues);
  • help users get most of Jira (e.g. introducing add-ons, create or show automation rules).

I'm eager to learn more about other admins' experiences too, so I'll be watching this post.

Administration contains:

1. Add/Modify Users.

2. Create Projects, Boards, Filters, Dashboards and much more.........

3. Create Issue Types, Screens, Workflows, Custom Fields and many more.......

4. Loads of Project Configuration changes, customizations when number of projects increase.

I seriously recommend you to get Training or recruit a dedicated Jira Admin for your organization.

Once you onboard your users and get your basic projects and workflows taken care of, your work only begins. Adding new projects and users is one thing, but when they start adding configuring/reconfiguring workflows it become cumbersome. I remember the days when it was only a few projects and a few workflows. 13 years later, it's completely NUTS! Remember to just BREATHE!

You should also work on standardizing your workflows/roles/groups and try to push Dashboards onto the teams so you don't have to maintain them.  If you can get an IT org to manage user access (onboarding/offboarding) new users that helps to reduce your workload.   Teams will also be looking for advice on automation and there's always requests for workflow changes and new custom fields.

I agree - training will sure help.

Mykenna Cepek Community Leader Jun 18, 2021

This is where Company-Managed (classic) Projects can really help. Although if you have 20 teams already using Jira, you might already have a lot of sprawl.

An early goal might be to coalesce as many workflows as possible into a few. Ditto for things like Issue Types, Statuses, Priorities, etc. Standardizing and working towards cross-team consistency can help with larger organizational goals.

Team-Managed (NextGen) Projects can seem to be an easy answer, but the consistency of data often needed for large companies (you mentioned 900 people) tends to be impeded by the team expressing full autonomy in these projects.

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