Bug workflows in addition to Agile workflows: how can I have both?

We're setup with JIRA from a Agile perspective in that we have our own workflow and our sprints have columns that work for us (To do, In Progress, Blocked, To Review & Done). The workflow allows us to contain the team from moving into the Done column without a review phase, which is great.

Going forward we now want to expand on this but I can't see how to do it (despite tons of reading).

Essentially we want to:

  1. Create a unique workflow for the art team since they have different constraints. This workflow needs to have it's own unique columns in the sprint, something like: Model, Texture, Stage 1 Approval, Rig, Animate, Stage 2 Approval, Done. This workflow is unique to the artists and I figure they would have their own parallel sprint then, but I can't figure out how to have unique columns depending on the workflow. 

Can someone assist or advise on how best to achieve this goal?

Going forward we would like to have the same for QA, since their workflow is unique.


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Your goal here is to have three workflows; developer, artist and QA.

You need to set up the following:

You need different projects and/or issue types to hang the configuration off.  The most simple case is to have a single project with three issue types.  But you could have a project for each type of workflow, or you could have one project with bug/feature/task for devs, portrait/landscape for artists, defect/test for QA and so on.  Or have one project for each type of workflow.

Once you have the differentiation for projects, you create a "workflow scheme" (one for each project if you're using different projects) and that contains the "issue type X uses workflow Y" mapping.

When that's set up, you can now reconfigure your board.  Give it a filter that pulls in all the issues you need (again simple case is "single project, three issue types", so the filter is just "project = X", but you may need "projects in (x, y, z) ).  Add all the columns you need, and then map the status from the various workflows into the columns.

Note that this does mean that you can not use "simplified" workflows - this all has to be done by administrators, your users will not be able to mess with the workflows.

Okay this is where I am so far:

  • I have a single project
  • This has issues for: epic, story, sub task & bug
  • I have a workflow for "Agile" which uses epic, story, sub task. This workflow has matching columns and everything works.
  • I then created a workflow for "Bug" which uses bug issue. I now have no idea how to give a board two workflows depending on the issue type. It seems I can only select one.

So I'm stuck.

This has lead me to believe that I could instead have two boards, one for Bug and one for Agile, is that what you're alluding to here? Ideally we want one board for one project and then the workflows adjust within this, but I'm unsure if thats even possible.


if you want to combine them into one board, you need to give the Project two work flows. This is done by updating the workflow scheme. (note you may want to create a scheme specifically for this project.)

See here for some help:



Once that is done, you will see the additional status for the bug on your board. You can then configure the status/column associations for your board.

You can certainly have two boards if you want, or you can combine the two... it's up to you as to what would work best... Frankly the workflow status and intent appear to be so different, I'd probably go with separate projects, boards, etc... but that's just my take.

>I then created a workflow for "Bug" which uses bug issue. I now have no idea how to give a board two workflows depending on the issue type.

You don't.  You use a "workflow scheme" to tell your project(s) to use one workflow for bugs and another workflow for other issue types.

Then your board will show the status in the "configure columns" section of the admin.

We ideally want to have the bugs in the same project, just to make it easier for the programmers and artists when we get super busy. Having the single 'column view' is nice because you can see all of your tasks in one area. I do agree it might not be ideal, but we'd like to try first.

@Nic: so I did create two schemes, one for bugs and another for all other items:

  • Workflow agile scheme: this has a specific workflow attached to story, epic and task
  • Workflow bug scheme: this has a different workflow attached to the bugs.

If I then go to my project, select Project Settings, I can see that Workflows has "Workflow agile scheme" as the selected scheme. I can't see to add the bug scheme anywhere - I can only replace. So I can only have one scheme activated at any one time.



if you want them in the same project you can't use two different schemes - add the Bug workflow to the Agile Scheme and assign it to the Bug issue type. Assign all other issue types to the Agile workflow.

As you noted, each project can have only one workflow scheme...

BUT a workflow scheme can have many workflows.

Great idea! I've tried to do this very quickly but can't see to find out how to identify the issue within the workflow. I have two separate workflows within the scheme, but how would the bug flow know it's a big without some form of validator? I did dig around and couldn't see anything like "if issue=bug".


(see attached in case it helps)

Screen Shot 2016-04-28 at 4.50.16 PM.png

You don't need a validator - the workflow scheme is already doing it.

A workflow scheme is to tell the project which workflow to use for each issue type.  e.g. Workflow 1 for bug, workflow 2 for features, workflow 3 for all other issue types.

Your diagram shows one workflow though - was it aiming to show us two?

Thanks very much to both of you (Nic and Tom)! I finally solved this and all of the above helped.

As such I'll accept the top answer, but all comments were great.

In summary:

  • I created three workflows, each for the types of user/flow we need.
  • I created one workflow scheme and then assigned each workflow to the type of issue it's related to (this is where I was going wrong, i hadn't realised you could do this).
  • I then navigated to each project and set the columns to match the workflow fields required.
  • Users now have three workflows depending on their requirements, all on one simply board.


Thanks again for all the help, really appreciated.


Glad that helped...

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