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Jira Service Desk – Who does what?

We’ve been talking a lot about Jira Service Desk onboarding on Community recently: A is for Activate: Share your top Jira Service Desk onboarding tips for new users!, Jira Service Desk – Don’t be afraid, the journey begins with curiosity!. While these articles provide a great overview, let me focus on Jira Service Desk user roles.


Who is using Jira Service Desk?

Let’s say you’re a support team managing incidents and service requests. You’ll certainly find the below users on Jira Service Desk:


 Clients – They raise tickets.


 Support team – They work on tickets and help clients solve their issues.


Experts – Support team escalates them complex tickets.


In Jira Service Desk terminology:


Who works where?


Customers have access to the customer portal only. They can raise requests and follow up on previous ones through there.



Agents work on Jira Service Desk. They can communicate with both customers and collaborators through comments: public comments with customers, internal comments with collaborators.



Collaborators work on Jira Core or Jira Software. However, they can view Jira Service Desk issues and comment internally on them. This means they can’t communicate with customers, but they can discuss with agents to help them investigate.


How do they work together?

The below diagram sums it up:


Who needs which license?

Customers don’t use any license since they can only access the customer portal.

An agent needs a Jira Service Desk license.

A collaborator already has a Jira Core or Software license and doesn’t need a Jira Service Desk one.


I hope this article helps you understand who does what on Jira Service Desk. Let me know in the comments if you have any question!

- Manon


Jack Brickey Community Leader Aug 14, 2018

@Manon Soubies-Camy, great article. For sure the users in Jira Service Desk deserves its own article as it can be confusing when getting started. This is well laid out and I'm sure will help the Community. Cheers!

Moses Thomas Community Leader Aug 14, 2018

@Manon Soubies-CamyGood! this will  help  in this community!

As per our other discussion..... thank you so much for this @Manon Soubies-Camy!


Might want to change the description from "Customers have access to the customer portal only." to something that reflects that "Customers can use email, the customer portal, or a combination of the two".  Most customers are still (in our experience) wanting to use the lowest friction interface, and email provides that for 90% of ours.

Like Justin McCamish likes this

Valuable and well described. Thanks for sharing @Manon Soubies-Camy  

Thanks all!

@Greg Johnson thanks for mentioning emails! In my experience emails are only a backup and not really used :)

I wanted to add collaborators to the project but i cannot find this option. Can someone explain to me how to add collaborators to our project?

@ICT PDC I can't find any up-to-date Atlassian documentation about it, but to add someone as a collaborator you need to:

  1. Make sure the collaborator has a Jira Core or Software license
  2. Go to Project settings > People (or Users and roles if you're on Server)
  3. Add the collaborator user to the Service Desk Team role

@Manon Soubies-Camy Thanks for the quick answer. it works

@Manon Soubies-Camy Simple and to the point - thanks.


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