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Make Jira Service Desk free for Covid-19 volunteers

Dave Quarrell March 20, 2020

Communities everywhere are pulling together to help each other through the coronavirus outbreak. In my local town nearly 20% of the population have registered as potential volunteers in the 6 days since a Facebook group was launched.

Already they're delivering shopping, prescriptions and baby supplies to those self-isolated, or keeping in touch with vulnerable and lonely people stuck at home.

This is awesome, but the organisers are struggling to cope with the sheer volume of requests and offers of help.

Jira Service Desk is the ideal tool to help with this:

  • a friendly portal to collect requests,
  • queues to prioritise them and assign volunteers
  • dashboards to visualise what's going on.

It can even address privacy / data protection concerns for people submitting personal details.

Atlassian recently launched a free tier, but for JSD this only allows 3 agents who can view and manage queues - not nearly enough for a complex emergency response, even in a small community like ours. For four users and up it's $20/user/month which puts it out of reach of a bootstrapped response team.

Atlassian should make JSD free for any group providing voluntary Covid-19 response services. There couldn't be any greater endorsement of the usefulness or usability of their tools than to have them underpin a grass-roots effort in time of crisis.

Please help me get Atlassian on board with this ASAP.



Kat Warner
Marketplace Partner
Marketplace Partners provide apps and integrations available on the Atlassian Marketplace that extend the power of Atlassian products.
March 20, 2020

Someone from the Atlassian Community team should be here soon :)

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John Theofanopoulos March 21, 2020

Thumbs up for the idea! Agreed :)

Andy Heinzer
Atlassian Team
Atlassian Team members are employees working across the company in a wide variety of roles.
March 21, 2020

Hi Dave,

Thanks for posting about this topic.  I am excited to hear that people want to use our products to help others in need.  Unfortunately, I am not in a position that I can just grant unlimited users to a Cloud site.  I want to make sure that you are aware that there is an existing program that Atlassian has to significantly discount our Cloud offerings to registered non-profit organizations.  Check out our Atlassian Community License Request form.  

The TL;DR from that form is that for qualifying organizations, our server products can be licensed to them completely free, while our Cloud products can be licensed at 75% off the commercial prices.

That said, I have this feeling that your organization might not technically be a registered non-profit yet.  It sounds like you have formed a new, grassroots organization in quick response to the ever changing world we live in, if I am correct then your organization would not qualify for this particular program. 

I agree that people could benefit from your suggestion in a big way.  So I'm going to try to escalate this issue up to my team to see what we can do to help here.



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Dave Quarrell March 21, 2020

Andy - thanks for your quick response to this.

I do understand you can't just grant unlimited users. Anything you can do quickly would be helpful. For example, I've started to rough out a Service Desk Cloud setup for my local group in the free tier but I really need to be able to add 15-20 agents almost immediately. I can't afford the $300-375/month this would cost! Even at 75% off it'd still be nearly $100/month. We don't (yet) have any proper IT infrastructure so cloud is our only option for the time being.

I am aware of the Community Licensing scheme and you're correct that we're not yet a registered non-profit - since it's only been a week since the group formed. There must be a lot of teams in the same position, having rapidly organised to meet the Covid-19 challenge.

If Atlassian could offer:

1. to waive the requirement for official registration, at least temporarily, so that new grassroots organisations can access the Community Licensing

2. to increase the number of agents for the free tier even to say 20, rather than 3, for volunteer groups, and/or

3. to increase the Cloud discount under Community Licensing to say 90% for the duration of the crisis

then this would make a real, immediate difference.

Thanks for your offer to escalate - much appreciated

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Jim C_
Atlassian Team
Atlassian Team members are employees working across the company in a wide variety of roles.
March 26, 2020

Hi @Dave Quarrell I did respond to a support ticket you had with one of my colleagues.

Dave Quarrell March 26, 2020

Hi @Jim C_

Thanks for following this up. 

I've meant to reply to this post giving an update - Atlassian have very kindly offered free access to JSD Cloud for a larger number of users for my local group. I've been flat-out working on getting them set up around my day-job so apologies for not providing an update here. 

In your latest update to my support ticket you've indicated that Atlassian is working on a more general response for teams supporting their communities through this exceptional situation. That's great news and I look forward to getting more details as soon as you have them. I've already had enquiries from other groups in our wider local area about a need for the same tools. 

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