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Creating a bug tracker for multiple external partners

I am looking to see if there is a way to create an all in one tracker within JIRA. Currently we partner with multiple other companies. We have our JIRA instance that we track bugs in but then go to each individual partners JIRA instance and basically copy and paste their bugs into our tracker and sync them that way. This is very time consuming and also opens up the opportunity of missing something. 

  I wanted to see about a way of setting up one instance when our external partners can access this instance of JIRA and log their issues.  The thing is we need it so that they only see their issues and none of the other external partners issues. 


Please help

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Hello @Josh Barnes 

Welcome to the community.

JIRA Service Management would enable you to have a single JIRA project in a single JIRA instance that you could allow external individuals to access. It can be set up so that the external individuals are grouped into organizations and can see the issue created only by members of their organization.

JIRA Service Management is licensed per "agent" - those are the users in your organization who can access the project and manipulate the issues. You can have an unlimited number of external individuals ("customers"). Users in your organization that have access to your JIRA Software product do not automatically get access to your JIRA Service Management project as "agents". Only "agents" and "customers" can interact with the project.

The workflow is organized around providing "service", though, like a help desk. It isn't really set up for tracking software bugs. However, you could create bugs in your JIRA Software project that link to the JIRA Service issues. Your external customers would not be able to see the bugs in your JIRA Software project.

Thank you for the information about this! So may I ask you one more question about how I can go about setting up the different external partners as organizations  and allowing them into a single project as well as only allowing them to see items added by members or their organization.

In the Service Management project there is a resource called Organizations. You set up an Organization for each vendor. You add the users from that vendor to that Organization. 

You could set up an Automation Rule that would automatically set the Organization field of each ticket to the Organization that the Reporter belongs to. That would allow other members of the same Organization to see the issue.

In the Project Settings you limit Customer Sharing to only members of their same Organization, which would prevent the inadvertent sharing of issues between organizations.

In JIRA Service Management, customers can see only the tickets shared with them or with their Organization. That is what prevents them from seeing tickets that belong to others.

Hello Trudy,

    Thank you for the update is there a way to complete this within the Jira Software instead of trying to move everything to Jira Service Desk?

Are you working with a Company Managed or a Team Managed project?

I do not believe there is a way to do this with the JIRA Software product, particularly on the Free plan.

To grant vendors access to your JIRA Software project will require you to grant each user from that vendor a license.

There is a feature in paid plans called Issue Security Schemes. I have not used it before, but it might be relevant to your need.

However, the design of permission management for a Company Managed is not really geared towards allowing users to see only a subset of issues in a project. If you need that sort of discretionary access, most people would do that by splitting the issues into separate projects and doing something like I suggested in this post. And for Team Managed projects the ability to granularly manage permissions is non-existent.

Good afternoon @Trudy Claspill

    Thank you for all the advice you have given me through my many posts. So while this profile shows that I am on a "Free" Product plan I am currently working with my employer getting ready to transition our server Jira instance to a cloud instance.

   I have a question about the response you had about the Jira Service Desk instance to my question. While using the Jira Service Desk software I would be able to link the Service desk tickets to the current ticket within our Jira software? I ask because if we could utilize that to keep everything in sync and tracked that would be very helpful as well.

Thank you,


Hello @Josh Barnes 

When I mentioned linking the issues in your Service Management project to issues in your Software project I was talking just about the use of the generic issue linking feature. That feature on its own does not include any synchronization of data between linked issues.

If you wanted to implement some sort of synchronization there are a few different ways to try that. There are third party apps that you could purchase and add to your environment that support synchronizing data. I have not used any of them before, so I don't have any recommendations as to which might be best for you.

Another method to consider is the use of the Automation feature in JIRA Cloud. You could set up rules that would be triggered based on events (i.e. some change to the Software issue or the Service Management issue) and execute actions against the linked issue accordingly.

It would take understanding exactly what you want to try to synchronize between the issues to determine which solution would be viable and better.

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