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How to have a simple Kanban Board from Different Projects

Hello everybody,

I am leading a team where each one of our members is working on different projects. I have created a project for our team and created a simple filter to view all of the issues that we currently working on. 

As different projects have different workflows, I am not able to show all of the issues that we work on in a specific time. Jira tells me that I need to add all these statuses as columns but it makes the board super complicated.

Is there a workaround for this? I checked the "Simplified Workflow" option but it says I need to display only one project in order to use it. 

Thanks in advance,

Regards

2 answers

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Answer accepted

Welcome to the Community!

If you want a simple board, you need to have simple data to work with on it.  Your "projects have different workflows leading to too many columns" has two basic solutions:

  • Change the workflows so that each project is using a similar, or even identical, workflow.
  • Build your board columns to group similar steps together.

This is a really simple example, but hopefully explains the two options and one of the more clever things you might do:

  • Project 1:  Open -> In Progress -> Closed
  • Project 2:  New -> In Progress -> Done

For solution 1, go to the two teams and ask them to agree on shared names, maybe ending up with To-Do -> In Progress -> Done.  You can still have different workflows, just select shared status for each step.

For solution 2, create the board with 

  • Column: To Do - contains the Open and New status
  • Column: In Progress - contains the In Progress status
  • Column: Done - contains the Closed and Done status

A variation on solution 1 is your suggestion of "simplified workflow".   To use simplified workflows, you have to make sure all the projects that the board is looking at are all using the same workflow.  It has to be the same shared workflow, not just ones that use the same status.

Once you have hit the "simplified" button, your board owners will be able to change the workflow.  I'm not sure that's what you need here, but a pre-requisite for it is "everyone using the same workflow", so it has some relevance to your question.

Hello Nic!

I haven't been using Jira as an Admin in a while and it is so good to see the community again. Such a nice and helpful answer!

Thank you very much. I used the second solution as the first one requires lots of convincing between different teams. To be honest I wasn't aware that you can simply create new columns. I thought they need to be a part of a workflow but now it is super easy. 

I will bring the "Simplifying our workflows" topic up for discussion as I believe all the engineering projects should have the same workflow if they do the same thing.

Thanks again!

Like Nic Brough _Adaptavist_ likes this

Could you add some clarification on your use of the term projects? You mentioned that each of your team members are working on different projects (are these Jira projects)?

The simplified workflow will only work if your board is only showing one project. using the same workflow across all the issue types. Given your use case, that's not going to work.

The best option to reduce complexity is to reduce the differences between all of your different workflows. This will potentially reduce the number of columns in your board. Yes - if you want to see issues in a status on your board you'll have to map the status to a column.

I don't like this idea much, but it may help, maybe you can create a board for each project that has a different workflow, and create a master board that shows all the issues across all projects in a more complicated setup. This will reduce the board complexity for each of your team members, at a cost of you having to navigate the complexity on your master board.

 

Hope this helps

Sorry Samuel, but this is incorrect:

"The simplified workflow will only work if your board is only showing one project."

You can have many projects on a simplified board.  They all need to be set up to use the same shared workflow for all their issue types.

Like # people like this

Ohh man you're right I did not remember that right. Thanks for the correction bud!

Like # people like this

It's really well buried in the docs, and there was a time when it was right - if I remember rightly, the version of Jira that simplified workflows arrived in only let you simplify if the board was based on just "project = xyz", it wouldn't do it if the query had any other clauses (other than the order by).  I think the next release extended it to allow "all projects the board selects for" though, so it wasn't there for long!

Like Doğucan Baskın likes this

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