Show subtasks on Jira Agile Planning Boards

Is there any way to show subtakss on a JIRA Agile planning board? This would be most help when a feature can not be finished in one sprint.

Thanks,
Chris

51 answers

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6 votes

Hello Chris,

Actually, JIRA Agile will not count sub-tasks in. What we advise is to move them up one level. For instance, change issues to epics and sub-tasks to issues. THis way you will be able to manage them in a more feasable way.

If you'd like to take a look at a very detailed answer regarding this matter, please see here:

http://blogs.atlassian.com/2012/09/agile-qa-greenhopper-time-estimates-with-sub-tasks/

Benito Picarelli

Not a very useful blog post, doesn't provide a usable solution to the question and also includes some comments linking to GHS-5303 ticket which was made secret by Atlassian.

I agree, that link wasn't helpful at all. Also, the "change issues to epics" doesn't work when those issues already belong to epics, ie. Epic #1 has Issue #1 has Sub-Task #1. Converting Issue #1 to an Epic is impossible because then it can no longer be a member of Epic #1 (since Epics can't belong to Epics).

this for me is a major frustration with JIRA agile. I would like to associate a number of subtasks to a story and the distribute across the team (which could be in a different timezone) and then manage them across the Agile Board with all the easy to read transparency that this view gives me. Story points not being aggregated up from sub tasks is another major frustration.

I'm late but let's see this as a "this still is a problem". Please make sub tasks a thing in the Backlog view. All of the mentioned (show sub tasks and sum their estimations up)

I agree.  I am introducing SCRM board to my organization.  I am used to logging Story Point on User Story (Story Point = ROM) and estimating hours and resource mgmt, on Sub Tasks.  I would expect burndown charts to be based off of remaining hours of sub tasks.

Please advise how to accomplish this using Jira.

Still a problem.  So frustrating.  Trying to workaround with odd/crazy board configurations and that also doesn't help - subtasks (or parent, or anything that would let me connect an issue to another issue...) aren't a choice in the issue detail view config for a board either.  Atlassian you makin me crazy!

Is this another unfixed bug, or a very weird "feature"?

Same here, definitely need this capability.

This is causing our org major issues.  I can't overstate this.  The other "fix" to this would be allowing "tasks" to report to "stories."  Never understood the rationale of putting "tasks" and "stories" on the same level anyhow.  Is there nothing that can be done to elevate this so it can be addressed?

Adding another comment saying this should be completed.

 

Quote from the article you linked, "All of that said one of the key precepts of Agile is finding the way that works for you." Using Sub-tasks works for various organizations, so why not develop what users need instead of forcing them into a specific workflow that may not be as effective.

This is not a solution. I absolutely need to have subtasks showing up on my scrum board. We are already using epics. We cannot escalate subtasks to tasks. 

The work around I'm going to have to go with is a new sprint planning kanban board and a kanban sprint board. 

Just another way jira has too many unnecessary configuration options and not the options we actually need. 

I just googled this topic and found this thread - I'm having this exact issue and am very frustrated with the fact that this feature is not enabled. Is Jira even agile when it comes to developing their software? I'm very surprised this has not been tackled yet as it seems like a no-brainer. 

What I am specifically looking for: in the Active Sprints view, for ALL stories to show ALL subtasks in that view. I have a weird bug or whatever is going on, that shows only 8 Stories with subtasks, and the rest of the stories are only "other issues", even though they have multiple pointed sub tasks as well. 

SOLUTIONS:

1. I have found I think a fix for this, just don't know if it will last. So far it works as I want it to. 

To see all subtasks:
- Go to the 3 dot menu at the top right of the screen where your picture is
- Click on the 3 dot menu and then tap on "Expand all swimlanes"
-Done
- If that doesn't do it:
- Tap on "Collapse all swimlanes"
- tap on "Expand all swimlanes" again
- Done

2. : October: 2 monthes later, still having the same issues. However, discovered yet another fix, try this if number 1 is failing you:

To show stories in current sprints that are missing and or have stories break out their sub tasks in swimlanes:

- When creating a story, or sub task take a look at the "Fix version"

- Assign the Fix version to the version that you are developing for

- This will enable the story or sub task to be seen in the correct area/swim lanes.

For example:

With my company, we had "Alpha" as the boards "fix version". When anything, story, bug, sub task, was not assigned as "Alpha" it would not show up in the swimlanes, and immediately throw the story in the "Other issues" section, or simply not show it at all. When assigning the Fix version, it immediately fixed the problem.

Or you could just switch to Pivotal Tracker, and never have frustrating issues like this again. 

It works!  thank goodness and thanks for figuring it out; absolutely needed it

Thank you for posting your solution. Although I didn't get it to work right away I discovered that it was effective if I turned all of the filters off as well as collapsing and re-expanding the swimlanes. Just thought I would mention it on the offchance that this is the problem with your other board which is still failing.  

Glad to help!! I added one more solution now that I found. Hope that helps as well if you haven't solved it yet.

Benito already answered this question, but that "answer" was not very helpful.  Obviously if you have 10 issues with 10 sub-tasks each, you're not going to want to convert them in to 100 un-categorized tickets just to use the scrum board!  Unfortunately it seems a true answer doesn't exist, so the best one can do is explain why Atlassian won't solve this problem.  The link Benito provided does just that, but since he didn't provide a summary of it, allow me:

Atlassian has a very narrow idea of how their tool should be used, and when they use it they don't put story points on sub-tasks.  Instead, they put hours on sub-tasks and use them for tracking. The way they see it, if they allowed sub-tasks on the scrum board it would amount to mixing planning (story points) and tracking (hours).

What the article doesn't actually say, but implies, is that they can't imagine anyone wanting to put story points on sub-tasks and use them for planning.  This seems to be the real reason why there's no option to show sub-tasks on the scrum board.

My favorite part of the article was the end.  After they just finished explaining why they won't allow you to use their tool in a way that works best for you they write:

"one of the key precepts of Agile is finding the way that works for you"

Thanks Atlassian, so I should find a way that works for me ... as long as it's exactly the same way you do it?

yep - there is pure agile and pragmatic agile...

Well, even in "pure" agile there's nothing that says you can't group your tickets within a given epic!

I agree. It would be very useful to have this feature. Complex programs can require this level of granuality, dont they? Is it difficult to add this feature?

Great job Jeremy of summarizing a completely useless article by Atlassian. As long as we do it their way then we can do it anyway we want!

I agree with everyone's comments. Why would you want to create an Epic for an issue that needs resolved in one sprint? Then what is the point of creating subtasks? Conflicting information all the way around....

@Benito Picarelli you or the Jira product manager may find these comments useful. I love your tool, but there are certain quirks like this one that make it good instead of great. I would have expected sub-tasks to appear on a jira board, but apparently they don't... Now I have to convert all my subtasks to issues and link them... not so much fun.

Even if they won't put subtasks on the board, at least display that there are subtasks. At a minimum show the number of subtasks. Even better is to have a rich row that can tip open to reveal the subtasks indented under the story.

Created an account just to +1 this.

@Benito Picarelli

Can you please expound on why Atlassian has (seemingly) chosen to ignore a basic and very reasonable customer mass request for 20+ months?

 

 

 

The big issue here seems to be a focus on generalist developers and not specialists.

If I have an Epic (big goal) with multiple user stories (as a user I want to add some stuff to the widget) but I have a small team of specialists front-end and back-end developers this becomes a serious issue to balance.  The user story has sub-tasks for the both front-end and back-end developer.  However the back-end developer is behind schedule due to high priority bug fixes.  In order to give my front-end developer work for the sprint I have to pull in the user-story and bury the back-end developer even further?  I have to disassociate the user-story from the real epic in order to make it an epic?  I have to change the sub-tasks into tasks and relate them?  There's a specific connection between these types of issues, particularly from a reporting standpoint.  Why force all this jumping through hoops?  For small teams of specialists it seems impossible to use agile and be forced to using kanban

This is insane, you create a subtask and later go to the backlog page to find it only to think the ticket was never created at all or somehow disappeared into the aether.

Very very +1.

+1 for allowing full use of sub-tasks within agile boards, ensuring that hours & story points (specifically hours in my case) roll up and are summed correctly.  Epics are better for large groups of related issues that span multiple sprints, while sub-tasks are best for sub-dividing a single task that will be completed within a single sprint.

I have found a temporary workaround:

  1. On an Agile Board, click the "Board" dropdown and choose "Configure" 
  2. Click the "Card Layout" tab on the left
  3. In the "Backlog" section there is a dropdown - select "Sub-Tasks" and then click the Add button

Now each ticket in the Agile Board will also list any sub-tasks it has.

 

Screen Shot 2016-01-22 at 9.03.56 AM.png

Screen Shot 2016-01-22 at 9.04.34 AM.png

thank you for posting :o) , but subtasks are not cards by themselves... is there a way to have sub tasks as individual cards?

No sad The main question is still open waiting for Atlassian to do something, but at least this small thing helps me a bit because I can at least see the tasks and the tickets in the same place.

understood, thanks!!!

+1 Just the stories without subtask have None in the bottom. It would be better to have just nothing.

that looks to be different from my configure.  Which JIRA are you using?

not available in On Demand version

This is available in On Demand, I just did it. It's ugly but at least now you can see if a Story in the backlog has sub-tasks associated with it. Thanks Alex!

thank you for this

this worked for me - thank you for sharing

+1 to have an option to see sub-tasks on Agile Board.

This is not about story points only. It is often really necessary to observe:

  1. Status of nesting sub-tasks
  2. Who is assignee
  3. If this sub-task has assignee at all.

For sure separate JQL filters may be created as a workaround, but this is a tricky part and this option does not let you to see 'the big picture': you have to jump across multiple tabs back and forth and remain unconfident you did not missed anything.

+1 for showing Sub-tasks in the Plan view

I just encountered this problem, and it appears that even the parent issue is not shown on the board, although when you go to the issue navigator, they're all there.  I actually opened a support ticket with Atlassian because I thought were were either doing something wrong or it was a bug.  Well, I still think it's a bug, actually!  Good grief, even if it's a sub-task, it's still part of the sprint and should be shown!

+1 to have an option to see sub-tasks on Agile Board.

Definetely need this!

+1 Please add sub-tasks to the Backlog view under their tasks.

+1, this is crippling to not have it. So hard to prioritize within the sprint.

In my Opinion a realy MUST HAVE for the future.

+1 , I cannot believe this is not possible yet.

+1, any update with this?

Just came across this obstacle while setting up Jira Agile. Your solution of using Epic will not work in our company. Please let us know if this will be done in the future so I can move on with my setup.  

Atlassian!! You need to change your ways.  I also want to see my sub-tasks on the sprint planning board.  Creating any sub-tasks becomes useless in an Epic or a Task when using Scrum planning then.

+1 This would reduce the clutter of having issues that are more than just "related to" their parents. After this is implemented, I could simply have sub-tasks.

In my team's sprints, all the sub-tasks make up the story - by completing the sub-tasks the story is completed, so what Alexander proposes above is exactly how I would like to be using it.

+1 for allowing me to show subtasks on the board. Let me choose.

+1 for this request. 

+1 for this request.

At least show that a story has sub-tasks in the summary view.  Is that already possible?

Yes Jim, I found a way this morning! Please see the other comment I just posted.

Hi,

just stumbled over this conversation and would like to share my thoughts. I have not read the lengthy Atlasssian statement, so bare with me if i might repeat something...

Here is how some of our teams using subtasks:

  • a (user-)story is about value for the user. As we want to deliver this value at the end of each sprint, a story has to fit into one iteration
  • Sub-tasks can (optionally) be used to arrange work within the team within one sprint. The estimation is based on the story, so we don't use subtasks in planning. (Some teams even use subtasks only on their internal white board)
  • If a subtask cannot be closed within a sprint, the story cannot be closed. the team has to learn from this for better story estimation
  • for stuff that spans over more than one iteration, we are using epics, labels etc.

In this case subtasks are not relevant for planning, nor for statistics.

What do you think?

best

 

@Benito Picarelli, is there an update on this issue?  Seems like it is affecting many, incl myself, so would hope that it is fixed, or at the top of your backlog.

I think it's standard to create sub-tasks of a Story, assign to different developers to complete their sub-task and want to see it all in the board. And this includes seeing the effort per person.

Regards,

Anders

+1 for this.

To accurately plan a sprint based on time estimates (not story points) we need the time estimated per subtask to be included in the overall summary.

What's the point in the summary if it's not including absolutely everything assigned to that user?

+1, please allow full functionality for sub-tasks

(my sprint planning takes user stories and breaks it down into subtasks, if after the breakout of work we realize it's too much we may push it to another sprint and split the User Story... without full visablity to the work involved working in JIRA is a nightmare)

 

+1 for to show sub tasks on the backlog/plan view... indented under main story would be nice.. 

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