I've been avoiding this, because I don't think I'm going to like the answer, but here we go. I'm going to not use the typical terminology here because I don't want to mislead anybody by using an incorrect term.
Like the rest of the world, we have things to do - an activity - and then have numerous components of those activities - functions. An activity - or a function - can span numerous weeks / iterations / sprints as things go back and forth with a client, thru various QA and user acceptance testing.
Let's say I need to upgrade 25 seperate clients, each on their own hosted system. I want a master activity, and 25 subordinate activities. I have a filter which lets me see the master activity and the 25 subordinate activities.
Now, I understand that subordinate tasks cannot not be independently included in a sprint (although they certainly are in the real world.) Atlassian's approach of using an Epic issue type is fine - but the linkage to individual issues seems very loose to me; it would be much better to use the issue/subtask paradigm, but I can't seem to figure out if I'm not doing it right - or it doesn't work that way. The concept of having subtasks of an Epic - which I seem to be able to do - is inherently contradictory.
What am I doing incorrectly - or is this an Atlassian "do it my way" kind of thing, using the shield of "that's the way agile is done?" I feel like I run into that barricade numerous times per year, and then we work around the limitations of the product. (don't get me started on "well, you can vote for [feature].")
Forgot to add: we use templates extensively here to streamline operations. So I'll have an activity we do 50 times a year - an issue with subtasks. If I clone that issue, I'm good to go - because all the subtasks clone. If I clone an epic issue with Epic links - I get to, manually, relink everything, which does wonders for my efficiency. But if I keep them as subtasks...I can't put them in a sprint.
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