jira orginal estimate task and subtasks - extended question


I have a follow-up question according to this discussion: https://answers.atlassian.com/questions/28328/jira-and-sub-tasks

There is this answer from Nic Brough:


If you want to get the report to say 2 hours, you need to make the estimate for the top-level issue 2 hours. Your options here are

  1. Remove the 2 hour estimate from the top level issue
  2. Remove the estimates from the subtasks
  3. Move the subtasks out, as they're not supposed to be included


Now my question is, what is the most convenient way to achieve point 1 automatically with JIRA/Greenhopper?

Little explanation of the usage scenario:

At the beginning Stories are created and roughly estimated. At some point in the future maybe Subtask are created for that Story to specify the work to be done in more detail. These Subtask get their own estimates, but most likely these estimates were part of the orginal estimate of the Story. Hence the latter one needs to be reduced accordingly. And it would be fine to get this done automatically.

2 answers

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Answer accepted

The way I have been managing it is to only give an original estimate to the parent tasks, but no remaining. The subtasks have a remaining estimate, but no Original estimate. This way, the parent tasks show on the Rapid planning board correctly, and the Rapid burndown chart also is correct. I am hoping that Atlassian can figure something else out to make this use case easier to manage.

This is actually exactly how we envisaged it working... you apply an original estimate at the story level, then you use remaining estimates on subtasks for the burndown. Note that it doesn't matter if the subtasks have an original estimate or a remaining estimate specified (when one is entered the other is automatically filled by JIRA if it is empty).

So I'd suggest the simple process:

  • Estimate stories using original time estimate if you wish (the sum of the original estimates at JUST the story level will show on the sprint footer)
  • Estimate sub tasks using remaining time estimate (this time won't affect the sprint footer total but will be used in the burndown)


Hi Shaun,

I'm trying to do exactly what you described (provide an Original Estimate, while leaving the Remaining Estimate empty until Subtasks can be created), but when I submit an Original Estimate to a parent issue it autofills that value as the Remaining Estimate. I can get around this by setting Remaining Estimate to 0; that way the Remaining Estimate will always be a representation of the SubTask aggregate, however then I'm left with the Parent issue looking like no more work is required (prior to the subtasks being created).

Is there a setting I can change to decouple the Remaining estimate from the Original estimate when I'm first submitting the Original Estimate? Or is there something else I can do?



Hi in regard to this has the working of the original estimate of parent task and remaining estimate of subtask documented in jira documentation? Since we wanted a link to the extract so that we could explain it to our team members that this is the intended behaviour of jira.

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