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Creating Workflows in Jira

Jira workflows are composed of a set of statuses and transitions that issues move through during their lifecycle. These typically match your work processes within your organization. This article will walk you through creating your own workflows!

The Basics

Workflows are made up of 3 elements:

1. Status (Where): Where the issue is within the workflow

2. Transition (What): The action being taken to move an issue from status to status

3. Resolution (Why): When a task is completed, it needs a resolution status (only available in company-managed projects)

giphy

Keep your workflows SIMPLE and use the workflow editor to make a great diagram.

The workflow editor allows you to create, visualize, and edit the steps and transitions of a workflow.

2023-10-02_09-26-38 (1).gif

Note: you'll need the 'Jira System Administrators' global permission to access the workflow editor.

Workflow Schemes

Different types of work may go through different processes (even in the same team!) Workflow schemes make it easy to set different workflows for different issue types. (Workflow schemes can also be reused in multiple projects!)

For example, your project may include unique workflows for the issue types Story and BugsStories may include feature-related work and use statuses like "New", "In Progress", "In Review", and "Done." Alternately, Bugs likely refer to errors that need to be resolved and may include statuses like "Triaged" and "Fixed." 

Using workflow schemes makes it easy to keep transitions consistent within a project. These schemes can be applied to multiple projects which can also help with consistency for users who work across multiple projects within Jira!

giphy  

Workflow vs. Boards

Workflows are closely related to boards. Jira admins will often match board columns to steps in the project's workflow. 

Teams with more complicated workflows may choose to assign multiple steps from their workflow to one column on their board to keep the board tidy. 🧹

Mapping multiple workflow statuses to one column on a board in Jira Software

 

Ready to dig in more? Check out this Jira guide. 📚

Additional Resources:

5 comments

Prabhu Palanisamy _Onward_
Marketplace Partner
Marketplace Partners provide apps and integrations available on the Atlassian Marketplace that extend the power of Atlassian products.
Oct 02, 2023

HI @Amanda Barber - Thanks for the overview. Do you have a point of view on common limitations of workflow? What are the common usecases that lead to using marketplace apps focused on BPM?

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Amanda Barber
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
Oct 02, 2023

Hi, @Prabhu Palanisamy _Onward_ - I actually have not run into limitations with workflows in Jira Software. My teams use both simple and quite complicated workflows for our boards/tickets. We've had good conversations around why we make changes to ensure the workflows will meet the needs of the teams. 

I don't use any marketplace apps and am unsure what you mean by BPM?

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Yatish Madhav
Rising Star
Rising Star
Rising Stars are recognized for providing high-quality answers to other users. Rising Stars receive a certificate of achievement and are on the path to becoming Community Leaders.
Oct 03, 2023

Thanks for the article @Amanda Barber  - nice intro article to learn about workflows. 

I think we are so deep into advance workflows, WF schemes and issue types that it is tricky to manage them for up to 900 projects, almost 200 workflows, almost 150 workflow schemes - what do you think about using a workflow and workflow scheme per project? I know it might be a nightmare to manage as well but does that affect Jira Cloud performance at all?

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Amanda Barber
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
Oct 03, 2023

Hi, @Yatish Madhav - I don't believe there will be any workflow limits nor any issues with performance with the large number of workflows. On the one hand, it's best practice to make workflows specific to the teams using them, but for organization, I'd definitely work on good naming practices to keep them straight. Alternately, you could try to reuse schemes across projects with similar use cases to limit the complexity in your Jira instance.

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Kristján Geir Mathiesen
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
Oct 06, 2023

Awesome article, @Amanda Barber  Takk for doing it!

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