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How to assign issue to non-jira user?

Hey everyone,

I have a project with an external outsource company, and I want to assign some of the tasks to developers in that company. These users cannot access and will never access our Jira, but I want to assign them the tasks to keep the tasks clear and organized.

How do I do that?


Thanks a lot in advanced!

2 answers

1 accepted

2 votes
Answer accepted

You can't do this.  The assignee field can only work with users.  So if you want to assign an issue to someone, they have to be a user.

Two options spring to my mind (there may well be others) - implement a form of "dummy user" system with other fields (you'd have a user for the assignee field with a name like "please see text field X for the external user"), or create users for these developers, but do NOT put them in the "can log in" group, so they don't actually take up any licences...

When I try to assign cannot log-in user (not in jira-user group), I get an error that this user cannot be assigned issues.... :-( any other ideas? or am I missing something?

Mauro Badii Atlassian Team Nov 27, 2014

has to have Assign Issue permission maybe?

Not quite, but you're on the right lines "Assign issue" permission means "this user can set the assignee field". It's the other one - The assignee field displays all the users that have the "Assignable user" permission for the project selected. Make sure the dummy user is in the group/role/rule for "assignable user". Also, make sure that they are not a "disabled" account.

Like Christophe Chapron likes this

If the user is not "disabled" its being counted as a user with license, and that is what I am trying to avoid...

They should not count if you remove them from the "can log in" group as well.

Do we have an up to date solution for this?

I don't appear to have a 'can log in' group.

It's evolved into an "application access" group.  Check Admin -> Manage Apps to see what group(s) are the "can log in" groups for each application.

The "solution" remains the same - you have to give the person an active account, with "assignable user" permission in the project, in order to assign issues to them

Like Jack Horley likes this
3 votes
Mauro Badii Atlassian Team Nov 27, 2014

The Assignee field is to track who is in charge of the task. If no inside user is in charge of the issue, how is the issue going to progress? Who is in charge?

I suggest creating a Custom field "External Assignee" and fill in that on every issue with the external user or email. It can even be a multiple select option. Then you'll have the real Assignee inside JIRA that controls the "External Asssignees" and transitions issues or contacts them to keep track of them.


This seems a little odd to me. All people/companies (inside/outside) need someone in charge to ensure tasks progress. That is the project manager. But we use the Assignee to track "who" is doing the task, not who is in charge of the task. Even inside users fall under the same argument of "how is the issue going to progress?"

Like Martin Wawrusch likes this

I couldn't agree more. I need to track tasks assigned to our law firm's partners and other outside stakeholders and the proposed solution is a kludge at best. 

Like Steve Poulsen likes this

It's not a "klduge", it's "using software properly".  If you need to assign issues to people and track those issues, then that person should be represented in the tracking system.

So use it properly, give them an account and assign the issues to them.  Don't "kludge", just use it properly.

If you create an External Assignee Field and put in email address; is there any way via some sort of JIRA UI that the external user gets notified? and if they want to update the task, how can they do so?. Looking at Smart sheet as a possible solution since its free licensing, but then we have to buy an integration tool to sync between JIRA and smartsheets; and even that has limitations as far as assignee and syncing attachments. Looking for a JIRA option. Thanks 

No, notifying people you have no permission, audit or security control over is not an acceptable practice.

To amend a task, you absolutely need to be a Jira user in that system.

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