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How to determinate who can move tasks from the backlog to the Kanban board?

I am learning how to work in Jira and how to configure it to my company's needs and I'm having trouble with some permissions. Is it possible to select a certain group of users in my team to move tasks from the backlog and put them to be worked on the Kanban board? And how can I do it? I've seen that there are some permission issues that you can configure who can do what by their user settings, like administrator or just user, but I do not want to configure it like that, I would like to define between a group of users who can pick tasks from the backlog and put them to be worked on the Kanban board.

Thank you!

1 answer

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Answer accepted

Hi @beatriz_lavechia

The two most common options are:

  • Permission Schemes or...
  • Workflow Transition Conditions

Permission Schemes:

These are useful to limit who can transition issues - this would not just be from the Backlog's status to the board, but also between any other board columns. The permission to limit would be "Transition Issues" - to do this as a Jira Admin:

  1. Go to Jira Settings (cog icon on left-hand navigation bar) > Issues
  2. Scroll down the left-hand list and select Permission Schemes
  3. Locate the permission scheme in use by your project and press Permissions
  4. Find the permission "Transition Issues" and press Edit
  5. Provide access to this permission to a group of users - this could be a project role (set via Users and Roles in the Project Settings) or a group of users (set via User Management in the Jira Admin Settings)
  6. Next press Remove, and remove the old permissions from the permission scheme (eg. "All Logged in Users"), restricting edit access to your assigned group.

Note: If you have multiple projects under one permission scheme - but only want to change permissions for one project, consider pressing Copy first to create a new scheme - then press Permissions and follow the steps from (3).

When creating a new scheme, you'll also need to go to the Project's Settings, locate Permissions in the left-hand menu and in the upper-right corner, press Actions > Use a Different Scheme, changing to your newly created permission scheme.

See more in this page on project permissions, and here on creating groups of users


Workflow Transition Conditions:

If the above is too stringent, you can set a condition within your workflow to only allow a specific set of users to transition between two statuses. This is an additional restriction past the permission scheme - which can be limited to just the transition from Backlog > First Column statuses.

With this approach, I would consider whether "Transition to All" transitions are the best option, as restricting these will stop users moving issues to them from any status (eg. back into the backlog). The other option is a single transition line between the Backlog's status and the first column's status.

To edit the workflow:

  1. Go to Jira Settings > Issues > Workflows (on left-hand panel)
  2. Locate the workflow(s) for your project - if you're not sure which, go to the Workflow Schemes section instead and locate it via the project column, clicking through to the workflow(s).
  3. Click on the transition between your Backlog status and first column's status. This might be a single line, or two separate "All" transitions to the right of each status.
  4. Select Conditions from the pop-up box and press "Add Conditions" in the next screen
  5. Choose a condition - such as Assignee, Reporter, User is in Group, User is in Project Role, etc - and press Add
  6. If choosing "User is in Group" or similar, on the next screen you will pick which group and press Add again

Note: You can have more than one group or project role as conditions. On the main Conditions screen you can choose whether All or Any Conditions need to be met. You can also build more complex versions using the multi-arrow button against each condition (eg. (Condition 1 or Condition 2) and Condition 3 must be met).

More on advanced workflow configuration can be found here.

Let us know if either of these options work :)


Can the workflow transitions solution be done on a team managed Kanban board? I don't think there is a way to see the backlog in a workflow in a team managed project. Additionally, regarding the permission route, is there an alternative to achieving the same outcome on a team managed Kanban board where you don't have "Jira Admin" privilege's but do have the admin role of the project?

Hi @TTadashii-Ching 

Not that I know of, as Team-managed Projects don't use the workflow to control the backlog/board - the backlog is separate to the board itself.

You can limit who can create, start, and stop Sprints using Project Role permissions if this is helpful? You do this via role customisation.

You can customise roles and their permissions via Project Settings > Access > Manage Roles.


Like TTadashii-Ching likes this

@Stephen Wright _Elabor8_ does the Permission Scheme work for team managed Kanban? 

Hi @Sheri Maxim 

Not that I know of, see the comment I posted above yours for the reason why, and alternatives :)


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