How to test JIRA project settings and workflow changes

Can anyone suggest a good methodology for testing a change to a JIRA workflow or other project setting before making those changes available to everyone?  I administer a JIRA Cloud project.  When I make an enhancement or change to our workflow or project component, I want to be able to test it to know if it is working as intended before making it available to everyone.  Yes, just like software testing to verify changes before making available in "production".

What is the easiest way to have a test copy of my entire JIRA project inclusive of Workflows, Schemes, Screens, Fields?  Do I have to manualy create a new test project, save test copies of all the components/schemes that I may want to change and test first and then have to set those in my test project inclusive of a test workflow based on my production workflow, Test Screens, Test Fields, etc?

Seems like a lot of manual work to manage.  Is there an easier way?

I was surprised that searches have basically come up empty in looking for existing discussion.  Thank you to anyone who may be willing to offer suggestions or guidance!


5 answers

1 accepted

1 vote
Accepted answer
Jeremy Atlassian Community Champion Jun 15, 2017

Dear Douglas,

JIRA does not offer the functionality of copying a project. JIRA does however have the possibility of sharing the configurations of a project when you are creating a new project. Although, since the configuration is shared.. anything you adjust will also be editted on the project that shares the configuration with your new project. 

You will have to copy existing schemes to your new project under a new name and share it only with that project. A new test project. I have seen this in multiple JIRA instances, when there was no test environment available. Usually, you would have a JIRA production and a JIRA test environment, where you could make such changes and thus save the hassle of creating another project.

Friendly Regards,

Jeremy Mooiman


I am interested in this part of the question. "Can anyone suggest a good methodology for testing a change to a JIRA workflow or other project setting before making those changes available to everyone?" Is there a way to have automated tests to see if you broke something in your workflows when you make a change. 

Hi Jeremy,

Much appricition for taking the time.  I was afraid this might be the case.  More manual work than I'd like having to make second test copies of everything for a new project but looks like there's no way around it.  

Can you remind me how to copy something like a workflow?  Do I simply edit it and publish it as another name like "Test Copy of..."?  Or is there some way to copy without publishing?

Kind regards,

To add a bit of understanding to my question - I have created a test copy of my Worklow Scheme used by my Project in production.  The thing is, the Worklow listed with the copy is the same workflow used in production.  Is that really a "Copy" of the workflow or the Same workflow?  If it's the same, how would I copy the workflow so that changes in test don't get applied to production?  Thank you!

I am encountering a similar issue as OP. Whenever I make a copy of an existing workflow or board, any changes I make to the copy, modifies the parent. This does not seem like a true copy. Am I missing something?


Bump.  I am looking for the same guidance.  I need to build out and test a new workflow, schemes, and screens, then want to apply the tested changes to my existing projects.

Have there been any new developments in Jira that better support testing since July 2017?



I am confronted to a similar issue... Just became global admin of a JIRA instance with an important workload. 
The existing tests are only manual UI tests, therefore very long to do and have limited coverage.
My main challenges are :
- to find a way to deploy in production without having to manually copy the settings from the test environment/instance

- to automate testing

Here are the few solutions I've found :
For deployments:
1. Develop on a copy project in the production instance than apply the schemes to the actual project.
Though, I worrying this may break workflows or issue references/fields.
I also worry about doubling the size of JIRA instance.

Any thoughts on the matter? 

2. Develop on a development instance using the JIRA REST API to configure the settings than deploy to the production instance again with the JIRA REST API. 
This seems like an nice option, but the REST API doesn`t allow full access to the configurations.

Any thoughts on the matter? 

3. Develop our own in house plugin with the JIRA API and develop on the development than deploy configurations to the production instance.
This would probably be the most robust solution, but seems like a lot of work and I think some plugins already do that.

Any thoughts on the matter? 

For testing:

1. Use the JIRA REST API to validate configurations haven`t changed after an JIRA/Add-ons update (as they tend to do) and use it to test the workflows/validators/conditions/post-functions by transitioning test issues.

Any thoughts?

2. Use a plugin.

Any plugin suggestion?

*We haven`t decided which way we are going to take yet and so we haven`t fully testing those solutions.

Thank you.

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