Is it possible to have more than 3 types within a hierarchy?

Lewis Rafferty April 13, 2024

At the moment we have our project setup as the default Epic > Story > Subtask.

Ideally we'd like to have an additional option within this structure like such;

Epic
Content Feature
Bug / Tasks
Subtasks

From what I can tell because Epic and Subtask is not configurable, I would be unable to put another in-between the two? 

Is this possible?

5 answers

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2 votes
Answer accepted
Ste Wright
Community Leader
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April 13, 2024

Hi @Lewis Rafferty 

This is how I'd do it; I've included the additional steps to resolve the current issues in your last screenshot.

---

First, fix the existing hierarchy...

  1. Remove Level 3 - Tasks & Bugs - I assume this should be in Level 0, i.e Story
  2. Remove Level 2 (assuming this won't break any existing data) - we'll re-add it below

Next, for Issue Types...

  1. Go to Settings > Issue types
  2. Locate the "Content Feature" issue type
  3. Select the breadcrumbs (...) on the right-hand side of the row, and select Delete
  4. Follow the steps to delete this issue type
  5. Next, locate the default "Epic" issue type (i.e the one assigned to Level 1 now)
  6. Select the breadcrumbs (...) on the right-hand side of the row, and select Edit
  7. Change the name to "Content Feature", and change the icon if preferred
  8. Next, select the Add issue type button
  9. Create a new Epic issue type - called Epic (rather than "Epics")

Note: You can also delete "Epics", it's not needed

Then, for the Issue Type Hierarchy...

  1. Select Issue type hierarchy from the left-hand menu
  2. Change the name of Level 1 to "Content Feature" - this should also now be mapped to an Issue Type with the same name
  3. Add a new level above Level 1, named Epic
  4. Map your new "Epic" issue type to this level
  5. Save changes

---

I've assumed you want all Projects to use this new hierarchy - you'd only need to do what you've done already if you intend to run two separate hierarchies - i.e

  • Some Projects using Task > Content Feature > Epic
  • Others using Task > Epic > ...

^ I do think this can get confusing though, and it's better to seek a hierarchy which works for all teams, or at least a majority.

Ste

 

 

Lewis Rafferty April 14, 2024

Hi Stephen, 

Thanks for sending this over - I have followed your step provided above and seem to have made some progress, however still not quite how we'd like the configuration. 

Here is the new hierarchy, which I assume is correct?

epic-hierarchy.PNG

On the project side however, we're still seeing some of the same issues - for example now the "Epic" section on the project has become content feature (which would be expected) 

epic-becomes-content-feature.PNG

Specifically in the timeline view, when creating an issue it wants to create it as a content feature, and when trying to create an epic we get the following message; 

epic-parent.PNG

Also in the timeline view it nests it as follows and disregards the "Epic" level above.

timeline-view.PNG

If I try to use another view such as a list view, it appears as we would like. 

nested-issues.PNG

Is it possible to get it to view like this in the timeline view and have "Epic" as the primary issue and show anything under this? 

Thank you for your help with this!

Ste Wright
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
April 14, 2024

Hi @Lewis Rafferty 

Your first screenshot appears to be set up correctly, based on my instructions.

The Timeline on a Board only works with the standard hierarchy - i.e Epic > Story > Sub-task. You cannot display the additional levels within this feature

The wording for "Epic" is then flexible - so changing it to Content Feature means that is the Issue Type which will now work from within the Timeline. 

---

If you want a view with the additional layers, you'll need to use Plans for this. These are the "advanced" planning features, available through Plans on the top navigation bar.

See more information on this help page: https://support.atlassian.com/jira-software-cloud/docs/what-is-advanced-roadmaps/

Ste

 

Lewis Rafferty April 14, 2024

Great, thanks! That helps a lot - I'll pass this over to the wider team and let them know.

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2 votes
John Funk
Community Leader
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April 13, 2024

Hi Lewis - Welcome to the Atlassian Community!

Yes, that's possible with the Premium subscription that you have. But just a little tricky

Go to Settings > Issue > Issue Types.

  • Create a Content Feature issue type. 

Go to Settings > Issues > Issue Type Hierarchy

  • Rename current Level 1 name from Epic to Content Feature 
  • Click the Epic dropdown in the Jira Issue Types field and select Content Feature 
  • Go back to Issue Types menu option and create an Epic issue type 
  • Come back to Issue Type Hierarchy menu option 
  • Add Epic as Level 2 in hierarchy 
  • Save Changes 
Lewis Rafferty April 13, 2024

Thanks, John!

I created an Epic type, and it works in a sense. 

The Jira default epic is greyed out to remove from Level 1 and the "Epic" I made doesn't seem to play well with the project itself. 

When in the project it says there is no epic configured in the timeline view and when trying to create an issue it only shows the issue type for story.

Is this something I am doing wrong?

Thanks!

John Funk
Community Leader
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April 13, 2024

Did you follow my steps above exactly? 

Can you share a screen shot?

Lewis Rafferty April 13, 2024

Hi John, 

I did, I tried doing this yesterday and I think I have the configuration right.

Here is a screenshot of our Hierarchy field.

epic-hierarchy.PNG

Thanks!

Lewis Rafferty April 13, 2024

Please ignore the tasks & bugs section, this needs moving from its current position.

John Funk
Community Leader
Community Leader
Community Leaders are connectors, ambassadors, and mentors. On the online community, they serve as thought leaders, product experts, and moderators.
April 13, 2024

Yeah, that's not correct. You need to remove the Content Feature issue type from Level 1

And remove the Level 2 and Level 3

Then start over with my steps above. You should not have two Issue Types at Level 1.

Like Carlos Garcia Navarro likes this
0 votes
Hannes Obweger - JXL for Jira
Marketplace Partner
Marketplace Partners provide apps and integrations available on the Atlassian Marketplace that extend the power of Atlassian products.
April 15, 2024

Hi @Lewis Rafferty

as you've seen from the previous answers, modelling your exact hierarchy is a bit tricky, since Jira's default hierarchy levels (i.g., epic / base task / sub-task) are somewhat fixed and have certain semantics, e.g. in how issues are shown in the Jira Software backlog, etc. 

Just as food for thought: Another option would be to use issue links, which give you full flexibility on how you connect two issues to each other. The downside is that Jira doesn't really "recognise" issue links as parent/child relationships - there are, however, various hierarchy-focused apps on the Atlassian Marketplace that can do so.

As an example, this is how how this could look using the app that my team and I are working on, JXL for Jira:

epic-story-task-sub-task-hierarchy.gif

(I'm using an Epic/Story/Task/Sub-task hierarchy here, but it would work the same for the hierarchy you have in mind.)

For context, JXL is a full-fledged spreadsheet/table view for your issues that allows viewing, inline-editing, sorting, and filtering by all your issue fields, much like you’d do in e.g. Excel or Google Sheets. It also comes with a number of advanced features, including support for (configurable) issue hierarchies. These issue hierarchies can be based on Jira's built-in parent/child relationships (like task/sub-task, or epic/story), and/or based on issue link of configurable issue link types.

Any questions just let me know,

Best,

Hannes

0 votes
waqas Wilan2026 April 13, 2024

Yes, it's absolutely possible to have more than three types within a hierarchy. Hierarchies can be as shallow or deep as needed, with each level potentially containing multiple types or categories.

For example, consider a simple hierarchical structure representing a company:

- Level 1: Departments (e.g., Sales, Marketing, Finance)
- Level 2: Teams within each department (e.g., Sales: Inside Sales, Outside Sales)
- Level 3: Roles within each team (e.g., Inside Sales: Sales Representative, Sales Manager)

In this example, there are multiple types (departments, teams, roles) within the hierarchy, and each type can have its own set of subtypes or categories.

The number of types within a hierarchy depends on the specific organizational or conceptual structure being represented and can vary widely based on the complexity and granularity required for a particular domain or use case.

0 votes
Sreenivasaraju P
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April 13, 2024

Hi @Lewis Rafferty ,

You can configure your issue type hierarchy in Jira Software Cloud Premium and Enterprise.

Have you tried Creating a new hierarchy level.

Please refer below link for details. 

https://support.atlassian.com/jira-cloud-administration/docs/configure-the-issue-type-hierarchy/

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