Is it possible to create a project or some other way to house other projects together?
We have 20 projects that all sit within one department, and are looking to add different departments into our Jira instance who will have their own projects so want to put these under seperate group. Can Jira do this?
Not really, projects are all equal and separate entities.
The best you can do is use project categories I think. It doesn't do much, you just select one category for each project, and it'll tab them up by group in the list of projects. Most people use it for departments. Since Jira 4, you've also been able to run queries like "category = <department x>" so you can go across a category, but that's about it.
Unfortunately there isn't a concept of sub-projects within the projects in JIRA. However, Components in Jira can act as the sub-projects within your project. You'll be able to organize the sub-projects with the help of these Components by assigning the lead to each component as well.
Hope this helps.
You could actually.
Add a new component in the target project. Run a filter for "all issues in the source project" and then bulk-move the whole lot into the new project, then edit them to add the new component.
The problem with this approach is that you have to use the project in the same way, you can't have different workflows, permissions and so-on.
This is the opposite to my answer - it descends into the projects rather than grouping them. It's a perfectly valid approach as well. Both my and Naren's answers are theoretical, and the best option for you really depends on how you want to work with Jira.
It depends what you mean by a project. In JIRA project is a container for issues/tickets. If a project is only creating and resolving an issue then you might use issue types as a sub-projects. Then every project will be a issue type. However if you would like to have in every project a structure that holds bugs, new features, requirements that is not easily possible.
You can still hoever use only one JIRA project for whole department and have all of those issue types but then another custom field is required that will filter issues from different projects.
New bug is created with a value "A" in a custom field called "Project:" ..
After that you will know that this bug is related to Project A.
Adding new project could be easy and adding new departments, but of course this is only for projects that are not complex or having the same workflow..
Everything depends on what you want to achieve and how this could work.
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