Question on usage of Initiatives and Epics for planned and unplanned work

Sridivya Penmetsa April 11, 2024

As a DevOps team, we utilize Initiatives and Epics for our planned work, while labels are used for managing unplanned tasks. Therefore, there are no Epics created for these unplanned items.

The reason behind avoiding the use of Epics for unplanned work was to prevent them from becoming catch-all containers for various bugs or requests originating from different application teams.

I am interested in learning about the recommended practices for utilizing Epics for both planned and unplanned work.

Note: We maintain two Jira boards for our team: one Scrum board for tracking planned work and another Kanban board for managing unplanned tasks, these stories do not fall under any Epic.

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Trudy Claspill
Community Leader
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April 11, 2024

Hello @Sridivya Penmetsa 

Welcome to the Atlassian community.

What is the motivation for changing the way you are currently working? What problem are you trying to solve by considering using Epics for grouping unplanned work?

Sridivya Penmetsa April 12, 2024

Hello @Trudy Claspill 

To better track and organize..

I believe Epics are to encapsulate overarching goals rather than simply grouping similar stories or bugs together. 

However in our organization, there are various opinions regarding their usage, and I am curious about the best practice in this regard.

Sridivya Penmetsa April 16, 2024

Hello @Trudy Claspill could you please suggest what the best approach is to track unplanned work

Trudy Claspill
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 16, 2024

At the moment I don't have a suggestion.

It really depends on the problem you are trying to solve.

"To better track and organize I guess..."

You need to get a better understanding of the problem you are trying to solve first. Otherwise how will you evaluate if the changes you're considering will actually address the problem. 

Why do you need a different way to track and organize the unplanned work? How is the current method not meeting your needs?

If you are just looking for "best practices" information, you can find a lot of that through internet searches. Here's Atlassian's page on the topic of Epics:

https://www.atlassian.com/agile/project-management/epics

And here is one from my own employer Praecipio, an Atlassian Platinum Solution Partner.

https://www.praecipio.com/resources/articles/best-practices-for-jira-epics

Sridivya Penmetsa April 18, 2024

Thank you very much for the information.

I will review this with our team and post if we have any additional queries

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