Groups are simple and intuitive - you put users in a group, then you can refer to them via that group. They are global. They have to be maintained by Jira admins, and often become unweildy and outdated.
Roles are more complex - you define a role globally, but the membership of the role is only local to a project. The admins in a project can maintain their own users within that role. They can also use groups to effectively add all the users in a group into the role in that project.
Generally, roles are far better to use - they allow you to delegate the maintenance to project owners, who are best placed to decide who can or can not use their projects. Groups are a lot less flexible and powerful, and really should be used for global stuff ONLY. Such as "can log in", "be an admin"
The wait is over... Portfolio for Jira Server and Data Center 3.0 is now officially here! Platform releases offer Atlassian an opportunity to shift our strategy, make bold predictions about t...
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