Using JIRA to manage technical change management (TCMS)

Hello,

My company is evaluating JIRA to manage our producing facility / Asset technical change management process, part of our process will also need to integrate with our SAP application master data.

Has anyone else used JIRA to do this?

Kind Regards

NC

4 answers

Can you be more specific about what you're looking for? We might have better luck coming up with examples... Where I work, we originally used JIRA just to manage software projects, but are now using it to manage activities across multiple diverse departments (R&D, support, etc.). We've integrated it with both our ERP system and doc management systems. My experience is that JIRA can be bent to manage nearly any process that can be broken down into an "issue".

Hi Jason,

Thanks for your response. I would like to know more about your integration by any chance are you going to Summit?

Regards

Noelene

I wish! Unfortunately, I couldn't get a Summit trip in the budget this year.

I can tell you that our ERP integration is fairly light - we're using the Kepler database custom field plugin to retrieve & display information on parts from our ERP's MSSQL database. The ERP does allow for some fairly complex interaction by trading xml files, but it's complicated and we haven't needed it (yet).

The doc management integration is more extensive - we're essentially using it to hold attachments rather than JIRA. This allows us to share documents with internal and external resources who don't need to interact with JIRA. M-Files (our doc system) has a decent REST interface, so I use script runner to execute groovy scripted post-functions to push the attachments over and then link them back to the JIRA issue.

Sorry to hear you are not attending summit, could you tell me more about your xml functionality?

What you have done to date sounds great, we just have edocs DMS url links displayed in JIRA (user attaches record id number and the link is automatically created) but still use JIRA out of the box attachment function for external users.

Our ERP system (Epicor) has a feature called Service Connect. With this feature, we can drop xml files (or csv) into a special folder. Epicor can pick up and process these files to perform most functions rather than going through the user interface. We're not using this with JIRA yet, but we have used it to integrate Epicor with other systems (doc management, an engineering PLM tool, etc.).

Eventually when I get our support teams more fully into JIRA, I intend to use JIRA + groovy scripted post-functions to drop xml files (populated with data from JIRA fields) where Service Connect can pick them up. I don't have the details yet on what the support teams need, but that will probably be the general approach when they are ready to move.

Good Luck with your plans Jason, appreciate you taking the time to respond to my question.

Kind Regards

Noelene

Jason,

I have just seen this post and I am about to embark on using the REST capabilities of Epicor Service Connect with Jira.  So far not too much luck but it is early days. 

I know your posts are pretty old so, I was wondering how you progressed with your integration.

Cheers

Simon Hall

Hi Simon,

We've gone a long way down the path of surfacing information that lives in Epicor 9.05 through JIRA.  So for example, our finance group asked for a way to track progress and keep notes on accounts receivable that are in Epicor.  We came up with a little scheduled task that periodically runs straight T-SQL queries against the Epicor DB and creates a new issue in JIRA to represent each AR.  As a bonus, if the AR is closed in Epicor, the matching issue is closed in JIRA. 

We've done several of these apps, pulling from Epicor, Salesforce, and other systems to make it possible for managers to plan and track work in JIRA.  Of course, this is all pretty one-way... JIRA can see into Epicor, but we haven't been pushing any data back into Epicor.  I'm sure we could (it'd be really easy using Epicor Service Connect), but we just haven't had the need.

Don't know if it helps, but I'd be happy to share our code with you if you're interested.  I'm always looking for others using JIRA for tracking work other than software development - particularly in manufacturing organizations.

 

Jason

Jason,

I appreciate your response and further information. I would be really interested in taking a look at your code. 

We are a software company, so as far as manufacturing goes, you could say we manufacture software…….

What I have found so far with Service Connect and talking with Epicor is the fact that at this stage it only encodes in base64 not UTF8, not to mention it can only use http to import RESTful references.  Which makes importing Jira references near on impossible if you are using Jira Cloud. Epicor have raised an SCR on the https capabilities and I am hoping they resolve the different encoding capabilities, but I sort of understand why Epicor use base64.

I am faced at this stage to create my own custom .Net assemblies to get what I need to work, so any example code would be useful.

We are in fact wanting to go the other way, getting Epicor to see into Jira, with some possible two way integration. Our particular focus is worklog/time information, at the moment we have a group of users that work exclusively in Jira and we need to capture time for billable projects that are managed in Epicor.  These projects are primarily, maintenance support and Professional Services type project

Just wondering if you use https://e10help.com/?  It used to be Vantage forums on Yahoo, but they have moved everything to e10help.com as a new forum.  There is a big community of Epicor users in the manufacturing space there.

Simon

Hi Simon,

Very interesting!  We also are interested in pushing worklogs into Epicor.  Haven't done anything like that yet, but would be willing to work with you on it. 

I don't use e10help, but I'm sure our Epicor analysts do!  Epicor is actually a pretty common ERP system for manufacturers - however, I've found comparatively few manufacturers using JIRA.  Based on our experience, I'm convinced JIRA offers significant value for manufacturers, but I'd really like to see how others are solving the types of problems we run into.

If you want to see the database record-to-JIRA issue code (and possibly collaborate a bit on the worklog push), please contact me directly by email at my firstname dot my lastname at rajetechnology dot com.

 

Thanks,

Jason

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