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Jira query to show statuses of Initiative and Epic issues


My organization recently migrated to Jira Software and has set up a project to act as a portfolio overview of our Initiatives.

We're trying to set up a query that will allow us to see the status of the SAFe Initiative issue, and the status of the Epic which is used for Intake tracking purposes. 


Below is an example of how the Initiative issue type columns/statuses map to the Epic issue type workflow/statuses.



The Epic issues are linked into the Initiatives with a 'is blocked by' relationship. What we are trying to do is create a query that shows the status of Initiative and the status of the linked Epic so we can verify they are in the correct statuses in accordance with the graphic above.

We've tried using ScriptRunner and the standard-issue search in Jira and have been unable to show the statuses between both issues on a single report. Any feedback/thoughts on how we can accomplish this would be extremely helpful.

5 answers

Hi, @Wolf, George.  AFAIK there's no way to do what you describe with out-of-the-box Jira, unless you are using Jira Cloud Premium, which includes Advanced Roadmaps from Atlassian. If you have premium, try using it for this use case. (Perhaps you are already using it, as @Kristian Walker (Adaptavist) guessed?)

If you don't have premium the other option, as @Anna-BigPicture hints, is to explore Atlassian Marketplace and look for Jira apps that will address your use case. Her company's products will — but there are many more that will, too.

I'd suggest a search like:

This search shows the top-rated apps for Jira on hosting = Cloud that help you manage dependencies.  I'm sure you get the idea.

-dave [ALM Works]

P.S. Full disclosure, an ALM Works product will show up in those search results. But only you can decide which apps you may wish to consider.

2 votes
Anna-BigPicture Marketplace Partner Jun 17, 2021

Hi @Wolf, George

Taking into account your requirements, BigPicture seems to be a good match! Let me add a few words in case you would be interested in a 3rd party plugin.

You can use BigPicture to prepare your project schedule, visualize dependencies, track the execution, and generate reports by aggregating your task data. To measure the progress not only on a single task level but also on a project or its phases level, the plugin gives you the possibility to aggregate data of statuses, progress, and Time tracking.

You can create any Work Breakdown Structure (SAFe structure included) based on the “blocked by” and truck the progress on various levels.

Moreover, please consider the advantages of the graphical representation of these dependencies on the timeline.
See my exemplary image and let me know if you have further questions.

image - 2021-06-17T153042.436.png

Hi George,

Thank you for your response.

I can confirm that ScriptRunner for Jira Cloud is unable to provide a query to query below Iniative issues as we do not provide any Enhanced Search functions for Jira Portfolio(Advanced Roadmaps).

However, I can confirm Atlassian do provide some JQL functions natively in Jira as mentioned here which you may be able to use to help write the JQL query that you require.

I hope this information helps.



With standard JQL you can only search for child issues of particular initiatives when you know what the issue key is. It's only good for one off jobs.

Standard JQL doesn't easily allow it but dynamic results can be quickly found using our professional indexing service JQL Search Extensions.

You can find epics in your initiatives with this sample query:

issue in childrenOfIssuesInQuery("project in ('ACME', 'DEV') and type=Initiative")

There is also support for showing all the issues under your initiative recursively and support for advanced linking scenarios. Have a look at our docs.

I hope this helps to solve your problem. Let me know if you have any questions.


0 votes
Rahul_RVS_Support Marketplace Partner Jun 17, 2021

Hi @Wolf, George 

As an alternative, you may want to try out our add-on to visualize your dependencies and their progress on a single screen.

Agile Tools - Epic Tree and Time in Status 

Key features of the add-on are:

  • Links Hierarchy and sum of time estimates and story points at each level
  • Configure progress % calculation on either "remaining estimate" or "original estimates"
  • Real time edit option for Issue summary, status, time estimates, story points and assignee on the tree
  • Choice of fields to display on the report, including custom fields
  • Custom Fields roll up
  • JQL support

Along with this, you also get Epic Sum Up (standard Epic -> Story -> Subtask) and Multiple Time in Status reports (to track your issues) in this add-on.


Links Hierarchy.png



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