How do I enable the burndown chart to track in smaller increments?

Which 'denomination', or combination of, do I use. Out of Epics, Stories and sub-tasks.

When I have 2 stoies in a sprint, the Burndown chart only changes towards the end as the stories are set to "Done". I wish to split these stories in to smaller parts. It seems sub-taks don't have story points that are rolled up tp the story total (correct?). And Epics (with sub-stories) are probably too big for just one sprint (acording to Scrum guidelines). Any recomendations so I can track the burndown in smaller increments? Work is being done daily and 'jobs' finished, or rather features are ready to ready to release.

Another example, if there is one story in a sprint with 20 sub-tasks, the burndown chart only tracks when the story is set to "Done" not each of the sub-taks. Although there may be a sub-task completed daily.

I am favouring making the stories in to epics, and having sub-stories.

What is your advice?

Thank you.

6 answers


Its been a long time, but this question is still un-answered. 

To put it simple: Can a sub-task have story points, so that it can be tracked on the burn-down chart?



Hi Steve,

I have the very same problem, and I'm looking for the answer, but I can't get one here or anywhere else.

Best regards


PS. "It seems sub-taks don't have story points that are rolled up to the story total"

yes, that's correct.

Workaround for a shortfall in Jira is to make stories Epics, sub-tasks into stories.

Then you can allocate the ex-sub-tasks story points, and there is more granualrity in the burndown chart.

Poor countermeasure to a disappointing feature set in Jira.

Epic hierarchy feature was available in old greenhopper but is now not available in Jira Agile. However there is a wonderful plugin called Structure that is even better and allows n-deep Epic hierarchies and aggregates at each node.

Hello Greg,

Thank you for sharing - that's very helpful.

I have an additional issue, which may be resolved by using the Structure plugin...
That is, I'm unable visualize assignee name on the Scrum Board plan view (which is available in the Classic view).
...unless you know different.

Thanks again,

I agree, I want some way to track progress as sub-tasks are completed, not just stories.


We are using JIRA Cloud and this problem of not being able to track progress using story points is a very frustrating thing. You can enable story points to come up in sub-tasks at estimation time by enabling what issue types must have story-point. Go to Admin -> Custom fields -> Story Points -> Custom field.

Then select sub-task also as a issue type of Story Points.

But after doing all this we cannot track the progress. We cannot update the remaining story points for a sub-task nor it adds all the remaining story points in sub-tasks to the main user story. The way to do is to put work progress in hours and that is a stupid way.

We are actually thinking of moving away of JIRA mainly due to not being able to use the SCRUM process properly. It takes so much pain to just to get things configured and still it does not work. JIRA starting off as a issue tracking tool and now trying to incorporate Agile cos people demand it seems to mess up the whole software experience of JIRA.


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