jira software best practice (general tips)

Hi guys,

I moved from a company with a large chaotic JIRA instance to a new company that is just starting to use Jira. I have the opportunity to "build JIRA right" from the very beginning – very exciting! 

That said, while I've been an admin for several years, I am looking for tips on best practice give the following requirements from my company:

-- Metrics and Reporting are important. Need to capture Original Estimate, time spent, etc., Need to be able to plot this in Burn down charts in Agile.

-- Screens and flows should be as streamlined as possible. Don't want issue management to be more burdensome than the actual work we are tracking! 

Here are my initial thoughts:

  1. Make time tracking required – from what I understand, this will make the burn charts work correctly in Agile.
  2. Limit the number of admins in the system (don't want too many chefs)
  3. Establish early on a few templates for project types – and actually stick to the templates
  4. Limit the number of custom fields, and leverage context instead of redundant fields. 

Any other tips? Plugin suggestions, or sharing similar experiences are welcome too. The focus again is ease of use and heavy use of metrics and reporting. 

We will be tying into other JIRA software instances, confluence, hipchat, bit bucket, crowd.  (If that helps). 



1 answer

5 votes
  • Use roles in your permissions, notifications and so-on, not groups
  • Get the permissions right first time - have a group for "can use JIRA" but don't use it in projects by default
  • Use roles
  • Set up a JIRA Maintenance/Request project and don't change config without an issue to cover it.  It's quite nice knowing that I can come back from a holiday, find a new field has appeared and go find the requestor and the admin who did it
  • Use roles
  • Monitor and housekeep it
  • Agree on and set the time tracking options as soon as
  • Have a test system which people can play with (doesn't need to be identical, but refresh it now and then, and test upgrades and changes that you aren't 100% sure of)
  • Don't use "delete" in permissions unless you really trust the people who might be in that role to use it carefully and infrequently
  • Install the JIRA Toolkit, Suite Utilities, Calendar and Charting add-ons.  Talk to your stakeholders about others, especially reporting ones
  • You'll be using JIRA Software, as you mention Agile, consider converting your more Agile projects to use "simplified workflow" so the project owners can handle their own flows.  Might be a non-starter for your company, but if they do take ownership, it lowers the admin burden and keeps their projects simple

I'm sure there's more, especially expanding into add-ons for reporting, but I'm curious to see what other people here might add, so I'll shut up for now. wink

Great tips @Nic Brough [Adaptavist] - got any more?

  • Use roles
  • Get people to understand how Scrum works (rather than inherit the failures of other systems who don't quite get it, like estimates on sub-tasks.  Many systems give in to the failure to understand it.  Jira does it properly, but then ignores all the questions)
  • Use roles
  • As an admin, push back on "fielditis"
  • Use roles
  • Remember that Selfridge is always quoted out of context.  Your "customers" are usually wrong, not right.  Question them as to why they seem to want to do dumb things - they mostly don't want to be dumb, but don't know better.  Explore that, always.
  • Use roles

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