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How does Team Central relate to the other Atlassian products?

Rob Horan Community Leader May 05, 2021


I have been trying to get started with Team Central and quite frankly I'm not sure of where to begin or what the terminology means in context, so I apologize for the barrage of questions, but I'm having a difficult time understanding what this tool is used for. Is there a product guide that explains what all the concepts are, and how this tool fits into the overall Atlassian suite?

For example, until Team Central, I KNEW what a project was.  A project was a collection of issues in Jira. So.... what's a Team Central project?  Does it relate to Jira at all?  What does 'project' mean when looking at the two products?

How do projects and goals work together?  What is the hierarchy?   How are goals and sub-goals different from issues in Jira?

How does this product relate to my site(s)?  With Jira and Confluence the product is tied to a particular site, but TC seems global in ways that I don't understand.  For example, I do work for multiple clients.  I was invited to Team Central by my supervisor.  Within a project, when I click on related links, instead of seeing issues from our Jira instance i am seeing issues from a client's site.  So - what should I expect to see in Related links?  Does it just collect issues from the various sites and organizations we have access to?

What does TC provide that Confluence does not?  How would TC be used with Confluence?


My humble 2c.

TC function is mainly for cross team updates on project activity, like a hub. Project in this case can be understood as initiative (or effort) which spans multiple teams, where each team tracks work in own separate Jira projects. Also this is primarily target smaller teams and organizations. For mid/large org I think Advanced Roadmaps (ex. Portfolio) would be better suited (or Jira Align).

I think that lack of strict concepts and terminology is to demonstrate flexibility so teams can define those on their own once they see a fit.

One good thing is that TC can replace few add-ons (e.g. UpRaise or custom cross-team reporting and visualization). But then again TC would work on a certain scale only (small or mid size orgs).

You can look at goals as OKRs and sub-goals as smaller parts of a bigger OKR (reduced abstraction for certain teams to understand better).

Major TC function is to tie loose ends which could span multiple sites, orgs, clients into one central place for better visibility, tracking and comms. Really basic, really simple. Once team gets used to this, then it will allow to look into more complex tooling and transition would be easier too.

Hope this makes sense (as it does for me).

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Rob Horan Community Leader May 05, 2021

Hi @Vilius Zigmantas - this helps a little, so thank you - but while this gives an overview of what projects and goals are, I'm still not understanding how this fits in with the Atlassian suite, and more concerningly, why I am seeing content from every organization my user is associated with.

I think it would be great to see a video with an illustrated use case to get some real context into how this is used.  I see some videos here and there which dive into specific topics, but nothing that shows the end to end process.

And that's not directed towards you - I just mean from Atlassian - there's just no quickstart guide, so... I dunno, I'm just having a hard time trying to come up with a simple use case to evaluate this tool in the most basic of ways. 

Rob, no problem. I share your sentiment. At this point product is still young and tries to find its purpose in life 😃. Also this is line with Atlassian way - throw something against the wall and see what sticks.

It is OK if you don't immediately see the fit, maybe it is for someone else. I sense that this is definitely not targeting software teams (you know geeks with structured and disciplined things in mind), instead this is for business teams which are more flexible (and usually should be) - marketing, sales, research, workplace ops, etc.

Simi Shaheed Atlassian Team May 05, 2021

Hi @Rob Horan 👋  Thanks for the feedback and questions - we're currently working on articles for many of them, so you should see them popping up in Community when they're done! But for now, I'll run through them here.

For some background on the problems Team Central can solve for your team beyond our other products, here's a 90 second intro video (if you haven't seen it already) to help set the stage.

Jira 'projects' vs Team Central 'projects'
Team Central projects are aimed at improving communication and updates to stakeholders outside of your immediate team. So your Jira project still exists for those actively working on issues, while those who follow your Team Central project get a concise weekly update about the status of what it is you're working on. 

How do projects and goals work together?  What is the hierarchy? 
I recorded a walkthrough of one of our projects that describes the relationship for an example we worked on, you can have a watch here. 

How does this product relate to my site(s)?
Team Central is connected to a site, like Jira and Confluence. But in cases where someone has access to multiple Team Central workspaces (because they have access to Team Central in multiple sites) you will see updates and projects from all the workspaces you are a part of in one feed. To switch between the workspaces, you may need to click into your other cloud instance via the app switcher in the top left. We're actively thinking about how to improve this experience at the moment!

Hopefully that helps in the meantime, but curious if there's more that I haven't been able to clear up?

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Rob Horan Community Leader May 05, 2021

Thank you @Simi Shaheed !

In my case, only my organization has Team Central access, but strangely I see NO tickets from my own site.  However, I am seeing Jira tickets from client sites who definitely do not have Team Central access.

Simi Shaheed Atlassian Team May 05, 2021

Oh I see! I'll double check the expected behaviour with development on this one!

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Rob Horan Community Leader May 06, 2021

@Simi Shaheed- thank you!

Simi Shaheed Atlassian Team May 06, 2021

@Rob Horan I've confirmed with engineering, and here's how "Related links" works:

This “recently viewed items” in that dropdown is personal to you - and thus will return links from any sites you have access to. Likewise, other users will see only items from the sites they have access to.

If you add a related link from another site and someone doesn’t have access, then clicking on the link will lead to the usual no-access experience (e.g. depending on the site settings and the user, they might be able to request access from an admin, or see an error).

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Rob Horan Community Leader May 06, 2021

@Simi Shaheed- thank you.  One followup - is there any reason why content from some sites is promoted while content from others just does not appear at all?  What governs the suggestions that appear as you type?

Is there a way to limit this to a particular site so that users could enter in issue keys and have the system search only the site its limited to?

Simi Shaheed Atlassian Team May 12, 2021

@Rob Horan it's just based on recency, so it will depend on which sites you've been viewing content on to get into that list. 

Even the search is just going through your recently viewed items for now, but I'll capture that feedback for us to think about as a future improvement!

Rob Horan Community Leader May 12, 2021

@Simi Shaheed- thank you!

My biggest concerns are around access control - ensuring people can only see what they are supposed to see.

To that end, I am looking forward to seeing how Team Central users will only see projects they are allowed to see, and not everything.

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bradley Atlassian Team Jun 02, 2021

Heya @Rob Horan, I'm Bradley, a designer at Atlassian, working on Team Central. I'm currently trying to learn a little more about how teams are currently structuring their Atlassian sites and how they'd expect to map those to Team Central.

I'm wondering if you'd have time to jump on a 30 min zoom call with me so that I can learn a little more about your specific use case to help inform our design.

If you're up for it, you can schedule a call using my calendly page


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Rob Horan Community Leader Jun 08, 2021

Hi @bradley - sorry for the delay.  I have put something on the calendar.  Thank you!


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