The Pros and Cons of Using Jira Software
If projects are always simple and easy to complete, there would be no need for project management. This is not to say that project management is only for huge and complex projects. During the course of completing a project, issues will always come up. In a software development project, these would be called bugs. Bugs or any other types of issue are source of delays that can impact the success of project delivery. Therefore, teams need a system to manage and track issues in particular, and the project in general.
Many project management software today like Jira Software include issue tracking as an additional module or feature. These systems usually include information such as the date the issue was identified, a description of the problem, its priority, and the responsible person or team for resolving the issue, among others. The market for bug tracking software is projected to grow by $600M by 2026 from $218M in 2018. This is expected as more organizations have adopted project management and tracking as an essential business strategy.
Jira Software is a product of Atlassian, a global public company with headquarters in Sydney. Jira was initially released in 2002 as a pure issue tracking software for software developers. Over the years, it has been adopted by non-IT teams for tracking any type of issue, task, and other work items, becoming a popular project tracking solution. With the launch of the Atlassian Marketplace, many developers have created Jira plugins that extended the features of the software. Today, it continues to be a popular issue and project tracking system in software development for agile PM teams.
Jira Software Uses
Jira Software is a customizable workflow engine. It allows users to track issues, bugs, tasks, and other work items through a predefined workflow that can be modified to fit users’ requirements. Here are some of its use cases:
- For bug tracking. Jira is primarily used for tracking bugs related to software and apps as they are being developed. It enables teams to find, record, and track bugs. It also provides a system to assign them to the right person or team at the right time.
- For product/project management. As a product or project management software, it allows users to assign the needed tasks to complete the product/project. It also has tools such as views and reports that provide information about due dates and statuses. The team is able to collaborate with each other, provide feedback, as well as manage approvals for requests or changes.
- Kanban software development. Jira includes flexible Kanban boards to give users full visibility into what has been done, what is currently being done, and what still has to be done. Using the Kanban system to develop software allows the team to properly prioritize their work, visualize the workflow, and minimize work-in-progress.
- Scrum software development. Agile teams use it to develop software using the Scrum method. They are able to stay focused on their iterations at a fast pace. Customizable scrum boards enable them to deliver incremental value in an organized way.
- For project tracking and management. Jira is a preferred project tracking and management software by software developers and IT teams. It supports both traditional and agile project management. It is centralized and highly customizable, and its workflows allow users to control the status of the project and how it transitions to other statuses, providing excellent tracking information.
The Cons or Disadvantages of Jira
Here are a few negative feedback by Jira Software users regarding their experience:
- Not the best mobile app. Jira users are more than satisfied with its web version, but not so much with its mobile app. They complain of having to navigate a lot in order to do various tasks. In contrast, they can all do these actions smoothly in the web version.
- Complex integration and migration from other application lifecycle management (ALM) systems. Migrating a project, for example, from Microsoft Team Foundation Server into Jira involves manually migrating each artifact into Jira, which is very time-consuming.
- Reports are not reusable. Jira graphical reports cannot be downloaded as an image. Using other methods alters the resolution of the images, resulting in poor images.
- Limited file size upload. Users complain that the file size upload is limited to 10MB or less. Therefore, uploading a photo, video, or document that is more than 10MB in size is not allowed.
- Confusing UI. Some people find the user interface a bit cluttered, and filtering tools are not the easiest to use. Also, some find the configurations confusing, because some parts of the software still use an older version of their graphical interface, while some parts are newer.
For those who want to search for other options, you can read our Top 3 Software Alternatives to Jira Software.
The Pros or Advantages of Jira
Jira remains to be a popular solution with over 65,000 customers worldwide. Here are some of the reasons why:
- It supports roadmap requirements. Jira has tools that enable users to sketch out the big picture, communicate plans, and connect the bigger roadmap goals to the team’s everyday tasks.
- Great for agile. The software provides a single view for all user stories and can generate the needed reports for various sprints, such a burndown charts, sprint velocity, and others. Also, users can organize tickets into sprints and releases, and also monitor the workload and task assignments of the team.
- Available integration. The issue and project tracking software integrate with many popular third-party software. For example, integration with Hipchat and Slack makes it easy to communicate issues and respond to notifications. More than 3000 apps are available at the Atlassian Marketplace to extend the features of the software.
- Highly customizable. Jira allows users to create any type of issue. They can also customize workflows to fit any requirement of a particular company. Users can create and customize various elements, such as tables, forms, timelines, reports, fields, and more.
- Works for different types of users. The software can be used by developers, project managers, engineers, managers, and other non-tech business professionals.
Jira is one of the best issue and project tracking software available today, with great support for agile. It also offers thousands of plugins to extend its features, as well as an on-premise option. However, it is not the only option of companies looking for a way to track bugs, issues and tasks as they manage their projects.