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Creating and Handling Issues in JIRA

August 12, 2017
JIRA Issue, JIRA Issue Types, Link Jira Issue

JIRA is used by numerous projects to track defects as well as for project management. Using JIRA the team members and clients can track new tasks and keep track of the items that are to be delivered. In JIRA, every task, new feature or bugs are logged as JIRA issue. Also, every issue can be associated to an assignee and he/ she has to take the complete ownership of it. In this post, we would discuss the basics of JIRA issue, the different types of issues that you can create in JIRA and how to create them.

Topics under Complete JIRA Tutorial Series

Why create JIRA Issue?

Other than being an amazing defect tracking tool, JIRA is well known for helping different members to manage their tasks. JIRA Issue are created in JIRA for these reasons

  • To get a clear idea of all the items and tasks that the team needs to work on. The clients or Business Analysts would simply create an issue in JIRA so that they can track its progress later on.
  • These issues are assigned to different members of the team so that they themselves can own that particular issue and drive it forward. If any problem arises with any particular issue at a later stage, the project manager would easily be able to track down the person who worked on it (the assignee) and get feedbacks regarding the issue’s implementation, its functionality and how to fix it.
  • Issues, in the form of bugs, are created by the testers to keep track of the vulnerable areas of the application and to let the stakeholders decide the current status of the application. These issues can then be assigned to different members who will then drive them forward.
  • The number of issues present for a particular project is a worthy parameter for the project manager and team lead to track the team’s progress. The project manager can analyze the different types of issues present and decide whether the proposed delivery deadline would be successfully met.
  • And most importantly issues tell every project member what they need to work on and whether they themselves are lagging behind in terms of delivery. By looking at the number of issues assigned, each team member can decide what they need to work on today and also plan for the next day.

So, to sum it up in a few words, JIRA helps in structuring the project deliverables and in the planning of team members’ day to day activities.

Different JIRA Issue types

There are different types of JIRA issue that you can create. The issue types depend on the type of project that you are currently in. The issue types available for a project that follows default issue type schema may vary for projects that possess Agile issue type schema. No matter what issue schema you project has, you can create any of the following types of issues in JIRA.

  • Epic – This issue type is available for both default and Agile issue type schema. The epic issue type is used for large tasks which are eventually broken down into several different tasks and features. Epics are functionalities from a broader perspective and generally, it requires the involvement of many team members to complete an epic issue.

Figure 1: Different issue types in JIRA

  • Story – Epics can be broken down into stories. Stories too are relatively big deliverables and need to be further broken down into smaller tasks and features. Story issue type is available for default as well as Agile issue type schema.
  • New Feature – Unlike epic and story, a new feature issue is only available for default issue type schema. A new feature issue can be created as a part of an epic, a story or on its own. New features as the name suggests are generally upcoming features that have to be added to the application. A new feature can be further broken down into different tasks.
  • Task – Task follows a default issue type schema. Tasks are one of the basic issue types which can be part of a story or new feature. Each task can be taken up by a team member and can be completed within the estimated time by the assigned individual.
  • Sub-task – Just like tasks, sub-tasks also follow default issue type schema. Sub-tasks are mostly created within a task or used to link multiple tasks to a story or new feature. Sub-tasks are generally used to bind together related tasks to an epic or new feature.
  • Technical task – Technical tasks can be created for both default and Agile issue type schema. Technical tasks are generally those which are specific to a certain discipline. A developer related technical task, for example, would be a core development task, like setting up a framework or the basic architecture of a project. The main difference between technical task and a normal task is, the QA team before every release would go through a task, but won’t verify the feasibility of a technical task. The testing team too can create technical tasks for themselves which would revolve around core testing discipline, like creating page object model for the newly introduced automation framework.
  • Improvement – Improvement or change requests are JIRA issue which are add-ons over existing tasks or features. Improvements are mostly added by clients for features whose requirements were recently changed. Improvements can be part of default as well as Agile type issue schema.
  • Bug – Bugs are anomalies in the system. They are created when an application functionality is not working as expected. Bugs are logged at different stages in the development cycle and are mostly created by testers and assigned to developers. While going through the regular flow other team members, clients and project managers can also log bugs and assign them to respective team members. Once a bug is created it is preferably linked to its parent feature or task.

NOTE – Users can add any of the above-mentioned issues to custom issue type schema.

Testers before providing sign off for a release or before sprint end goes through every open issue ( an issue which hasn’t been tested yet), and test them thoroughly. During testing, if any problems are encountered with the ideal functionality, they are logged in the form of bugs. Dev technical tasks are not considered for testing.

Creating JIRA Issue

To create JIRA Issue, you must have valid credentials. After logging in, an authorized user can select a project and create an issue for the same. In order to create JIRA Issue, you must follow the following steps.

Figure 2: Creating an JIRA Issue

  • When on JIRA dashboard, select the project for which you want to create an issue. Then, select “Simple Issue tracking” and click on next button.
  • Then select issue Create issue to create an issue of your choice. Depending on the type of issue type schema applicable for your project you can choose from different issue types.
  • Once you have selected the issue type, you need to fill the information related to the issue, like the summary, assign priority, set assignee, enter issue description, and mention severity etc.
  • A project administrator may add or remove some of the fields for the specific issue types depending on the needs of the project.
  • Once all the information has been provided, you simply click “Create” to create the issue. The moment the issue is created, an issue ID is created and a notification is sent over mail to the assignee and the list of watchers applicable for the issue.
  • The issue id is used by the team members, project manager and the client for further tracking.

How to search JIRA issue?

Every JIRA project has hundreds of JIRA issue logged in it. So you must have the ability to search and filter the issues with ease. There are different ways to search issues in JIRA

  • Log into JIRA with your credentials and select your project. Then, click on Issues drop-down and select search for JIRA issue.
  • While you are on the search page you can search issues on the basis of text content, assignee, date created and status.
  • JIRA also provides you the ability to merge different filters together and come up with a custom search filter.
  • Advanced users can also create SQL queries to search issues.
  • Once the filtered JIRA issue are visible, you can simply click on the issue of your choice and view their summary. You can then edit and save the changes.

Conclusion

  • JIRA allows you to create different types of issues depending on your project’s issue schema type. Each issue type has a different purpose and is useful for tracking the team’s activity and for setting individual goals.
  • Each issue can be assigned to a specific team member who would work on it, take complete ownership and drive it forward.
  • The status of each issue is changed by the assignee or team lead based on its current state.
  • The requirement and description provided in each issue is verified by the QA team and closed, as a part of acceptance testing.
  • JIRA Issue can be easily searched using different search parameters and my configuring custom filters.

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