Monday, June 20, 2016

A Scrum Master's Top 5 Joys of JIRA

As a Scrum Master, I live in Atlassian's JIRA daily and love their administrator tools. I drive JIRA alongside all sprint meetings I facilitate: planning, reviews, retrospectives and even daily stand-ups.

A well organized JIRA platform creates great transparency in a team and maximizes sprint success.

Top 5 Joys of JIRA (A Scrum Master's Secret Weapon): 

1. Active Sprint Agile Board View 

The active sprint view gives a quick overview of the sprint's health. Any teammate can easily update ticket status by dragging it to the next column.

JIRA admin can add Quick Filters to show a team member's assigned tickets, or filter out "done" tickets to see items in progress.

2. Custom Dashboards

Custom dashboards are easy to configure and scale well for team members. Depending on the audience (Product / Design / Development), you can set up the dashboard to show each person what matters to them.

I typically include gadgets that show what is assigned to the current user and reported by the current user. The sprint health gadget and days remaining gadget are nice visual additions to the dashboard and encourage team ownership of the sprint.

3. Advanced Filtering + Bulk Ticket Modifier

JIRA's Advanced Filtering tool is a great help for backlog clean-up. Use JQL to query specific projects, epics, versions, broken down by status, assignee, reporter, and even sprint.

From the filter, you can bulk modify tickets. This is especially helpful when you are closing a project or transitioning it to another team member.

4. Workflow Diagram Tool

For visual people, JIRA's workflow diagram tool uses colors to display status categories (to do, in progress, done) and gives you flexibility to choose which statuses transition to which.

Depending on how strict or open your permissions need to be, you can meet your team's requirements through this easy workflow designer.

5. Epic Filter on the Agile Board to Navigate the Backlog Black Hole

To clear out the clutter in the backlog and easily prioritize tickets within an epic, Product Owners can use the Epic filter on the JIRA agile board. It's a simple function but makes a big difference!

And there you have it! What are your favorite JIRA functions? I'd love to hear some best practices!

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