5 apps to level up your Jira project management

by Sarah Bader | Last updated on July 20, 2022

Jira is one of the leading, feature-rich project management tools on the market. It provides a platform where teams meet, tasks get prioritized, and progress is tracked – ultimately ensuring that projects get done right.

Project managers in companies of all sizes and across all industries love Jira’s native capabilities, which can be further enhanced by a host of useful plugins. In this article, we’ll explore Jira project management from all angles.

What is Jira?

Jira was initially designed to track bugs and issues, but it’s evolved into a powerful work management tool for everything from requirements and test case management to agile software development.

Who uses Jira?

Organizations use Jira to track and manage their software projects. Jira helps them ensure that people are focused on the right activities and that tasks get completed on time and in the most efficient way possible.

Jira project management is popular among software development teams because it’s an agile project management tool and supports any agile methodology (scrum, kanban, or bespoke.)

However, it’s also suitable for other kinds of business projects. Jira work management (JWM) is designed for non-technical users and teams. Everyone from project and portfolio managers, product managers and owners, to marketing managers find it easy to learn and use.

Today, over 65,000 businesses use Jira for project management, including Cisco Systems, Spotify, and eBay.

What types of projects can you manage using Jira?

You can manage two types of projects in Jira:

  1. Company-managed: Standard projects that are created by admins and may be copied across multiple projects.
  2. Team-managed: Projects that can be configured individually and created by anyone.

Using Jira for project management

Jira gives you a way to manage a project from its start, through execution, to the final wrap-up. It offers an array of great features and functions, the most notable of which include:

1. Workflows

Jira’s project management capabilities are based on workflows representing different organizational processes: To Do, In Progress, and Done.

Jira controls all the rules used to move project tasks to different workflow stages. For example, a task might be “In Progress” while a developer is working on it and then move to the “Done” stage once the work is complete.

Jira offers several default workflows; alternatively, you can download pre-built workflows from the Atlassian Marketplace or design your own.

2. Reports

The Jira project management tool includes several pre-configured reports that allow you to monitor the progress of your projects and ensure everyone is on track and on budget, that there’s no scope creep, and that any bottlenecks and deviations are spotted early.

3. Automation

Jira project management allows you to automate the execution of time-consuming, low-value tasks and processes. You can specify the rules that trigger automated events and activities, for example, the sending of a weekly progress report to the project owner. The automation also works with third-party software you integrate from the Atlassian Marketplace (more on this in the next section.)

Extending your Jira project management tool with other apps

The Jira project management tool supports a variety of integrations and add-ons, so you can plan, monitor, and manage all your agile software development projects through a single tool.

Today, there are over 3,000 Jira Software integrations, apps, add-ons, and plugins that can be tailored to suit a variety of use cases.

What are the best apps to use with Jira?

Jira can integrate seamlessly with most of the tools your teams already use, such as Slack, Zoom, GitHub, and Zendesk.

You can also integrate other more niche apps such as those used for design, IT service management, and time tracking. The Atlassian Marketplace is a fantastic place to find the apps and integrations you need for your teams.

Let’s look at some of the most popular apps used in conjunction with Jira project management:

1. GitHub / GitLab

Connecting Jira Software to compatible development tools such as GitHub and GitLab gives your developers an extended range of functionality and information related to their development work. You can connect Jira to multiple instances of the same development tool.

It’s quick and easy to link your GitHub and GitLab Enterprise accounts and their respective repositories to Jira. You can then view commits, branches, and pull requests.

2. Bitbucket

Linking your Bitbucket Server code hosting service with Jira project management gives you visibility of branches, commits, and pull requests associated with your Jira issues. You can also create new branches and pull requests directly from issues in Jira if your Bitbucket instance is connected.

3. Zephyr

Zephyr for Jira allows you to optimize the quality, speed, and processes of all your testing activities using a single tool.

4. Confluence

Many companies integrate Jira with popular collaboration tools such as Confluence. Confluence is a popular content creation and collaboration platform that keeps team members connected with their content and colleagues so everyone can perform their tasks faster.

Learn more about the benefits of integrating Confluence with your Jira applications.

5. Rewind

While Jira Cloud backs up its platform as a whole, it can’t recover your account-level information in the event it’s corrupted, compromised, or accidentally deleted.

Atlassian (the parent company of Jira) recommends users back up and archive their data frequently.

Rewind offers a way to protect all your account-level Jira Cloud data using automated daily backups and on-demand data recovery. You get easy access to a 365-day backup history with unlimited cloud storage for backups. Plus, if you do need to restore data, you can restore a single file or your entire Jira instance in minutes, with no service tickets required.

Next Steps

Jira is a powerful project management tool, and it becomes even more powerful with the right apps and tools in place. However, be cautious when adding third-party apps to your Jira instance: a 2020 study found that 43% (almost half!) of data breaches are connected to third-party application vulnerabilities. Always ensure that every app you install is necessary, well-developed, and has the proper security protocols in place.

For complete security and control of your Jira data, you need an account-level backup of your Jira data. Reach out to sales@rewind.com to learn more about protecting your Jira data, or start a free trial of Rewind Backups for Jira by clicking below.

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Sarah Bader
Sarah Bader is a content writer, tech enthusiast, and passionate supporter of the Oxford Comma. When she puts her pen down, she can often be found riding her bike around Ottawa or watching trashy reality tv with her dog (he’s a big fan).