JIRA Review

Fairly easy to use for users but steep learning curve for admins.

Valuable Features

<ul> <li>Customizable workflows</li> <li>Agile / Scrum compatibility and offerings</li> <li>Granular access/security settings</li> <li>Large selection of add-ons</li> <li>Ease of use </li> </ul>

Improvements to My Organization

Since our service is customized to each client, the ability to customize workflow for each project's specific needs has improved productivity simply by streamlining our efforts.

Use of Solution

We switched to JIRA this past February. So 7 months.

Deployment Issues

There is a steep learning curve for administration. While the tool is fairly easy for our users to understand and use, what it takes to set up the system to MAKE it easy for end users is fairly complex. There is a large amount of information to know and many interdependent layers.

Stability Issues

We did not encounter any stability problems due to the JIRA itself. The problems we ran into were server-based and improved significantly after upgrading our server.

Scalability Issues

Not yet. =)

Customer Service and Technical Support

Customer Service: I would give it high marks. From an account service standpoint, all of my questions and requests have been replied to quickly and thoroughly.Technical Support: Medium-high. It mostly takes the form of Q&A within their Atlassian Answers forum that then leads to links of posted documentation on their Confluence pages. So there is a wealth of information and people able to offer advice and help. But it has a very "self-help" feel when trying to track down answers.

Previous Solutions

We did previously use a competing solution. We decided to switch based on several factors: cost, (lack of) support from the previous tool, and mostly we felt the strengths and weaknesses of the prior tool did not match up well with our needs and processes.

Initial Setup

It was complex, but in a good way. We used a vendor called Service Rocket to help us through the process and they were magnificent. We spent several weeks with them as they got to know our process and needs to help tailor the setup solution. So it was complex in that we spent a lot of time closely examining our processes and workflows to make sure the solution fit accurately.

Other Solutions Considered

We looked at numerous other products. Some were more well-traveled offerings like Rally, AtTask, Clarizen, and Basecamp. Others were newer to the game like 10,000ft.

Other Advice

The most frustrating part of implementing a new management system is "you don't know what you don't know", so it's easy to miss which questions to ask or requests to make. JIRA has a LOT of knobs and levers to pull and is many layers deep in it's setup. If you're not intimately familiar with its offerings, I highly suggest using a consultant or vendor to help step through the implementation. I also suggest being specific in needs and wants. We’ve found JIRA is flexible enough to adapt to our needs more often than we have to adapt to its offerings.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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