Jira Review

Jira has gone from being a simple bug tracker to a full development planning suite; so SO many areas could be improved.

What is most valuable?

For the most part the system is simple to use and simple to administer.

How has it helped my organization?

When I began I was part of a very small development team that did not have any formal bug tracking in place. Jira has gone from being a simple bug tracker to a full development planning suite, in addition to tracking our support and production tasks.

What needs improvement?

There are so, SO many areas that I couldn’t even begin to count. A cursory glance at fixes and improvements requested by users would speak volumes. The most basic of requests have been allowed to languish for years, many over a decade. (really) The most basic improvement would be to offer WYSIWYG text editing. There are open source packages that could easily be integrated, but Atlassian wants people to buy Confluence. Bulk editing multi-value fields should not be limited to overwriting what is already there. There should be an append mode offered.

For how long have I used the solution?

We’ve had Jira in place for 6 ½ years.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

I have not had any issues.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

None to date.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

None to date, though we did need to move to a new server to meet our growing needs.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service:

Atlassian’s customer service used to be wonderful. There was phone support that was always accessible. Support is absolutely terrible now. All support is performed via email and the response time is long. Often multiple messages need to be exchanged before a point is made and understood.

Technical Support:

Not the worst but definitely no longer the best.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

No solution was in place prior to Jira.

How was the initial setup?

Our initial setup was fairly straightforward, though all we run on the server is the bare minimum needed to get Jira up and running.

What about the implementation team?

IT put the server together for me and I took care of the rest.

What was our ROI?

In the beginning it was fantastic. The annual license renewal was definitely worth it for phone support and significant improvements in Jira. Nowadays the “improvements” are lackluster at best, and phone support is gone. The annual renewal would be worth it to stay current with the latest releases, but Atlassian’s plugin support is lacking; lack of plugin support has stopped us from upgrading, and continues to.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I don’t recall the original start up cost. The initial license fee was considerably lower than it is today, and had no limits on the number of users. Today, apart from the general costs of maintaining the server, we have the annual license renewal fee.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I looked at Trac, Bugzilla, Test Track.

What other advice do I have?

Before making a decision have a look at the requested features and bug fixes – see what has not been addressed and what the plans are to address the features of greatest interest to you.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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