JIRA Issues, a focus on user experience.

One of the main platforms by Atlassian is definitely JIRA (And we've built two tools for JIRA: Agile Retrospectives & ScrumPoker, it is one of the most used project management platforms in the world. It has evolved to help out other areas in a business process with the launch of JIRA Service Desk a couple of years back and it has consolidated as a robust platform for business to use for their daily activities.

But as any software platform, there is always room to grow and improve even though there are many Marketplace Vendors that provide add-on’s to help improve its core functionality. The platform is the sole responsible for the most critical aspects of the User Experience. This post will give you a sneak peek into some of the future improvements coming to JIRA.

At Atlassian’s #ConnectWeek we had the privilege to hear Taylor Pechacek, Senior Product Manager from Atlassian; talk about how JIRA can improve on its User Experience to better serve users of the platform. We participated in Connect Week Amsterdam with a Standbot that lets you connect to a JIRA instance to pull each user’s assigned issues, so we had a lot of expectations to hear what’s coming in the next release of the project management platform made by Atlassian.

The core functionality inside JIRA.

One of the most important objects inside JIRA is an Issue, which is the main page where communication in a team happens and also where add-ons can have a meaningful impact in the work done by users.

Some key takeaways from where we will see future improvements in JIRA are:

  • Fewer data in front of the user, to decrease overwhelming of information.
  • Clearer context for actions and layouts.
  • Different views of an issue depending on a user’s role.

It is a difficult balance to play inside a management platform, you need to provide as much information as the user needs without her feeling cluttered by it. Always focusing on having the right information at the correct moment in his daily activities.

Re-structuring any product is always a daunting task, with the probable scenarios of your users not wanting to change and moving on to other platforms. But with the following that Atlassian has, the commitment from the Atlassian User Groups and the strong Marketplace Vendor ecosystem are all strong leveraging points for Atlassian to improve their products user experience with little friction.

Compatibility & discoverability of add-ons.

As an Atlassian Marketplace vendor, one of the most important aspects, when a platform makes a change regarding its core layout, is compatibility of what has been previously built with the new format.

Marketplace Vendor

This will give the developers the time needed in order to improve the software to meet the new requirements without losing the expected workflow that the user is expecting.

Another aspect that has been missing from most of all Atlassian products is the way a user can discover add-ons inside the platform that will enable opportunities to achieve more during his workflow. It is a fine line that needs to be threaded lightly so the user does not react negatively to the suggestions being presented to her. We are really excited that Atlassian is considering this for their main product and this will enable vendors to nail down where their add-on provides value to the user in order to be suggested by the platform.

Avoiding a cluttered workspace.

Some of the main advantages when users are adopting JIRA is the sheer amount of information that the platform can handle and manage. But it has also caused it to become very intimidating to users that are new to the platform and that are reluctant to create the onboarding process for the team.

We saw some great features in the upcoming release of JIRA that will make it easier for new users to adapt quickly to the workflow of their project planning and delivery. The platform will provide more contextual information around each of its features and how team members are doing in their assigned issues.

Customizing the information each user views will be a much-needed feature request that will now be available for the JIRA platform. Giving JIRA Admins a better way of serving their users and for project managers to provide all the data each individual needs to perform their tasks.

All in all, we are working hard to bring our Agile Retrospectives Add-on to the JIRA platform and our Scrum Poker Confluence Add-on to JIRA instances on the Cloud. With the upcoming release of the JIRA platform, we are confident that more users will start moving into this project management platform.


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