Jira lesson 08 – board and workflow configuration

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Jira board overview

Every board in Jira system constists of column layout. We have as many columns as we have defined different states in our project. Standard simple project has defined free columns:

  • To Do
  • In Progress
  • Done

We can change the state of our issues between the defined states (here columns).  What if we want to add new column (state) to our project ?

In this case we need to go deeper into Jira project configuration and say something about workflows in the projects.

Workflow management in Jira

Let’s go into Project settings by clicking settings icon in the left sidebar in board panel.

When you get into Project settings panel you need to click Workflows link. You can see that our project has defined one default workflow for every issue types.

Let’s click small pen in Actions area to edit our workflow.

This should redirect us to standard Administrator Access page because the action needs more privillages.

We can see simple workflow for our project. Someone will ask what is workflow ? Well in Jira workflow is a kind of definition what states we have in a system and what are the possible transitions between them. In our example workflow we can see three possible statuses (states) and we are informed that we can go to every status from any other ones.

Let’s suppose that we want to add new status that in the later step we will connect we new column. We name the status Verification .

In order to do this we need to start from copying our existing workflow.

Copying existing project workflow in Jira

It is good practise that when we work on any changes in project workflow we should copy existing one and work on new copy. This practice will help us to avoid problems by possible mistakes while working with a workflow. When we make any mistakes we can always go back to the original workflow.

In order to copy existing workflow we need to click Copy link. This will provide us to the new popup window where we can modify name and description of the workflow. You can type here your own names or just copy existing ones like below:

You can see that new workflow is defined but is inactive.

You can activate newly copied workflow by clicking on Add Workflow -> Add Existing.

This will open a window titled Add Existing Workflow where you need to select our workflow.

Click Next button and in the next window select all possible issues and click Finish button.

The last thing you should do is to publish the workflow to activate it.

You should see two steps process when at a first step you will be asked to associate all existing types and statuses to be migrated automatically.

In the second step you will see the migration process of all your existing issues into new workflow.

Accept the finalization process by clicking Acknowledge button.

Adding new status in workflow

The current state is that we have copied existing workflow to the new ones. We also assigned newly created workflow to our project.

Now we are ready to add new status to the workflow. Let’s click edit pen in the section Actions.



You should see our three statuses. You need  to click Add status button now. Type in the popup window the name of a new status: Verification and check the option Allow all statuses to transition to this one.

When you click Add button this will show you the window Create New Status. Select category of the new status like below: In Progress and accept by clicking Create button.

Now you only need to publish workflow after our last changes.

You will be asked if you want to copy a workflow. Click No button because we did it in the previous steps and we are working on a copy.

Adding new column do the board

We are ready now to add a new column and connect it with the new status. Let’s click Board -> Configure in the right top side of the board.

This action should open board configuration panel. You need to click in the left sidebar a position Columns. System prompt us that new status has been created but it is not assigned to any columns.

We can change this by clicking on Add column button. Type tha name of the column Verification.

The final step is to drag and drop status Verification in column Verification.

Let’s go back to our project board by clicking on Back to board button.

We can see that board has new column and you can can easily drag and drop any issues into the new column.

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