Product Guides & Tutorials

Everything you need to know about buying, using, and customizing Jira Software.

Illustration of people walking into a monitor with Jira displayed

A brief overview of Jira

Jira is a family of products built to help all types of teams manage their work. Jira offers several products and deployment options that are purpose-built for Software, IT, Business, Ops teams, and more. Read on to see which is right for you.

About the Jira platform

Products and apps built on top of the Jira platform help teams plan, assign, track, report and manage work. The Jira platform brings teams together for everything from agile software development and customer support to managing shopping lists and family chores.

Four products are built on the Jira platform: Jira Software, Jira Service Desk, Jira Ops, and Jira Core. Each product comes with built-in templates for different use cases and integrates seamlessly, so teams across organizations can work better together.

Jira products overview

Jira Software

Plan, track and release world-class software.

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Jira Service Desk

Give your customers an easy way to ask for help and your agents a faster way to deliver it.

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Jira Core

Manage any business project including marketing campaigns, HR onboarding, approvals and legal document reviews.

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Jira Ops

Gain more control, faster response, and less interruption during major incidents.

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  • Software developers
  • Project managers
  • SCRUM masters
  • Customers
  • Service desk agents
  • IT managers
  • Support agents
  • Support managers
  • Non-technical users
  • Business users
  • Incident managers
  • Software developers
  • DevOps managers
  • Site reliability engineers
  • IT managers
  • Incident response teams
  • CTO
Use cases
  • Bug tracking
  • Project management
  • Product management
  • Process management
  • Task management
  • Software development
  • Agile software development
  • IT Helpdesk
  • ITSM
  • Customer Support
  • Enterprise Service Management
  • Ticketing support
  • Service Request Management
  • Incident Management
  • Problem Management
  • Change Management
  • Non-technical team projects
  • Workflow approvals
  • Task management
  • Incident management
  • Incident response
  • Incident tracking
Important integrations
  • Confluence
  • Bitbucket
  • Slack
  • GitHub
  • Confluence
  • Opsgenie and other alerting tools
  • Statuspage
  • Confluence
  • Jira Service Desk
  • Slack
  • Zoom
Hosting options
  • Cloud, Server, Data Center
  • Cloud, Server, Data Center
  • Cloud, Server, Data Center
  • Cloud
  • All Jira Software users can access Jira Core features
  • Users have access
  • Software projects & features
  • Business projects & features
  • All Jira Software users can access Jira Core features
  • Users have access
    • Software projects & features
    • Business projects & features
  • All Jira Software users can access Jira Core features.
  • Users have access to Business Projects & features (Dashboards, Reports, etc).
  • Jira Ops is currently free for early access until version 1.0 is released
  • Jira Ops version 1.0 is targeted for sometime in 2019

Jira Software hosting options

Jira Software is available in two hosting options: cloud and self-managed. For our self-managed option, customers can choose between server and data center. Not sure which option is right for you? Check out this overview:



With Jira Software Cloud, we host and set up your Jira Software site in the cloud for you. This is generally the best option for teams who want to get started quickly and easily, and for teams who don't want to manage the technical complexity of hosting themselves.



With Jira Software Server, you host Jira Software on your own hardware and customize your setup however you'd like. This is generally the best option for teams who need to manage all the details, have stricter requirements for data governance, and don't mind the additional complexity of hosting themselves.

Data Center

Data Center

With Jira Software Data Center, you can host Jira Software on your own hardware or with IaaS vendors like AWS and Azure. This is generally the best option for enterprise teams who need uninterrupted access to Jira Software and performance at scale.

Key terms to know


A Jira 'issue' refers to a single work item of any type or size that is tracked from creation to completion. For example, an issue could be a feature being developed by a software team, a to-do item for a marketing team, or a contract that needs to be written by a legal team.

Tip: Other commonly used terms for issues are 'requests', 'tickets' or 'tasks'. We recommend using 'issues' to help your team stay on the same page when working across the Jira product family. 


A project is, quite simply, a collection of issues that are held in common by purpose or context. Issues grouped into projects can be configured in a variety of ways, ranging from visibility restrictions to available workflows.

Jira Software projects are flexible working spaces that allow you to group like issues by team, business unit, product, or stream of work. Projects don't need to be tied to the same delivery date. For example, if you group your issues by team, you could have a marketing project, a development project, and a legal project, all of which would track ongoing work of those particular teams. Every issue would be represented by an issue keys (specific to a project) and an issue number, i.e. MKT-13, DEV-4, LEG-1.


Workflows represent the sequential path an issues takes from creation to completion. A basic workflow might look something like this:

Example of a Jira workflow

In this case, Open, Done, and the labels in between represent the status an issue can take, while the arrows represent potential transitions from one status to another. Workflows can be simple or complex, with conditions, triggers, validators and post functions. We'll dive deeper into these advanced configurations later in this guide. For now, it is recommended for novice Jira Software admins to keep their workflows as simple as possible, until business needs determine the requirements for complex workflow configurations. 


Agile is not a Jira Software-specific term. It's a work philosophy that originated in the software development field and has since expanded to a variety of other industries. While we won't belabor the definition here (there are great resources for that!), agile emphasizes an iterative approach to work informed by customer feedback where delivery occurs incrementally and continuously. The ideal agile team can move quickly and adapt to changing requirements without missing much of a beat.

So why are we bringing up agile here? Because Jira Software has major feature sets designed particularly for agile, including scrum or kanban. So, when you see terms like boards, estimation, or cards, it's time to start thinking how agile fits into your work practice.

It's important to note that because agile is a philosophy and a culture of work, simply using Jira Software won't make your team truly agile. That said, it is a tool built to help your team get there.

Additional Resources

Bookmark these resources to stay connected with fellow Jira Software users, for ongoing updates about new features in Jira Software Cloud, and the latest documentation.

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