by Matt Mullarkey-Toner
Published on 23 March 2016
JIRA is issue tracking, bug tracking, and project management and planning software. JIRA's parent company is Atlassian, which was founded by Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar in 2002 who met while studying at University of New South Wales in Australia. The two bootstrapped the company and charged AU$10,000 on their credit cards to fund the business.
Fast forward to the present and the organization has grown into a force in the SaaS world as a publicly traded company that pulled in $319 million in revenue in 2015. It's a hugely popular application, and there are many JIRA integrations for other business software to help tailor it to the needs of a growing business.
As mentioned above, JIRA is popular for project management as well as issue tracking, bug tracking, and reporting. It's present in four different categories of GetApp's software ranking, GetRank, reaching #7 in Project Portfolio Management, #11 in Task Management, #14 in Project Collaboration, and #16 in Project Management.
There are also lots of plugins that work with JIRA. For example, the most popular JIRA plugin lets you import projects, tasks and users from Asana In terms of project management or process management techniques, it is designed with Agile, Scrum, and Kanban in mind. The design is more utilitarian than beautiful, but don't let that put you off: a big perk is the amount of customization that's possible and JIRA integrations, although you'll need to be comfortable with the system.
Looking at our user reviews , we can glean some basic pros and cons for JIRA:
JIRA is reasonably priced: It starts as low as $10 per month for up-to 10 users, and works on a tier system after that (e.g. 15 users for $75, 25 for $150); you can also try it free with no credit card required. It's also available for free in select circumstances. Atlassian doesn't have a traditional sales structure or team, and instead puts up all of its pricing information on its site.
As mentioned above, Atlassian offers more than just JIRA. It has many different pieces of software, all of which include JIRA integrations, including:
Atlassian Confluence - Collaboration software that's essentially a wiki for business. It provides a central location for information, training, and a familiar format due to the popularity of Wikipedia.
JIRA Service Desk - An IT help desk solution that helps your company handle requests from customers or employees. It has 1000's of add-ons, real-time reporting, and advanced SLA options.
Bitbucket - Offers hosting for projects in a manner similar to Github. It has features such as pull requests, branch permissions, and inline discussions.
Hipchat - An advanced instant messaging app that's built for team communication. You can share files, gifs, Instagram feeds, Twitter notifications, and more. It supports Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, and Linux devices.
According to GetApp data, JIRA integrates with 45 percent of the most popular apps on our site. Some examples of popular integrations with JIRA include 323 of users that use it with Salesforce, and 719 that use Slack.
Sebastian Pereira, Director of IT for Santex, agreed and said that it was a "powerful tool" and loved the customization of the solution. He explains further:
JIRA has an overall rating of 4.28/5 on GetApp. Tristan Davey, Senior Software Engineer at SafetyCulture, rated the app 3 out of 5 stars. He said its strengths were that it's "flexible, configurable and durable" while one of its weaknesses was that it's difficult to use for beginners. He explains further: "It can be slow and its configurability comes with some sacrifices in its ease of use. Some of the advanced configuration is near impossible without an expert in the software guiding or teaching you 'the ways of JIRA'. Its mobile UI is about as functional as a rock and its completely lacking some things I would expect from a modern web application. However, it is still very much the best option on the market of the tools I have used. Atlassian works hard to keep simplifying and improving the experience and it gets better each month."
JIRA integrates with a total of 71 apps listed on GetApp, which is a fairly high number when compared to other apps in its class. For example, popular project management software solutions Trello and Wrike, integrate with 23 and 34 apps, respectively. Some of the most popular JIRA integrations include Zapier, Workfront, and Zendesk.
Although JIRA isn't in the top five for any GetRank, it has the highest score possible for integrations (20) in the categories of project portfolio management, task management, and project management. It scored the second possible highest score (19) in project collaboration.
You should have a good idea of JIRA, but just in case you don't, let's recap. JIRA is good for : bug tracking, integrating with popular SaaS apps, and is highly customizable. JIRA suffers from : a difficult learning curve for beginners, a high price for larger teams, and a company making the switch from on-premise to cloud might find it difficult. With that said, if you are interested in finding more about JIRA and other applications, make sure to check out our alternatives page which will give you an even more-detailed overview of JIRA and its competitors.