IT Management Articles

How to Choose Issue Tracking Software to Squash Bugs Quicker

by Rishabh Saxena
Published on 3 August 2017

How to choose issue tracking software header

No matter what kind of project or product, bugs and issues are ever present. They hold up the development process. Precious time is lost in sorting out problems. Even greater time is wasted if the right issue tracker is not used - whether working on a website, application, design form etc.

This is why issue tracking systems are a vital part of any development team's tools.

However, working out how to choose issue tracking software is often more complicated than squashing those bugs.

Here are a list of points that should be considered when deciding what issue tracking software your team should be using.

Adaptability

Most projects today involve different technologies, frameworks, and tools. Each of these are subject to the constantly evolving needs and priorities of the project as well as their scalability. Ideally, the issue tracker should be independent of the underlying technology.

Some conventional issue tracking systems require a back end setup on a specific database such as MySQL. While these conventional systems can be good log based systems in certain projects, they may not be suitable for projects which are less text-based and more visual-based.

If working in web development, most modern tools and frameworks such as React, AngularJS etc. heavily focus on the visual aspect and user interface of applications and websites. These kinds of projects would benefit from using visual issue tracking platforms.

Suitability for teams

If an issue tracking solution is not suited to the team, it can be a complete disaster. The team will be bogged down even further in navigating through the system rather than solving bugs, that they might as well not have a system in place.

Choosing the right fit for your team is paramount. All teams in an organization don't need to use the same kind of issue tracking system, as every team will not be performing the same function. Neither will all the teams be working on the same kind of projects.

That being said, choosing an issue tracker that makes it accessible for as many stakeholders to participate in the process as possible is always good.

For one, it saves resources - both in terms of money and time. Setting up different systems for developers, designers, managers, quality assurance testers etc. can be a painstaking process. Log-based systems can be tedious for managers and external clients to access and discern.

A website issue tracker, on the other hand, needs to have enough functionality to satisfy the technical requirements of designers as well as developers. So whether you for a visual website issue tracker like zipBoard or a project management oriented bug tracker like JIRA, make sure it works for your team.

User friendly

The matter of who the end user is should also be an important part of your consideration. Some organizations have issue trackers set up only for internal teams. But a growing trend is collecting customer feedback that registers as bugs on the system.

While there is the option to set up a support system (such as a live chat) on services like Zendesk or Intercom and then integrate them with issue tracking systems, some companies want bug and issue tracking systems that can be accessed directly by the end user.

For example, in websites, this can be done by embedding custom JavaScript code into the native code. Another option is to let users submit bugs and issues in the form of a publicly shareable link that can give context to the product team with an image rather than just text.

Either way, having an issue tracker that is suited to the end user can help teams cut down on the process of collecting user feedback via separate channels. This can save time, and streamline the issue tracking process.

Cost

Each team does not have access to the same kind of resources so, rather than choosing an issue tracker that runs parallel to all other development tools, teams are opting for subscription-based trackers.

The advantage of using a software-as-a-service (SaaS) issue and bug tracker is that:

  • There is little to no technical overhead on your side
  • Having all the data in the cloud makes remote web development collaboration easier
  • Scaling as per needs is quick and easy as you can easily add (or remove) users when required.

How to choose issue tracking software: next steps

Finding the right project or website issue tracker is important to get your team effectively iterating on core development. Moving forward with new features is difficult without addressing the backlog of issues. To do so efficiently, consider the points listed above on how to choose issue tracking software.

If you're already using an issue tracker, go ahead, leave a review on GetApp to help other users understand how it works for your team.

Rishabh Saxena is a digital marketer with an interest in web development and designs. To read more of his articles, find him on Medium.


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