The idea came as a solution to our own problems. We found ourselves having some developers with more support tickets to handle than others. It was also difficult to manage the unsolved issues when somebody was on a leave. That’s why we started creating a solution to speed up and automate the process. We’d reached the point where we decided it was universal enough and ready to be released and shared with other companies who may also be in need of significant workflow improvement.

What it does

Issue Assignment Rules for Jira enables the administrators to configure specific rules which automatically update issue fields once the status is changed. The rules rely on specifically defined user queues, each having its own configurable schedule which proves to be useful when working with teams scattered around the globe. Active rule assigns an issue to the first user in the queue and can also skip some of them if necessary. Once finished, the queue starts over, providing every involved user with equal workload and automated process. In case of leaves, each user can define a holiday, where they can’t be assigned to the new issues, which ensures the uninterrupted workflow. To top it all off, everyone using the app can preview the current state of the queue at any given time for better transparency.

How we built it

We decided to build our solution on the Forge platform entirely, which enabled us to create a fully functional app which not only solves the problem but takes a fraction of a time to make, compared to how long we’d normally spend on building it the conventional way.

Challenges we ran into

Our challenges were mainly posed by the limitations of the Forge platform itself. Lack of the global app page provided by Forge and accessible to all users caused us to make a work-around which is less user-friendly and required adjustments our original designs. We also had some issues with hard-coded dimensions of the modals which disrupted the content but luckily it turned out to be a temporary problem, already fixed by the Atlassian team. All those challenges, coupled with lack of direct access to the storage definitely contributed to slowing down the process and we had to spend some time tackling those difficulties. Nevertheless, the issues didn't turn out to be critical and we are happy with the knowledge and experience gained along the way.

Accomplishments that we’re proud of

We firmly believe that many teams around the world are facing similar workflow problems as we’ve been experiencing in the past. That’s why creating a tool that has the potential to improve their work is the accomplishment we’re most proud of. We also feel like having learnt the process of designing and creating with Forge is definitely a stepping stone towards building efficient and functional apps in a shortest time possible.

What's next for Issue Assignment Rules

Delivering value for customers has always been our main priority, so our focus is to constantly work on new features and improvements that enhance the experience with our apps. In the near future we’re planning on introducing a number of exciting features:

  • Defining substitutes who will handle the work of the currently skipped users
  • Adding support for the Jira groups so that they can be included in the queues
  • Introducing new triggers which cause the queue to move forward
  • Implementing increasingly robust algorithms for the assigning process

What we learned

The most important takeaway from that short journey was simple yet very often overlooked by others, especially in the time of apps overloaded with features. It’s vital to remember that creating an app is all about finding a working solution to a real problem. That’s why the Forge platform turned out to be fully sufficient for us to deliver a finished product.

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