The building blocks of any project are issues. Issues act as the packets of work that travel through their respective workflows within their projects, until the work is completed.
An issue can have subtasks that can be assigned and tracked individually. You can also control issue-level security to restrict an issue to select members of your team. On this page, you'll learn more about creating and converting issues and subtasks, and setting issue level security. If you're looking to import multiple issues (and subtasks) using a CSV file, you can find the import process explained in more detail here.
Before you begin
You need the Create Issue project permission for the issue's relevant project.
We've released a new issue view for Jira Core. The issue detail view will look a little different, some procedures will change slightly, and we have a new editor with markdown support. Take a look at Changes to issues in the new issue view to see what's changed.
Create an issue
To create an issue anywhere in Jira:
- Click Create ( ).
- Type a Summary for the issue.
- Complete all required fields and any other fields that you want.
- Optional: To change which fields appear when you create another issue, click Configure Fields and select and deselect the fields you want. When you next create an issue, the selected fields will be displayed.
- Optional: To create other issues with the same Project and Issue Type, select the Create another checkbox. Depending on your configuration and issue creation history, some fields may be pre-populated. Review these before creating the new issue.
- When you're finished, click Create.
You can quickly add multiple issues to your project from the board. To do this, select + Create in the left-most board column, complete the summary and save. However, if you have any mandatory fields for issues you create, clicking + Create will take you to the Create dialog.
Clone an issue
Clone an issue to quickly create a duplicate of it in the same project. The cloned issue contains most of the same details stored in the original issue, like the summary, affected versions, and components. Some details aren't cloned, like time logged, comments, history, and links to Confluence pages. The issue status also returns to the first step of the corresponding workflow, and the resolutions are cleared. The cloned issue can be linked to the original issue, but doesn't have to be.
To clone an issue:
- Open the issue
- Select more actions (•••) > Clone
- Optionally edit the cloned issue's Summary
- If applicable to the issue you're cloning, you can also select from these options:
- Clone subtasks to copy existing subtasks
- Clone attachments to add any existing attachments
- Clone links to add any existing linked issues
- Clone sprint values to copy across the issue's current and closed sprint values
- Click Create
Create a subtask
A subtask can be created for an issue to either split the issue into smaller chunks or to allow various aspects of an issue to be assigned to different people. If you find a subtask is holding up the resolution of an issue, you can convert the subtask to an issue, to allow it to be worked on independently. If you find an issue is really just a subtask of a bigger issue, you can also convert an issue to a subtask.
You can only create subtasks if your administrator has enabled subtasks, and has added the subtask issue type to the project's issue type scheme.
- Open the issue you'd like to be the parent issue
- Click Create subtask ( ) under the issue summary
- Add an issue summary and click Create
Note that when you create a subtask, the following values are inherited from the parent task:
- issue security level
You can customize the Create subtask screen to show fields you use most often. To do this, click Configure Fields at the top right corner of the dialog, and use the All and Custom links to switch between the default screen and your custom settings. Your changes are saved for future use.
Work with issue types
Change the issue type in the new issue view
After you create an issue, you may want to change its type to better represent the work that needs to be done. For example, you may want to turn an issue that was raised as a task into a bug.
- Open the issue you're working with
- Click the issue type icon in the top-left corner next to the issue key
- Choose the new issue type
If there are different fields in the new issue type, or if it has a different workflow, we'll open the move issue screen to complete the change.
Convert a subtask to an issue
You can't do this in the new issue view just yet. Click the issue key to go to the full-page view (if you're not already there) then click through to the old issue view at the top-right to complete this process.
- Navigate to the subtask issue you would like convert.
- Select more (•••) > Convert to Issue.
- In the Step 1. Select Issue Type screen, select a new issue type (i.e. a standard issue type) and click Next.
- If the subtask's current status is not an allowed status for the new issue type, the Step 2. Select New Status screen is displayed. Select a new status and click Next.
- In the Step 3. Update Fields screen, you will be prompted to enter any additional fields if they are required. Otherwise, you will see the message 'All fields will be updated automatically'. Click Next.
- The Step 4. Confirmation screen is displayed. If you are satisfied with the new details for the issue, click Finish.
- The issue will be displayed. You will see that it is no longer a subtask, that is, there is no longer a parent issue number displayed at the top of the screen.
Convert an issue to a subtask
- Open the issue and click on the issue type icon at the top-left of the issue
- Select Subtask from the list of available issue types
- Select the parent issue for the new subtask
You can't convert an issue to a subtask if the issue has subtasks of its own. You first need to convert the issue's subtasks to standalone issues, then you can convert them to subtasks of another issue if you need to. Subtasks can't be moved directly from one issue to another—you need to convert them to standard issues, then to subtasks of their new parent issue.
Restrict access to an issue
While we recommend working openly, there are times where you may want to restrict who can view a particular piece of work. For example, you may want to restrict who can view tasks related to sensitive financial information, hiring or other personal employment information, or security-related software engineering work.
You can restrict who can view an issue in both classic and next-gen projects, but the procedure is different in each.
You can't edit project permissions or roles on the Free plan for Jira Software or Jira Core, and you can't configure issue-level security on any Free plan (including Jira Service Desk). Find out more about how project permissions work in Free plans. To take advantage of Jira's powerful project permission management features, upgrade your plan.
Restrict access to an issue in a classic project
In classic projects, you can restrict access by setting the issue’s security level.
To set the issue security level on issues in classic projects:
Choose the lock icon at the top-right of the issue. This icon only appears if the project has a security scheme configured.
Select the desired security level.
You can also remove an issue's security level by clicking the lock icon and selecting Remove security level.
Jira admins can add, edit, or remove security levels (and their membership) through issue security schemes. Learn more about issue security schemes.