Jira for Project Management 2023: Weighing the Pros and Cons

Almost everyone is familiar with project management software by now. With countless options available today, the real challenge lies in finding the perfect tool for you. However, with so many brands offering similar features, it can be difficult to discern which one is the right fit.

Consider searching for the perfect project management tool like finding a soulmate. It’s not just about ticking all the boxes or looking good on paper. It’s about how it connects with you and makes you feel. If you’re reading this article, you’re likely in search of a new project management software, and Jira may be one of your options. You’ve landed in the right place, as this article will delve into the following topics:

  • What is Jira?
  • The pros of using Jira
  • The cons of using Jira
  • A better alternative to Jira

What is Jira?

Jira is a widely used project management software developed by Atlassian. It offers a range of features such as issue tracking, Kanban boards, and custom workflows, making it particularly popular among IT and tech teams.

Pros of using Jira

To make things easier, here is the top 3 features Jira offers:

1. Issue Tracking System

One of the major strengths of Jira is its issue tracking system, which allows teams to create, prioritise, and assign tasks, while also tracking their progress. Here are some of the highlights of its system:

  • Real-time tracking of task progress and status.
  • Customisable filtering and sorting options to help manage task priority and due dates.
  • Tools for collaboration and communication around issues, such as comments and attachments.

These features make Jira’s issue tracking system a useful tool specifically for IT and tech teams that need to manage projects and ensure that everyone is working towards the same objectives, though that isn’t necessarily the case for other types of teams.

2. Agile Project Management

Jira is known for focusing particularly in agile project management. Agile project management is a methodology that emphasises flexibility and collaboration, with a focus on iterative, incremental progress. Jira offers several features that align with this approach, such as:

  • Customisable boards to provide a visual representation of the project’s status.
  • Backlog management features to help prioritise and plan work.
  • Provides tools for iterative, incremental progress towards project goals.

These features make Jira’s agile project management functionality suited for managing projects in a flexible and collaborative manner, though in practice it isn’t as simple and can get pretty complicated and frustrating to get started and adapt to it.

3. Customisable Workflows

Jira’s workflows can be customised to match the specific needs of a team or project, or at least that’s what it intends to do through features like:

  • Custom fields, statuses, and transitions to create workflows that reflect unique methodologies.
  • And automation of certain tasks and notifications to improve efficiency and keep everyone informed.

These features make Jira’s customisable workflows a powerful tool that can help teams to manage their projects more effectively, though the departments that seem to agree the most with this are IT and tech teams that are accustomed to even more complex and complicated software.

The cons of using Jira

Now, hold your horses. While Jira has many strengths, not everything is rose coloured as it seems. There are drawbacks that you should be aware of before committing:

1. Complicated User Interface

One of the biggest drawbacks of Jira is its complexity since it’s a highly customisable tool with many features and options, which can make it overwhelming for some users as it can:

  • Take time and effort to set up and configure the tool properly.
  • Find Jira’s interface cluttered and difficult to navigate.
  • Require significant training to use effectively, particularly for new users or those who are not familiar with agile project management methodologies.

Jira’s complexity can be a challenge for most users, particularly those who don’t work in the IT and tech departments. That’s why considering other alternatives such as morningmate, a workflow collaboration platform developed for all types of teams, can prove to be a better option as it bridges the gap between non-tech and tech teams to have a unified and streamlined workflow together.

morningmate’s intuitive design offers a familiar interface for everyone with its unique Work Feed system in which you can add different types of work posts that are neatly organised in chronological order so you can easily track your tasks and seamlessly engage with the entire team, all in a single workspace.

2. High Learning Curve

The learning curve associated with Jira’s platform is another potential drawback of the tool due to the mentioned complexities, which not only makes it laborious to properly set up and implement it, but also very time consuming to learn how to use it effectively:

  • The level of customization that Jira offers can make it difficult to determine which features and options are most relevant to a specific use case.
  • Some users may require additional training or support to fully understand the tool’s capabilities and how to use them effectively.

This means that onboarding new teammates require more effort than using regular office tools and there will always be a constant need to stay in touch with Jira’s support team to just figure things out as your workflow keeps growing and evolving, which ironically makes its “agile project management methodology” not as agile as it sounds with all the time your team will take to just build and update their workflow.

However, software like morningmate identifies all of these pain points and addresses them through a simple work post solution, which you can easily draft through its central toolbar, which offers all the essential core work tools natively without the need for third-party integrations and other complications. Whether it is:

  • An article post for references, protocols, and file attachments. 
  • An event post for physical or digital meetings, including location map or video conference links.
  • A To-do list with all the items, due dates, and their respective managers.
  • A poll for the team to cast their votes and give their feedback on a given subject.
  • Or a task post where you can plan, track, and manage every detail you need, including subtasks.

3. Expensive

Last but not least, the drawback of Jira is its high cost. While Jira does offer a free plan, this plan has limited features and is barely suitable for very small teams, if anything. For larger teams or organisations, the cost of Jira can be quite significant as:

  • The cost per user is currently the most expensive in the project management market.
  • It may require additional costs for third-party add-ons or integrations to fully meet the team’s needs.

So, if we do a quick calculation: To effectively use Jira with a robust set of tools, you would have to opt for a Premium plan, which is currently priced at $15.25 USD. However, aside from Jira’s plan payment, you would have to consider a third-party app like Slack to efficiently communicate with your team, which adds another $15.00 USD to your monthly payment per user. Bundling that up, you would already be paying $30.25 USD per month as a base, without considering other extra third-party tools not offered natively by Jira that your team needs for an effective workflow. That’s $363.00 USD a year per user, which is a lot just for one user when you compare it to morningmate’s pricing of $14.99 USD per user a month, totaling to $179.88 USD a year. Basically, with morningmate you would be paying half the price for a fully equipped all-in-one platform solution compared to Jira.

A Better Alternative to Jira

In conclusion, Jira offers a good project management platform, but that isn’t a very user-friendly solution unless you are in an IT or tech team and that lacks core native tools for agile task management that can be simply used by everyone. However, with morningmate, you don’t only get different workspace views that Jira doesn’t offer, but a unique user experience that feels familiar and easy as using a social media platform. Aside from having an impressively intuitive UI, it offers all the core functionalities you need for team collaboration such as real-time messaging through chat and comments, video call integrations with Zoom and Microsoft Teams, and even a task management tool that only takes 5 simple steps to set up.

We are barely scratching the surface on the powerful tool morningmate can be for your team. Check out all the other features it has to offer before you consider other workflow platforms. Not sure yet? Try morningmate for FREE and make a confident decision! Update your organisation’s old work system and start streamlining your workflow and saving money on inefficiencies.