How to Write Effective User Stories in Jira

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Jira is a simple to use tool for organizing work and is quitfe popular with software developers teams, especially the teams which are using the Agile or Scrum methodologies for software development as the Jira offers full support for agile methodology and can integrate with the software application.

In Jira, user stories are simple and brief representations or descriptions of a feature in a developing system derived from the perspective of the user, who requires the new feature added to the application. The user can be the customer paying for the solution or just the person who uses the system. 

A typical, Jira user storyJira user story follows a sample like the one given below – 

As a <User / Consumer>, I must be able to <function / goal of required feature> so that I can <benefit of the newly requested feature or functionality>.

Remember, Jira user stories are required to be informative enough to let a Jira Certified developer or the team of developers, can easily understand the user story, and can identify the required feature, and hence can let the developer or the team design, and build the specified functionality, requirement or feature. 

In an agile environment of software development, Jira user stories are the most used method of communication to communicate the specific feature/function requirements with the Jira developer and developer team.

Many times, software development teams write user stories on index cards or sticky notes and later post them on a scrum board or an information radiator. But for this article, we will only stick to using the Jira platform for maintaining records of various different user stories and will see how to use the platform in the best way possible in order to ensure the best communications between the members of the development team and all other internal/ external stakeholders.

Importance of Writing Effective Jira User Stories

Listed down are all the crucial factors that represent why writing an effective Jira user story is an important part of the software development phase.

1 ) The user story helps the development team in better identifying the needs of the end-user. The Jira Certification developers are required to know the larger picture of the project so they can focus on resolving the major issues or the challenges for the real user while developing the project and doing their list of daily tasks.

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2 ) User stories in the Jira platform can promote teamwork. When the whole team knows the ultimate goal of the project, it allows the whole team members to work closely with each other in brainstorming and developing ideas on how they can meet the end – goal.

3 ) It helps in maintaining the momentum of the project. The Jira user story gives a clear direction to the team on their work, making the project momentum smooth.

Who is the One Responsible for Writing the User Stories?

Before writing a Jira user story, it is important to know who is going to write the user story and When it should be created. Typically, the product owners are the ones responsible for writing the majority of Jira user stories, as they are also the ones responsible to keep the product backlog loaded with tasks. 

But remember that the user stories are created in order to increase communication and the sharing of ideas throughout the development team. All the team members in the project development team are involved in the project. The user stories are typically written at the very start of a project as if prepared in advance, the user stories can help to ensure the smooth momentum of the project from the beginning to the end.

How to Create and Write a User Story in the Jira Platform?

In the Jira platform, you can create a new user story, by selecting the option to create a new issue, but you must select the type “Story”. The user story can then be written in the summary field, available on the new issue creation screen just below the issue type option.

While creating the user story as a new issue in the Jira platform, one must keep a few points in mind. These are as follows

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1 ) The user story must satisfy the INVEST criteria, which simply means that the user story should be 

  • Independent (the user story should be independent of all other user stories. The user story should be able to exist and remain meaningful on its own).
  • Negotiable (The user story does not specify the feature but is there to start the conversation among the team and other stakeholders)
  • Valuable (It should create value for the business value)
  • Estimate (user story should estimate the requirements to a good approximation)
  • Small (User story should be a brief explanation of the matter)
  • Testable

2 ) User stories are required to prioritize the user needs first. They should be user-centric and should focus on the user’s needs, preferences and specifications. 

3 ) User stories should be able to demonstrate the value that the product you are working with can provide to the users of the product.

4 ) To give a description of specific features or a set of specifications is not the purpose of a user story. It is only created to facilitate the discussion between the relevant stakeholders and give them clarity regarding what are the end goals that must be achieved. 

3 C’s of an Effective User Story

The three C’s of an effective user story are as follows – 

1 ) Card – 

“Card” simply means that the user story must be brief, such that the content can fit a business card size paper. 

2 ) Confirmation – 

The confirmation criteria mean writing the acceptance criteria of the user for a specific feature. It is the most controversial part of the 3C.

3 ) Conversation – 

As mentioned earlier, the only purpose of the user story is to facilitate the conversation between all the relevant stakeholders in the project.

Conclusion

The user stories created with Jira can help you identify end-user requirements, maintain the project momentum, and promote teamwork for better efficiency. Hope! This article made you more aware than you were before about User Stories in Jira and helped you achieve better efficiency in projects.

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