10X: Create Work Item Links

In Jira Align, you can use the links functionality to sequence work items. It is used to create a link from one theme, epic, capability, feature, or story to another one to define that the work item cannot be started before the other one is finished. Additionally, on the visualization chart, you can see the items related to each other on the timeline with respective dates and milestones. The chart shows the relationships between the items that have the predecessors and successors for the item.

  • Predecessor. A theme, an epic, a capability, a feature, or a story that comes before another work item.
  • Successor. A theme, an epic, a capability, a feature, or a story that comes after another work item.

Note: You can only select work items you have access to.

The following relationships are available:

  • Story > story; story > feature; story > capability; story > epic; story > theme.
  • Feature > theme; feature > epic; feature > feature; feature > capability; feature > story.
  • Capability > theme; capability > epic; capability > capability; capability > feature; capability > story.
  • Epic > theme; epic > epic; epic > capability; epic > feature; epic > story.
  • Theme > story; theme > feature; theme > capability; theme > epic; theme > theme.

You can set up multiple predecessors and successors. Adding an item as a predecessor or successor to another item will automatically manage the links for both of them. This means that when item A is listed as a predecessor for item B, item B will be listed as a successor for item A automatically. Also, when item A is listed as a successor for item B, item B will be listed as a predecessor for item A automatically.

The same item cannot be set as a predecessor and a successor. The parent epic cannot be the predecessor or successor for the child feature or story. The child feature and story cannot be the predecessor or successor for the parent epic.

Important: Unlike dependencies, links do not provide the obligation or require any actions to be taken by anyone. They help to draw a picture of item interdependencies on various levels.

To create links:

  1. Select Program from the left menu bar.
  2. Under the Manage section of the menu bar, select Work Item Links; the Work Item Links page displays.
  3. On the toolbar (top-right of the page), click the Add Work Item Linkage button.
  4. Select the work item type from the corresponding drop-down menu, and then search for the specific work item in the search box. After you selected a work item, a slide-out panel appears.
  5. Select the portfolio and program from the corresponding drop-down menus.
  6. Add one or multiple theme, epic, capability, feature, or story predecessors.
  7. Add one or multiple theme, epic, capability, feature, or story successors.
  8. Click Save, and then click the View the Predecessors and Successors button to view the created links on the visualization chart.

Visualization chart

The main item is highlighted in blue. Use the toggles on the right to highlight predecessors or successors. The related stories appear in the sprints they are assigned to. The related themes, epics, capabilities, and features appear in the sprints based on the following rules:

  • For predecessors, if all child stories are assigned to sprints, the theme, epic, capability, or feature appears in the last sprint the stories are assigned to.
  • For successors, if all child stories are assigned to sprints, the theme, epic, capability, or feature appears in the first sprint the stories are assigned to.

Predecessors

Themes, epics, capabilities, features, and stories appear in the At Risk column based on the following rules:

  • A theme, a capability (at least one of its child stories or features), a story, a feature, or an epic (at least one of its child stories, features, or capabilities) is in the unassigned backlog OR
  • A theme, a capability (at least one of its child stories or features), a story, a feature, or an epic (at least one of its child stories, features, or capabilities) is assigned to the same sprint as the main item OR
  • A theme, a capability (at least one of its child stories or features), a story, a feature, or an epic (at least one of its child stories, features, or capabilities) is assigned to the sprint that comes after the sprint of the main item.

Successors

Themes, capabilities, epics, features, and stories appear in the Unassigned column based on the following rule:

  • If a theme, a capability (at least one of its child stories or features), a story, a feature, or an epic (at least one of its child stories or features) is in the unassigned backlog.

See also

Create Link Maps

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