Build and customize strategic canvases (Jira Align labs)


The old navigation will be removed from Jira Align in early 2024.
Learn more about the upcoming changes

The canvas page is a strategic management and lean startup tool that lets you lay out an organizational or planning model using themed blocks or sections. Within each block, you can create block items — snippets of rich-text with a status drop-down — to document requirements, goals, attributes, and other free-form content. Like a physical canvas, block items act as “sticky notes” within each larger block.

The canvas page is part of Jira Align Labs. Additional enhancements will be made in future releases. The legacy business model canvas page will continue to be available in Jira Align until the new canvas page achieves feature parity and exits Labs.

To access the Canvas page:

If you’re using the new navigation:

  1. Select Strategy in the top navigation bar.
  2. On the sidebar, select More items in the list of page options.
  3. Select Canvas (labs); the canvas page displays.

If you’re using the old navigation:

  1. Select Enterprise from the left Nav menu.
  2. Under the Manage section, select Canvas (labs); the canvas page displays.

View an existing canvas

Select the Open Existing Canvas button from the upper-right corner of the page.

Select one of the highlighted names to open the canvas. Use the trashcan icon to delete a canvas. IMPORTANT – There is no undo for deleting an exiting canvas.

Create a new canvas

When you first visit the page, you’ll be given the option to create a new canvas.

To create a new canvas, enter the name, and select one of the template options from the drop-down:

  • Blank Template – create a completely new canvas from scratch
  • Portfolio Canvas
  • Lean Canvas
  • Business Model Canvas
  • Process Flow Canvas
  • Agile Release Train Canvas

Select the Create new Canvas button. Your new canvas will display and can be edited further.

Add and edit blocks

The large blocks, or sections of the page can be modified in name, size, color, position, and symbol.

Drag a block with your mouse to change its position:

Click to play animation

To resize the shape of a block, hover until the edit menu displays in the bottom-right corner. Hold down and drag the Resize icon to change the width and height:   

Click to play animation

Quickly change the name of a section by clicking on the existing name. You can also change the name and background color of a section through the Edit icon found when hovering: 

Click to play animation

Add new blocks via the Add Block button at the top of the page.

Remove blocks and any block items within via the Trashcan icon found when hovering over a block:

Important: There is no undo for this deletion.

Select a block’s current icon in the upper-right corner to change it. A pop-up window displays with available icon choices:

Add and edit block items

Block items describe goals or actions taken related to the block. A lightweight rich-text editor is provided to give you the ability to create headings, emphasis, and bulleted/numbered lists. Select the Add icon when hovering over a block to add a new block item.

Use the Status drop-down to indicate the status of the block item. When using the note view of the page, status will color the note icon that represents the block item, according to your state color settings.

Enter a URL into the Link field to link the block item with an intranet resource, document, external webpage, or Jira Align work item. Use this field to provide more context.

Click on any block item inside of a block to reopen the editor window.

Toggle views

Two views are available on the page. Use the Toggle View button in the upper-right corner to change between full view and note view modes:

Full view displays by default, the first time you access or create a canvas. The contents of block items will display inside of blocks with a vertical scrollbar.

Note view displays icons that represent each block item. The icons will be color-coded according to the setting in the item’s Status field, and your state color settings.

More Actions menu

Additional actions are available within the More Actions drop-down found at the top of the page:

  • Edit Canvas – Change the canvas name.
  • Delete Canvas – Remove the canvas from Jira Align. Note: There is no undo for this action.
  • Create New Canvas – Create a new canvas. Enter a name and select a canvas template or blank.


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