Integrating Jira with Ally allows any updates on linked Jira user-stories or Epics to automatically track progress on Ally OKRs. This makes for a powerful setup because it ensures your OKR process is not waiting on manual check-ins and any progress is updated real-time on Ally.

Here are a couple of examples where teams see the benefit of the integration with Jira:

  1. A Product Manager links her Objective (‘Ship feature Email Campaigns’) with an Epic in Jira. As stories within the Epic get done, the Objective gets closer to it’s goal. 
  2. One Engineering team resolves to fix 20 bugs in a quarter. They link their Objective to an Epic under which all bugs get filed, and set the target of their KPI success metric to 20. Ally ensure that even when the number of bugs filed under the Epic keeps growing, the Objective has hit its goal as soon as 20 bugs are closed. 

Setting up 

Admin can set up the Jira integration on Ally. To do so:

  1. Navigate Ally’s integrations page through Admin > Integrations.
  2. ‘Enable’ the Jira Integration.
  3. Click on ‘New Connection’ and in the popup that follows, add the URL of your Jira account, your username and password.

   4. Click ‘Next’ to finish the setup

While in most cases one connection is enough, Ally allows you to connect with multiple Jira instances. Click ‘New connection’ to add another instance. You can add names to your connections to differentiate them. These names are displayed to members when they link their OKRs to Jira stories.

Using Jira integration

Once the setup is complete, members can link the success of their OKRs directly to stories or Epics in Jira.

  1. While creating an Objective or Key Result, click on ‘Add an integration’
  2. From the list of integrations, pick Jira

   3. Next, select the Connection, if multiple exist.

   4. Add a JQL query to match any issues that would relate to the  Objective or Key Result. This also means that as more issues in Jira match the query, they keep getting linked to the success of the Objective or Key Result.

A JQL query can be copied from Jira. Search for issues you want to link to your Objective using available filters on Jira. Next, click on the ‘Advanced’ option and Jira automatically converts your search to a JQL query. You can copy and paste the query string into your integration with Ally.

The JQL query linked to the Objective or Key Result can be edited at any time. This leads to a recalculation of current progress.

An example

Let’s see an example of how the integration would work.

We’ll pick the example mentioned earlier:  A Product Manager, Dana, links her Objective (‘Ship feature Email Campaigns’) with an Epic in Jira. A simple JQL query used to set up the link could be: "Epic Link" = AE-786

If the Epic has 10 stories, owned by different designers, engineers and testers in the team, the progress of Dana’s Objective would update every time one of the 10 stories gets closed. For instance, when 3 stories get closed in Jira, Ally would automatically update the progress of the Objective to 30%. If an eleventh story gets added under the Epic, this progress gets re-calculated to 27%.

When an Objective or Key Result is linked to Jira, members can see the Jira icon next to the progress bar indicating there is a connection. 

The colors of the progress bars indicate the status of the Objective. 

  • If the progress is 0-25% less than expected progress at any point in time, the status is Behind (orange)
  • If the progress is over 25% less than expected progress at any point in time, the status is At-Risk (red)

Ally pulls in new updates from Jira every 24 hours. However, you can also manually refresh to pull in any new changes.

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