Tools & Resources

5 Essential Jira Dashboard Gadgets to Maximize Productivity

Any project management tool, without its dashboarding capabilities is as good as a spreadsheet shared among the team members. Read that again!

What are Dashboards?

Technically speaking, Dashboards are pieces of information (usually digital, real-time reports) that succinctly surface the relevant & necessary information to help the users make right decisions & to keep them informed.

Without Dashboards, users will have to dig through a pile of information to find what they are looking for. As the team size grows, the pile of information continues to grow exponentially & finding the desired information becomes a major challenge. 

Thus, without Dashboards – the collaboration would crumble; deadlines will be missed & eventually the team’s productivity will take a hit. 

Jira Dashboard Gadgets

Of course, every team is different & thus the Dashboards they need are quite unique to their needs. So, it becomes impossible to pre-manufacture these one-size-fits-all Dashboards. That is where Jira Dashboard Gadgets come in. 

Atlassian’ project management tool Jira lets teams create & customize their own Dashboards. And it does that through Dashboard gadgets. Gadgets are small sections of information, configurable to present only the desired information & in a way that is easily digestible. That is, majority of the Jira dashboard gadgets offer configurations that will make them flexible to be used in various situations.

This article focuses on 5 such essential Jira dashboard gadgets that will help teams maximize transparency & ramp up productivity. Additionally, there is a bonus at the end where we talk about one of the gadgets available in our apps on the Atlassian marketplace.

Let’s get started.

Jira dashboard gadget 1 – Filter results

Fundamental building block in Jira is the issue (or ticket or items or whatever you call it). This gadget focuses on bringing out Jira issues that are of interest. Pre-configured filters are the underlying data source for this gadget. Pick a filter, decide what default or custom fields you want to see in the results & that’s it.

Filter results configuration

Use cases for this gadget can range from keeping a focus on work in progress for a team, or logged in user’s assigned issues & much more. This is what the result will look like.

Filter results output

Jira dashboard gadget 2 – Pie chart

If you need to see a visualization of your Jira issues based on a certain statistic, pie chart gadget will jump to your help. Here again, the underlying data source is going to be a pre-configured filter. And the only additional configuration you will need on this is the ‘Statistic type’. This statistic could be based on any issue field if the field is not – single line, multi-line or a date.

Pie chart configuration

Once configured, the result is an eye candy – neat looking pie chart visualization for your selected data source & statistic.

Pie chart output

Jira dashboard gadget 3 – Activity stream

Activity stream is a relatively less used gadget (just our intuition based on customer discussions) as compared to the others. However, it can add a ton of value for managers who are involved in multiple Jira projects. Just glance through the activities towards the end of each day & get to know the progress. It’s really that simple. With flexible configs, one can easily follow updates on a Jira project, on specific issue, by a specific user & combine them to drill down further. Immensely powerful.

Activity Stream Configuration

Result is that familiar feed like social networks (just without photos or videos :D).

Activity Stream Output

Jira dashboard gadget 4 – Jira issues calendar

This is one gadget that we use ourselves to a great outcome. We use Jira service management for our customer support activities. And one interesting metric that we always like to follow is the number of support ticket volume & their occurrence over a period of time. In its settings, Jira issues calendar dashboard gadget expects – you guessed it right, a pre-configured Jira filter. And then, the date field that it should put up for those issues in the calendar. In our case, we look at issues from our customer support project and focus on their created date.

Jira Issues Calendar Configuration

And the result is a sweet looking calendar with tiny green squares indicating issues created on that day. Just hover over any one of them & see the summary immediately.

Jira Issues Calendar Output

Jira dashboard gadget 5 – Issue statistics

This gadget is very much similar to the pie chart, the difference is how the information is presented. It takes in a pre-configured filter along with a statistic type and results in a bar chart. Here’s what the configuration looks like.

Issue statistics Configuration

When saved, the resulting bar chart will show the relevant information in a visual presentation.

Issue statistics output

The good thing about all 5 Jira dashboard gadgets discussed above is that wherever numbers are displayed as links, one can click on them & be navigated to the relevant list. That’s an easy way to drill down if the aggregated information is not sufficient to take any action.

(Bonus) Jira dashboard gadget 6 – My mentions

And the last one, as promised, is a gadget available from one of our apps on the Atlassian marketplace. The gadget is called ‘My mentions’. No guesses here. The gadget shows all the issues & their comments where the logged in user was tagged. No configurations needed, just add the gadget & everyone can start using it.

All mentions become a part of this ‘To do’ list. And thus, whenever a new comment is added mentioning you, it will appear in the ‘Incomplete’ list. Now, one can dismiss it if no actions are needed or snooze it to tackle it later on. You can even add a response comment from the gadget itself.

It goes above & beyond by letting you filter by comment creators.

My Mentions Output

Last word

In conclusion, Jira dashboard gadgets can play a pivotal role if used properly, in maximizing transparency & boosting productivity for your teams. Add to it the flexibility on offer & you have got a full package to build unique processes for your culture.

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