Submitted by Matthew Vore
To support the ongoing operational success of the University, two years ago Enterprise Applications implemented the use of ServiceNow Recurring Jobs to proactively trigger tickets for repeated scheduled activities. These included both periodic (daily, weekly, monthly) tasks and also those related to larger projects like fiscal year end and student registration support. The cutover to the new ServiceNow instance presented us with an opportunity to evaluate our needs and improve the management and reporting for our operational tasks. The decision was made to manage those tasks through our existing Atlassian platform, the Jira Task Management Tool, and utilizing “The Scheduler” add-on. Work began last year to enter those tasks and supporting documentation into the Jira tool, and our official cutover coincided with the cutover to the new instance of ServiceNow
This new tool provides expanded capabilities to schedule, categorize, search, and report on a variety of newly-available fields without the need to request customization to ServiceNow which does not align with the strategic direction of that platform. These advanced features allow for the development and use of team dashboards and Kanban boards to more effectively manage team workloads. “Parent” Scheduled Issues have been set up, and “child” Sub-Tasks detailing all related activities, were created under them. The “parent” issue is created based on a trigger date that is set using a cron scheduler and will spin up all related sub-tasks, each with its own dynamic planned start date, due date, and end date. As sub-tasks are spun up, filters using specific components and labels allow the tasks to populate on team dashboards. This enables the team leads as well as members to monitor both team and individual workloads based on these various dates. Jira also includes the ability to view issues by planned start date in a calendar format for a “quick view” of team workload.
The next phase of the Enterprise Applications operations Jira rollout will be the implementation of the “Email This Issue” add-on. This will enable the team to facilitate communications with customers directly through the Jira tasks themselves, while documenting, archiving, and tracking the progress of each task, maintaining the entire task history all in one place.
If you have questions regarding EA’s use of Jira for our scheduled operations tasks, please reach out to Mark Craig, Matt Vore, Sarah Storz, or Sue Johns.