Haut de page

Tracking bugs in Jira: From incidents to fix with Exocet


Posted by
Christophe PROME

July 24, 2018

Despite all the effort you put into QA, as a software publisher you might introduce a bug when shipping a new version of your product. While your QA team missed this one, your customers did not. You start receiving incident reports on your service desk portal, all having the same root cause: this pesky bug.

Being prepared to handle this kind of situation will spare your team stress and reduce your customers’ frustration (they might even be impressed by how efficiently their request was handled).

At Valiantys Software, we’ve set-up a process to make sure that when bugs occur we’ll deal with them in a timely and transparent manner using our Marketplace app Exocet, which copies, links and syncs Jira issues. Here’s how we save time by automating bug creation, providing developers with a comprehensive overview of what the bug affects and updating all customers on the status of the bug they reported.

Creating a Jira Bug issue from a reported incident

Let’s say a new release has broken a feature of our product, and shortly afterwards the first customer raises a request on our Jira Service Desk support portal:

 

Our Level 1 agent responds immediately. In just one click, he confirms the bug, notifies the customer and creates the corresponding bug in our software development project. This is possible due to an Exocet Operation which clones the Incident as a Bug issue in our Development project within Jira Software. All the necessary information, such summary, description, comments and attachments are copied into the Bug issue.

 

Exocet automates creating Bug issues, thus reducing the risk of manual errors, helping agents save time while processing a new bug and enforcing our internal process.

Within the Bug issue, the Incident raised by the customer is visible in a table. All key information is visible: Summary, Reporter, Organization, Creation date and Status. This table is an Exocet data panel, a feature that allows Jira admins to customize the display of linked issues.

Linking incidents to the Bug issue in Jira

Since the feature impacted by this bug affects many customers, over the following hours several similar Incidents are raised.

 

As a Bug issue has already been created in our Development project in Jira Software, our agents have to link this issue to all the new requests raised on the portal.  This information is vital for our development team; the more context they have, the better they will understand the bug and the quicker they will fix it. Having customer requests linked to the corresponding Bug issues is interesting for the Product Manager, as it helps him prioritize the bugs in the backlog.

The standard way of linking issues in Jira is using the “Link issue” dialog, but it’s not easy to use, especially for non-technical users. You first have to select the link type among a list of ten to twenty links types and then search for the issues to link among thousands or more.

Exocet offers a handy alternative that spares our agents the need to spend time searching the right issue link type and provides a filtered view of the issues.

 

Here we use the “Link existing issue” feature of the Exocet data panel. When we click on the “Reference existing Incident” button, a window pops up. The window lists all Issues raised in our Jira Service Desk project of type “Incident” with an Open status. The agent can filter those issues by Key or Summary and pick those that he wants to link to the Bug issue. He does not have to select a link type, as this is already set for him.

This is a simple and elegant way to link issues – Jira users focus on the business part of their job and forget about the technical implementation of Jira.

Inform your customers when the bug is fixed with one comment

At Valiantys Software, we strongly believe in transparency. Thus we make sure to always keep customer in the know regarding the status of their request when they’ve raised an Incident on our support portal.

Doing so manually can be time-consuming, especially if you have a lot of Incident raised for the same bug. Instead of manually copying the status of a particular bug to all customers, we use Exocet to synchronize comments between the Bug issue and all related Incidents.

 

We use an Exocet synchronization to make sure all comments made on the Bug issue are pushed in each related Incident. Customers are thus live-updated when a bug is fixed.


Bugs are an inevitable part of software development. The way you handle them can set you apart from the competition and help you maintain a trusted relationship with your customers. Automating how you manage bugs in Jira is a smart way to make sure you’re reactive.

How do you manage customer request flooding? Let us know by posting a comment below.

If you feel that Exocet might bring relief to your support and development teams? Give it a try today for free!