ZenTao vs. Jira 6 : story, issue and epic

2018-05-21 11:02:00

Jira claims itself as the #1 software development tool used by agile teams, so it is an Agile tool. ZenTao is a Scrum tool and also supports other frameworks of agile, such as Kanban. In ZenTao, the concept of the User Story is adopted to describe the requirements from the customer. In Jira, every task, bug, enhancement request; basically anything to be created and tracked via JIRA is considered an Issue.

image: ZenTao->Kanban

Epic vs Story

A story is one simple narrative; a series of related and interdependent stories make up an epic. The same is true for your work management, where the completion of related stories leads to the completion of an epic. The stories tell the arc of the work completed while the epic shares a high-level view of the unifying objective.

In an agile team, stories are something the team can commit to finishing within a one or two-week sprint. Developers would work on dozens of stories a month. Epics, in contrast, are few in number and take longer to complete. Teams often have two or three epics they work to complete each quarter.

If your company was launching rockets into space and wanted to improve the streaming service for your launches, you might structure your stories like the ones below.

Examples of an agile story:

  • iPhone users need access to a vertical view of the live feed when using the mobile app.
  • Desktop users need a “view fullscreen” button in the lower right-hand corner of the video player.
  • Android users need to be linked to Apple store.

The above stories are all related, and could all be considered individual tasks that drive toward the completion of a larger body of work (an epic). In this case, the epic might be “Improve Streaming Service for Q1 Launch.” Organizing work into stories and epics also helps you and your team communicate effectively within the organization. If you were reporting your team’s progress to the Head of Engineering, you’d be speaking in epics. If you were talking to a colleague on your development team, you’d speak at the story level.

In Jira, an Issue can be
  • Sub-Task − This is the sub-task of an issue. In a logged issue, there can be different tasks to resolve it, which are called as sub-tasks.

  • Bug − A problem that impairs or prevents the functions of the product.

  • Epic − A big user story that needs to be broken down. Created by JIRA Software - do not edit or delete.

  • Improvement − An improvement or enhancement to an existing feature or task.

  • New Feature − A new feature of the product, which is yet to be developed.

  • Story − A user story. Created by JIRA Software - do not edit or delete.

  • Task − A task that needs to be done to achieve team’s goal.

It is much simpler in ZenTao. In Product module, users create stories; in project module, users report and resolve bugs; in QA module, users perform test tasks.

Besides, ZenTao divides the complex project management process into four major items: story, task, bug, and case, and supports the whole flow by these four items.


1. https://www.atlassian.com/agile/project-management/epics-stories-themes

2. https://www.tutorialspoint.com/jira/jira_issue_types.htm

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