Optimizing JIRA Project Creation through Templates and Shared Schemes

When creating projects in JIRA, the tool tends to lead you down the path of creating fixed/canned projects based on the built-in workflows, issue types, field configurations, etc. For example, you can choose from scrum, kanban, or basic software development projects or basic project management, task management, or process management projects. Choosing one of these projects results in a simple/standard out-of-the-box set of issue types, workflows, and other configuration settings. However, each project that is created gets its OWN set of schemes for each of these. Organizations who have many projects that tend to follow a similar pattern will end up with many of the same schemes (workflow, issue type, notification, permission, etc.) which will make the process of making small changes across the board (applying to all projects or all projects of a particular type) an extremely laborious task.

To avoid this, you can use one of your existing projects that is representative (i.e. the best example) of how you expect a class of projects to operate and use that existing project as a “template”. You can even create a project that exists specifically for this purpose and name it “Project Type X Template” and create a Project Category called “Templates” and add the project to this category. If your schemes are named after the original “example” project you are using as a template, you should rename them. For example, the template based on a project named “KEY: Software Simplified Workflow Scheme” should be renamed to something like “Project Type X Workflow Scheme”. You should do this for all affected schemes (issue type, workflow, notification, field configuration, permission, etc.) and individual workflows that are expected to be included in your project template.

When the time comes to create a new project from this template, instead of selecting one of the canned project types (scrum, kanban, project mgmt, etc.), you can choose “create with shared configuration”, then select your “template” project, and then define your new project as you normally would. It will then create your new project with the same schemes that were used by the template project.

It is important to note that any changes made to any of the shared schemes will apply to ALL projects that use this scheme. If you want to make a change that applies to all of the projects of this type, you would simply make a change to any of the shared schemes. If you wanted to make a change to ONLY ONE of these projects, you would need to copy the affected scheme, name it appropriately, and make the change to the copied scheme only.


When you create a project from a shared configuration, it is important to note that boards will not be created. To create a board once you have created your project, you can navigate to boards, click “create board”, choose “for an existing project”, then select your project and the board type.

While there is no ability to use a “shared configuration” for boards, you can create templatized boards by copying an existing board and then changing the filter for the resulting board to reflect the target project for your new board.


Any issues in the template project will also not be created in the new project. If you want to have a canned set of standard issues that should be created for all new projects of a given type, you can export these issues to a CSV file and then import them into your new project.


There are a few add-ons that can facilitate the process of templatizing your projects. Here are a few recommended ones:


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