Real-world JIRA portfolio usage?

Last post 04:52 pm November 14, 2019
by Michel NIEL
5 replies
01:55 pm June 1, 2017



I've been looking around on the web to try to find an actual, real, use case of using JIRA portfolio for Scrum teams. 

I've been trying to use JIRA portfolio for 2-3 months now and I just have found it utterly useless. Yes, I've watched the walkthroughs, but in practice it just doesn't work at all. 

Can anybody point me to a resource that explains a real company using this product in a way that is more complex than "I have 5 developers on a single project and I put the work in JIRA and assigned epics, story points and release names". :)


Thanks in advance!


01:26 pm June 2, 2017

Our product owners have tried using it to forecast when a given feature will be completed. There were a few glitches in the way it fit PBIs into sprints which lead to incorrect results. If that's what you want to use it for (and I see little other uses for it on a Scrum team), then you might as well just use Excel or Google Sheets and do the calculation by hand. Portfolio is expensive.

Also, if you have multiple teams working on a product, drawing PBIs from the same product backlog, and with parallel sprints, Portfolio will not allow you to select an active sprint for each team and generally does a very poor job of managing this kind of setup.

09:05 pm June 8, 2017

This is great. I came here to ask a similar question. 

I have the impression that even in Atlassian they don't clearly know how to sell Portfolio. 

IMHO, it is useful in forming the picture of what backlog looks like at a very high level in a hierarchical way. But we end up in a prioritized Epic list that we can act on, not a treeview of everything that are in the company's roadmap.

Maybe in multi-team/multi-product organizations there's some use for it, but not only I'm losing interest, but I refuse to use it when it wants to manage resources and timelines à la MS Project. It wants to be too rigid for an agile operation. 

So for me it's a roadmapping tool to build a higher level backlog for strategists. It facilitates the conversation with certain stakeholders at this level, and build a "product wishlist". Anything more than that, I'm not sure. And I'm here to see how others (if any) are using it. 

10:48 pm June 12, 2017

Look at this:…

They are supposedly experts in JIRA Portfolio, but if you read the article, you see that they are putting lipstick on MS Project. What's modern (let alone "agile") in the approach outlined above? 

01:34 pm June 13, 2017

It looks pretty ugly, I'll have to admit.   Keep in mind that the article is written by a consulting firm on behalf of the product - who knows what their motivation is?


I think you nailed it with the MS Project comparison.   At best, it looks like it might be able to support iterative development, but there is little about it that resembles Scrum or Agile, despite using those words in the article.


Perhaps the tool has some value from a PMO perspective if it can integrate with JIRA and present a holistic overall picture of product and project (epic/release) progress, but it sounds like the cost is much too prohibitive to account for that benefit.

10:14 am November 14, 2019


We are currently using Jira with a simple model: One Jira Project for each Product in our domain of activity.

We are considering the possibility to use Portfolio for Jira to manage Business Projects which have impact on several Products and consequently on several Jira Projects

Does anyone have return on experience in this area? I'm seeing a lot of scepticism around Porfolio for Jira.

Thanks for any advice on this subject