This post describes the steps necessary for customising the Issue Types on your own instance of Jira. The Jira documentation on Atlassian’s own Confluence Wiki is very comprehensive but I found that it was a little verbose for each action and yet at the same time it doesn’t actually indicate the full set of steps you may need to go through in order to get everything working as you would expect.

In larger organisations like mine where there are lots of teams running their day-to-day operations through the same instance of Jira, you have to be really careful not to make changes that will adversely affect other team’s Jira Projects. I feel that the way in which Atlassian’s documentation for Jira is written adds to the fear of messing things up for your colleagues as there is no clear indication of what the consequences are for each action so I’ll try my best to explain this as clearly as I can as I go along.

The actual process for managing each aspect of Issue Types, Field Configurations and Screens in Jira is actually a little convoluted in my humble opinion. I’ve come to appreciate that highly configurable platforms like this typically struggle to offer simple user-friendly configuration tools and often provide even more convoluted documentation to support administration. Jira is far from the worst in this space. The process isn’t filled with the kinds of quirks you’ll find when you are trying to administer SharePoint Site Collections for example but there is still room for improvement. Hopefully this post will shine a little light on the parts of the process that you may have concerns about.

If you or your team use Jira a lot during your working day (or you want to start using it more) then there is no replacement for sitting down and going through the Jira Administrator’s Guide from Atlassian themselves. I’m not trying to replace that documentation with this post, i’m just trying to summarise the set of steps you need to take and the order in which you need to tackle them so that you may feel more comfortable with doing it yourself.

Click on each of the sections below to expand the instructions for each step:
Note: For all of the steps below, you will need to be logged in as a Jira Administrator.

You cannot delete Issue Types that Jira can’t find a suitable alternative to migrate issues of that Issue Type to.
You are told how many issues are of that particular Issue Type when you attempt to delete it
You can’t delete the Default Issue Type Scheme
Need to do Screens
need to do custom fields