How to Create a Custom Dashboard in Jira using JQL Queries

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The dashboard is the main display that you see when you log into Jira Software. Though Jira out-of-the-box comes with a default system dashboard, it doesn’t show a whole lot of information. 

Fortunately, Jira is renowned for its customizability, which means that you can create multiple, customized dashboards. And when personalized well, you can quickly get a status update on all the projects and teams that you’re managing. Perfect for busy project managers like yourself. 

To truly flex the potential of customized Jira dashboards, you must leverage Jira Query Language (JQL). It’s Jira advanced search feature that allows you to accurately retrieve specific Jira project or issue data to be displayed on the custom dashboard. 

Continue reading to learn how to create a custom dashboard in Jira using JQL queries. 

Different Types of Dashboards in Jira

But first, a quick overview of the different types of dashboards in Jira. There are two types of dashboards in Jira, the system and custom dashboards. 

When you first launch Jira software, you’ll probably come across a shared or public screen that has basic information like Activity Stream and issues that are Assigned to Me. This is the system dashboard, and it can only be edited by a Jira admin. 

A screenshot that shows a Jira system dashboard.
That’s what the system dashboard, AKA the default landing page for your Jira instance, looks like.

The second type is a custom Jira dashboard. It’s one that can be fully personalized by you using JQL queries, gadgets, and layouts. With the help of specific JQL queries, you can search and select the exact Jira issues that you want to monitor. You can then save those JQL queries as filters and insert them into suitable gadgets. Layouts are the number of columns on a dashboard. 

A screenshot that shows a custom Jira dashboard.
That’s what a custom Jira dashboard looks when issues within an active sprint cycle are grouped based on their statuses for a clearer view of project progress. 

How to Create a Custom Jira Dashboard Using JQL Queries 

Though you can personalize a dashboard without advanced Jira search and filters, you may not have as many customization options or as much flexibility. So, creating a truly custom Jira dashboard boils down to the JQL queries that you’re saving as filters to be inserted into gadgets. Check out the step-by-step guide below.

How to Create a Custom Jira Dashboard to Monitor Project Blockers

1. From your system dashboard screen, click on the ellipsis in the upper right corner and click on Create a dashboard. Name it Project Blocker and hit save.

2. Go to Jira issue navigator (AKA issue search) and switch to advanced search to use JQL. 

3. If you want to find all the blocking issues within an active sprint for a single project, key in the JQL query below. Just replace the sample project name with your actual project name. As for the status, make sure to use the one that denotes a blocker in your workflow. 

project = "Sample" AND status = "Blocked"

4. Alternatively, let’s say that you want to keep track of issues with blocking subtasks; use the following JQL query. Such Jira issues cannot be completed until the subtasks are cleared out of the way. Remember that the JQL query below is a search extension—meaning it won’t appear automatically in Jira out-of-the-box. But you can easily access it using Jira search extension apps like JQL Search Extensions for Jira

subtaskStatus = "Blocked" AND project = "Sample"

5. Save the JQL query as a filter and name it Project Blocker.

6. Go to your newly created dashboard, add the Filter Results gadget, and insert the saved Project Blocker filter. 

You should now be able to monitor project blockers through that custom Jira dashboard. 

A screenshot of a custom Jira dashboard with a gadget that shows a list of Jira project blockers.
That’s what a custom Jira dashboard to monitor project blockers looks like. 

By default, custom dashboards are set to Private and will only be visible to the dashboard owner/creator. Other permission levels include Project, Group, My Organization, and Public.

If you want to share your custom dashboard, make sure that you have Share dashboards and filters global permission. Once you’ve done that, remember to also share your saved JQL filters with the relevant parties. 

When you’re managing projects in Jira, it helps to master advanced Jira search and filters. Check out this blog post to learn how to create and manage a Jira filter.

Leverage JQL Queries for Better Jira Dashboards

Customizing your Jira dashboard using JQL queries will enable you to efficiently track projects’ progress and team performance. To learn more about advanced Jira search, check out The Essential Spellbook to Unleash Advanced Jira Query Language (JQL) Magic

On the other hand, if you find crafting complex JQL queries to be too consuming, then Jira search extension add-ons come in handy. They’re additional JQL functions and keywords not available in native Jira that can take your search relevance to the next level.

Try our very own JQL Search Extensions for Jira and create better Jira dashboards! 

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