Issue tracking software and services generally perform the functions of tracking project tasks, bugs, and other customer-facing interactions to completion. This may be completely internal to the organization or include a help desk, allowing for end-user interaction. Depending on an agency or organization’s development or support structure—and required feature set—issue tracking software can include Agile or Waterfall project management tools and automation. Most services include API access, allowing custom integration to be written.
Pantheon users may have multiple sites in different stages of the development lifecycle, and issue tracking software is helpful in keeping work, customers, and internal teams organized. Each site can be tracked separately, or entire organizations can be managed centrally within the issue tracking software. Sites within each organization can be easily tagged in the Pantheon dashboard according to department, project status, or any other relevant factor.
Jira Software is designed for issue tracking during the planning and development phases of a Drupal or WordPress website build. It is part of the Atlassian suite of products—which includes HipChat and Bitbucket—although it is widely used as a standalone application. It is tailored to teams using an Agile framework, but task workflows can be extensively customized. Jira Software can be hosted internally or used as a service on the cloud.
Jira Service Desk is a help desk, ideal for websites or applications which have moved to the support and maintenance phase. New issues can be opened by website owners, end users, or internal teams, and connected to Jira Software issues when appropriate. Service Desk handles incidents, problems, and change management, e.g. core or contrib updates; and can be used by organization who offer additional IT-related services according to Service Level Agreements (SLA).
As part of a website’s initial planning phase, or during an ongoing feature sprint, issues or tasks can be created and assigned in Jira. By integrating Jira directly with a Pantheon or external code repository, such as Atlassian’s Bitbucket, a developer can work on Drupal or WordPress issues and the relevant code changes will be updated automatically in Jira, keeping project managers and stakeholders informed. Once the site is launched, ongoing feature requests or bug reports can be captured in Service Desk and either handled by support or routed to a development team.
Pivotal Tracker is an Agile project management application, that allows Agile stories to be broken down into issues and moved from backlog to active development. Stories can estimated, prioritized, and marked complete when finished. Stories can be automatically closed and deployed, or features can be released after the Product owner acceptance. Pivotal Tracker measures project velocity automatically based on the rate stories are completed.
Pivotal Tracker can listen to either the Pantheon repository or another connected external repository for changes. As developers pull items from Pivotal Tracker to work on, the changes are monitored by Pivotal Tracker and connected to the issues.
Trello is a popular, simple Agile project management and issue tracking service. Trello boards can be created and customized according to a development team’s workflow. Issues are recorded on cards and placed in columns of the board in a very scrum-like user interface.
Drupal or WordPress agencies can use Trello as a lightweight project management and issues tracking tool. GitHub integration with Trello is simple for sites with external upstream repositories.
Asana is a popular project management tool which works well for Waterfall projects, which usually move in a linear fashion from discovery to planning to implementation. In a typical scenario, Drupal or WordPress site development is broken down into phases, with milestones and tasks, that are assigned to developers, designers, and other team members. There is a rich interface for comments and notifications, and its flexibility and ease of use make it popular for non-development related projects, as well.
Asana uses Unito, an intermediate service, to connect with other applications and services, such as GitHub and Pantheon. Additionally, its full featured API can be used with Pantheon’s Quicksilver hooks to update or close existing issues upon commit to the Pantheon repository.