Human Resource Management with Jira

How to manage human resources with Jira

There are countless tools for managing human resources. It is usually important that they are easy to implement and can be used by all employees in HR management as quickly as possible. But new tools usually require onboarding, training or additional know-how. But what if your company already uses Jira? Then it makes sense to use the flexibility of Jira in the area of human resources or applicant management as well. 


Jira - The all-purpose weapon in process and project management

In companies, a large number of tools are usually used. These usually not only tear a hole in the monthly budget, but must also be able to be used by employees. Due to the complexity of all the apps used, it often makes little sense to introduce new tools for each area. 

But what if your company already uses Jira or Jira Service Management for project management or the digitalization of business processes? 

You already know what Jira can be used for and your employees and teams use it every day and know how to use it. 

This is exactly when it makes sense to consider using Jira or Jira Service Management as a tool for managing all HR-related processes.

The question that arises is: Does Jira offer all the necessary functions to map and manage my human resources processes and projects?

Why is Jira perfect as a human resource management tool?

Jira software was originally launched as an IT project management tool and continuously expanded with additional options. From a tool that was mainly used in IT, a tool has finally emerged with the help of numerous plugins, integrations and updates with which pretty much any type of projects and processes can be mapped. 

Human Resource Process Automation with Jira

Automations: Save time on repetitive tasks

In Jira or Jira Service Management, you as an HR manager can easily create a project (e.g. applications) and configure it according to your needs. Surely you already know Kanban or SCRUM boards in which you can display different statuses of project steps. 

Automatic notifications - email, Slack, Microsoft Teams

Now, when a new application comes in, a simple automation can be used to send a notification to the applicant via email, and you as the HR manager will receive a notification in your favorite internal communication tool like Slack or Microsoft Teams.

Manual mails are now a thing of the past. The cool thing is that the mails can be saved as templates and personalized with your branding.

E-mail templates for automatic notifications

But wait. That's not all that's possible with automations. For example, if the applicant forgets to enter his or her salary. You can simply give the Jira ticket the status "salary unknown" and the applicant will receive a notification and a request to provide their salary request. 

What kind of automatic notifications can be created:
  • Acknowledgement of receipt of the application
  • Answering open questions
  • Status dependent mails: received, rejected, open questions, invitations to interview etc.
  • Reminder / Follow Up Mails
  • Notification of the HR Manager if applications are not processed
Automatic change of responsibilities and the associated project in the event of a status change

Of course, the application process is only a small part of human resources. After that, there are usually onboardings, employee satisfaction surveys, offboardings, etc.

These processes can also be organized and digitized with the help of Jira. For example, the moment the applicant has successfully gone through the application process, a Jira ticket can be transferred to a separate project for onboardings and, if necessary, the responsible employee can be changed automatically. 

Since the Jira ticket is now in another project (onboarding), it or the new employee goes through further steps in the Human Resources process. Here, too, further automatisms can be configured in Jira to digitize certain process steps. 

Further possible automation and digitalization of the HR process:
Jira Authorization Management
Approval processes: Identity Access Management (IAM)

Not every employee needs the same permissions and shares in your company. New employees probably need access to the most important communication tools like Slack, email or CRM systems like HubSpot. For employees from HR or Marketing, on the other hand, it usually doesn't make sense to have clearance for software development tools. 

Or your company uses Jira for all projects and Confluence for documentation. Access restrictions can be added here as well. 

With the concrete automations, every stakeholder always knows which employee needs which approvals without you having to write even one email yourself. 

Want to learn more about Identity & Access Management? You can find out more about our IAM solution here. here.

Automatic time tracking with Jira and Tempo

Another essential tool in many companies is the recording of employees' working hours in order to draw conclusions about performance and identify potential for improvement. For this you can use the Jira plugin Tempo and establish an automated time tracking system in your company.

Further functions using the example of onboarding

As an HR Manager, you will of course have other tasks at the Onboarding to do. New employees often need a laptop and other equipment to work. That's why Jira Tickets can be customized to notify multiple departments when the status of the Jira Ticket changes.

In our example, a notification is sent to the IT department, which can then immediately start ordering the hardware and subsequently give their "OK" in the ticket and attach a proof of the hardware order. 

A similar procedure is possible in this case for authorization management. With a status change of Jira tickets, all involved stakeholders are automatically informed. As you can see, the possibilities for digitizing your human resources process with Jira or Jira Service Management are almost limitless and can be tailored specifically to your requirements.

Digitized Human Resource Process in Jira and Kanban Board

Map HR workflows in Jira

Of course, the above-mentioned procedures or processes do not just stand there in space, but are mapped in Jira (Service Management) as workflows, which can then be visualized in the form of a Kanban Board. 

This way you can always keep track of all active tickets and make sure you don't miss any new applicants or forget important steps in the further onboarding process. 

However, workflows in Jira offer even more advantages. For one, they can be configured in such a way that, for example, all necessary steps must always be processed before an applicant / employee moves on in the process. It would be conceivable, for example, that new employees may only receive their equipment after signing their contract, or that applicants should only be invited to an appointment in the office after a telephone screening. 

In addition, it is possible that a ticket status can only be changed (e.g. onboarding completed) if all involved agents or departments have processed the ticket. Of course, such dependencies can be configured flexibly and adapted to existing company processes and workflows.

Data protection and security in the human resources process

Personal data and security of IT systems continue to be among the most important topics for many companies in 2021.

Personal and private data (address, date of birth, bank details, etc.) is handled on a daily basis, especially in the personnel sector. These require special protection, must not be leaked under any circumstances and must follow certain legal regulations. 

With Jira (Service Management), for example, applicant data is automatically deleted within the legal obligation and are thus no longer visible to the company. However, Atlassian's software also offers important security precautions for the IT infrastructure for active employees. 

Due to the fact that projects in Jira can only be authorized persons, sensitive data can be protected from uninvolved persons in the company. 

DSGVO & GDPR compliance

Many companies receive applications directly through their own website and use Forms. With Jira, we use the so called "Jira" for this. issue collector to achieve the same result. The provided data are transmitted on the one hand via a provided SSL certificate On the other hand, the Jira Issue Collector is protected by an additional level (Encryption), which encrypts all sent emails. Furthermore, the Issue Collector no cookies or data collected for marketing purposes. This means that all collected data GDPR and GPDR in accordance with the data protection laws, stored and deleted.

To learn how to add the Jira Issue Collector to your website, check out our Guide.

Reporting & OKR

As an HR manager, you probably have to deal with reports and OKRs on a regular basis, present your results in regular meetings and conduct feedback sessions with employees. In any case, it's time-consuming and annoying to create manual reports. This is where the Tempo plugin comes in again. With it, you can automatically create performance reports at any time, e.g. to track which employee has worked on which tasks for how long. 

With the integrated notification function within Jira, you as an HR manager can then directly create feedback meetings and exchange information with the individual employees and, if necessary, jointly design a more efficient distribution of tasks.

Integrations and plugins: Job Portals, Microsoft Teams, Slack, HubSpot and own website

To simplify communication between all the people involved, it is possible to add integrations or plugins to Jira (Service Management). This allows an interface to the most commonly used communication tools such as Slack, Microsoft Teams or your email service to be set up.

Plugins for external tools

Slack for Jira

With Slack for Jira, you'll be notified directly when a new application comes in, for example. With the plugin you can additionally:

  • Send personalized notifications to you and your channels.
  • If you've connected a project to a Slack channel, a Jira bot will automatically preview tickets in Slack that you've been mentioned in.
  • / commands to manage and search Jira Issues in Slack.

Click here for the plugin:

Microsoft Teams for Jira

With the Microsoft Teams plugin, you can work on or manage your Jira tickets directly from the app, similar to the Slack integration:

  • Search for a project you would like to work on
  • Edit tickets directly in Slack

Click here for the plugin: 

Website integration and email notification

Jira can be easily integrated into your website via the so-called Issue Collector as already discussed above. This adds all new applications directly to a project in Jira Service Management. This way you always have all applications directly in one place and can manage and automate your human resource process with the previously created workflows. 

In addition, as explained above, an automatic notification will be sent to your email address for each application received. 

Another advantage of applications with the Issue Collector is that no accounts need to be created by applicants and only a few form questions need to be answered. In addition, interested parties can attach their CV, certificates or other proof directly to the application and upload them with the Issue Collector.

Integration of job portals and job exchanges

At XALT, we use a direct but innovative integration of various job portals in Jira Service Management. Among other things, we use the Jira REST API and translate job applications directly into a Jira ticket. 

With this, nothing stands in the way of posting jobs on the job platforms of your choice. 

HubSpot and other email automation tools

The flexibility of Jira (Service Management) also allows you to integrate other tools like Hubspot directly into your workflows. For example, with a simple email automation in Hubspot, you can forward applications directly to Jira and continue with your HR processes as usual. 


With Jira or Jira Service Management, you can easily digitize and automate your HR process without having to change systems. In addition, Jira offers a variety of integrations and plugins with which you can integrate your most frequently used communication tools. 

Application process with Jira

Fast and efficient application processes with Jira

"The biggest challenge I face right now is long lead times. Active candidates want a job NOW or as soon as possible. In my own company, the time to fill positions has increased from about a month to two months now. It is always difficult to retain the best candidates during this time period..."

- Glen Loveland, HR Manager, Global Talent Acquisition of CGTN

In many growing companies, a standardized and formal application process is needed. Among other things, to manage the effort of onboarding additional employees or hiring new ones. Part-time consultants, external recruiting firms or HR departments are often not an option for smaller companies due to the high costs involved. Therefore, it makes sense to get involved with HR management early on and build an internal application process, thus ensuring the next phase of the company's growth.

Each new application increases the administrative capacity. For small, growing companies, ways must therefore be found to manage this effort efficiently. One of the first tasks is to make the basic processes as efficient as possible. Choosing the wrong tools often requires a lot of manual effort. That's why the best approach would be to use software that automates much of the administrative work of the application process. In our opinion, one of the best tools to achieve this is Jira Service Management.

A quick note to all readers: If they've never heard of Jira Service Management, they should take a look at this Product Guide. It will give you a brief overview of the tool and how to use it: Jira Service Management & Ticketing.

How our solution works

Jira Service Management (JSM) is a versatile project management tool for departments such as finance, marketing, sales, and human resources. Among other things, HR managers can use Jira Service Management to recruit new employees, track applicant interviews, or manage applicant pools. Basically, JSM can be configured so that each new application automatically creates a ticket, which you can assign to individual employees or teams (e.g. HR). In doing so, your entire applicant management is greatly simplified with a visualized workflow. With this, you can also react quickly to comments on applications and adapt quickly to changes. For example, you can quickly ask applicants to submit work samples, references, etc. via the comment function. In Jira Service Management, you can: (1) Manage tasks and processes through workflows. (2) Show steps and status of a task in the workflow. (3) Customize the type and manner of the workflow. (4) Modify individual specific tasks or the entire flow of the workflow.

A standard Jira workflow might look like this:

Here is a brief overview of what is possible with Jira Service Management and the benefits of using Jira for recruiting. Furthermore, we explain how we plan and manage our HR processes with the powerful Atlassian tool.

1. tracking of applicants

An important application for Jira in recruiting is applicant tracking. Tasks for applicants, such as uploading all important documents, are created automatically with it.
Depending on how you design your application process, you can set your candidates' ticket status to 'done' when the process is complete. If they have other tasks to complete, such as background checks or administrative work, they can set the task to 'in progress'. In addition, special subtasks can be set up under 'in progress', such as 'call' or 'invite' if you want to get to know applicants better after the initial screening. Such tasks can be repeated each time a new candidate enters the application process.

2. manage relevant files

When recruiting for a job opening in your company, you often receive hundreds of applications with different attachments. With Jira, managing these documents is very convenient. All you have to do is select a specific ticket and click on the attachments icon. All relevant documents are added there automatically with an automated workflow.
Additionally, their team members responsible for recruiting can easily communicate the progress of an application in the comments section within a single ticket. Additionally, other team members can be mentioned in the internal comments, allowing for smooth and streamlined team communication.

3. creating an individualized Jira workflow

With Jira Service Management you can manage workflows, tasks and subtasks and complete them in parallel. Jira is a versatile tool that can be adapted to the requirements of your application process and your team. For example, the status workflow can be tailored to your process, even if it includes multiple intermediate steps (e.g. multiple interviews per applicant).
In addition, you can create a modifiable Kanban board to keep track of your recruiting stream and progress.

4. measure performance

Since Jira is a project management tool, you can accurately measure the performance of your workflows and your team members. For example, the average time from application to hire of your candidates. Thanks to the detailed reports, it's easy to identify potential bottlenecks and eliminate them before they become problems.
Formalizing and automating hiring workflows also leads to a more productive and satisfied workday for recruiters. With Jira, you ensure that your responsible team members can spend more time reviewing candidates, which also leads to better and more thoughtful candidate selection.

5. onboarding

Finally, you can also use Jira for the onboarding process of your new employees. We recommend that they customize and enhance their onboarding process in the Jira project with team-building events. You can easily record all important information, such as equipment provided or training results needed for onboarding.

How we implemented our Jira workflow

Over the past year, our teams have grown rapidly. The large number of new applications and onboardings has presented challenges for our HR specialists. As a result, we had to go through new applications every week, manually reviewing them and creating a series of identical topics and tasks. Ultimately, we decided to set up a new Jira workflow. In the workflow, several steps are automated, including the creation of various specific subtasks, descriptions and text templates.

First steps and basics

The first steps to setting up our workflow were: (1) Brainstorming about the various open positions in our company. (2) Planning out each step in our new Jira workflow. For the workflow, our IT and business development professionals pooled their knowledge. The result was: a workflow with individual processes in 5 superordinate steps as well as automated intermediate steps and required action fields. Here you can see a short excerpt from our workflow from the steps 1. application receipt and 2. application verification.

Despite the carefully thought-out steps, our workflow had some shortcomings at the beginning. After the first practical use, however, we were able to quickly identify these shortcomings and the workflow was adapted. This is another advantage of Jira: changing workflows and automations is quick and easy. Changes can be made at any time without having to adapt the entire project.

Creation of Jira workflow and Kanban board

Once you have defined your own workflow, it is time to integrate it into Jira. To do this, you first need to create a new project.

  1. Click on Projects > Show all projects
  2. Click in the upper right corner on Create project
  3. Select the basic project* > Enter the name and the key of the project

*We recommend using the base project. This offers the best possibilities to track, prioritize and resolve requests (or in other words: applications).

  1. Click on Boards > Show all boards
  2. Click on Create board in the upper right corner
  3. Select Kanban board > Board from an existing project select
  4. Enter the name and select the project you have just created for the board

After the board and project are created, click the Project Settings button. Here you can set automation, workflows, SLAs, and users and roles. We show an example of how we designed our workflow and Kanban board. We are happy to provide more information upon request. There is also detailed documentation on customizing workflows in Jira from Atlassian: Jira Workflow Overview

For the Kanban board in our Jira project we use 7 columns with a total of 22 Status. For a fast workflow it is important: (1) To choose a simplified workflow schema. (2) Create a cross link between the individual statuses. Thus, the status of each ticket in this workflow can be transferred to any other status. This creates flexibility, ease of use, and a simplified workflow for the Jira project. With the simplified workflow, the content of the Kanban board (including columns and statuses) can be changed at any time.

E-mail forwarding

After that, you have to define that all applications received as e-mail are automatically linked to the project. In other words, all email applications should automatically create a ticket in your configured project. To achieve this, you should integrate Jira with your email system. This setting can be configured under Project settings > E-mail request change. Make sure that you have the...

  • Have permission to manage projects.
  • enabled public logon or adding customers to your Service Desk project.
  • have set up appropriate request types as required visible fields.

Click hereto learn more about receiving requests by email. See the following guide for the Email Troubleshooting if you encounter any problems while setting up the e-mail channel.

After the setup, the incoming applications are now transferred and automatically stored in Jira Tickets converted. This allows your team to focus on applicants immediately without having to manually deal with multiple inboxes.

Automation with Jira

Automation is one of the biggest strengths of Jira Service Management. The simplest example is automation after receiving the application. When someone applies to your company, a ticket is created and the ticket is moved to the "New" column with the status "Open". The goal of this automated process is to thank applicants for applying to us and let them know that we have received their documents and will review them in a timely manner.

You can "If"-Trigger, "If"-conditions and "Then"-Add actions. These parameters determine the flow and generate the automation. The automation for receiving the application must be set as follows:

IF: Issue created OR status changed > IF: Issue matches status = Open > THEN: Send email = Template "Reply applicant(s)". AND Change Issue = Request/Application confirmed AND Add Comment = 'XALT Bot: Request/Application received and confirmed' AND Change Issue = Assignor changed to User XY AND Alert User = User XY.

You can also additional automations as SLA (Service Level Agreement). This rule alerts you or the assigned person when SLAs are at risk, so you can keep track of time-critical issues. For example, assigned users can be alerted after a certain time if a request or application has not been processed within a given time. We set the SLA in our workflow to 16h and automation:

IF: SLA remaining time = at risk (30 min remaining time) > IF: Problem applies = all problems > THEN: Alert user = user XY

Individual adaptation for your benefit

Of course, application processes vary from company to company. Therefore, you should complete the following tasks so that our workflow fits your individual process:

  • Customize the workflow to your application process. Pre-Screening, General, Shortlist
  • Create an issue for each role and use subtasks to track candidates
  • Customize the Kanban board to create the desired view of your HR stream
  • Implement and use text templates and your CRM system


The benefits of Jira Service Management are extensive. Because Jira is, in contrast to other tools from the recruitment sector, very inexpensive (from 10USD/month) and has significantly more functions. Furthermore, it is very easy to use (even for people who do not come from the IT industry). Furthermore, Jira allows automated workflows, which makes it possible to achieve enormous efficiency and speed.

Especially as a small and growing company, it is important to be able to react quickly to an application. Valuable applicants are otherwise invited to the next, larger company for an interview and are lost to you. A fast workflow is a first step to solve this problem.

This blog post is intended to provide some initial guidance. Of course, we welcome feedback and are happy to provide more detailed information on our workflows, templates and processes. Further information is also available on our solution page Jira Applicant Management Tool to find.