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5 min read

monday.com vs Jira: five things to know when comparing the two

Monday vs Jira

Welcome to another edition of our monday.com blog series, your number one source for all the latest monday.com news and insights.

In this article, we’ll take a deep dive comparison into monday.com and Jira, the strengths and use cases for each, and what you need to consider when deciding which is the best fit for your business needs.

Jira and monday.com

Jira and monday.com are two of the most popular work management tools in the marketplace today. 

While each is a power application, they’re not carbon copies of each other - there are factors that can tilt the scales one way or the other, depending on your specific circumstances. For those on the hunt for a way to manage your team’s work and who aren’t sure which option would be a better fit, we’ve outlined five of the most important factors to consider.

1. Understand your use case(s)

While there is a good deal of overlap in functionality between the two applications, it's undeniable that each has its own unique strengths.

Broadly speaking, Jira is a tool that offers features that cater well to software development teams, DevOps methodologies, and teams working with CI/CD pipelines.

monday.com is at its best when it enables business teams to manage their work. Marketing, project management, and finance teams will all find a lot to love about monday.com.

Which is not to say that Jira can’t work for business teams or that monday.com can’t work for software development teams. Both tools are quite flexible and can be configured to accommodate a wide range of use cases. However as a starting point, it’s best to understand which tool is stronger for which use case out-of-the-box.

Jira vs monday.com use cases graphic

2. Know who needs the power

Both Jira and monday.com offer a great deal of flexibility when it comes to designing workflows. However, they differ greatly when it comes to who is allowed to take advantage of that flexibility.

monday.com lets any and all users create new workspaces and boards, enabling them to get started quickly and take responsibility for their own processes.

Both approaches have their advantages and disadvantages. Allowing anyone to jump into the fray at any time truly empowers end users, however, it also means that it’s going to be harder to unify teams who might be working in silos. For that reason, it’s very important to establish best practices with users and teams upfront.

On the flip side, the fact that Jira requires administrator permissions in order to create projects and workflows means that there’s a larger barrier of entry to get started - but that also ensures tighter control over the system, allowing for better enforcement of best practices.

monday.com and Jira comparison power graphic

3. Standardised vs flexible workflows

Which tool is right for you depends on what level of flexibility you’d like to implement in your processes and workflows. Below, I’ll outline how Jira and monday.com take different approaches to process guidance and workflow freedom.

In Jira, your issues follow along pre-defined workflows, much like a flowchart. There are also options in place to add validators or conditions to your workflow that prevent actions from being taken unless certain requirements have been met. These features are great for instilling a level of control in your workflow - it’s easy to keep teams on track with tight guardrails. The downside of this philosophy is that it can be a blocker if your teams need the flexibility to work outside of the pre-planned flow.

On the other hand, monday.com’s design principles are largely based on freedom, flexibility, and openness.

Users are empowered to create their own columns, update their own statuses, and define their own flows. There aren’t many options in place for inhibiting the flow of an item from one status to another, for example.

This is great news for teams still defining how they work or regularly iterating on processes. But if you need to implement a highly-regulated workflow or set up a process that requires very tight controls over how tasks move from step-to-step, monday.com may offer more freedom than you're comfortable with. 

monday.com vs Jira standardised vs flexible workflows

4. Consider security and availability

monday.com and Jira's platform options differ, so when comparing the two, you should be aware of those platforms' impacts on the application's security and availability.

Jira is available in two different hosting options - a self-hosted Data Center instance or Atlassian's Cloud. (Technically, there’s also Jira Server, but a sunset date has been announced for that product, so I wouldn't recommend adopting it if you're not already using it).

The DC and cloud offerings are quite different from each other, as Atlassian has made it clear that Cloud is the future of Jira. The cloud instance of Jira is continually updated with new features and boasts compliance with SOC 2/SOC 3 and GDPR, among others.

monday.com similarly is a cloud-based application, with a slew of security certifications, including SOC 1/SOC 2/SOC 3, GDPR, and HIPAA. Definitely check out their full list here.

With both Jira Cloud and monday.com, you're partly paying for peace of mind and the convenience of not having to stand up and maintain servers and applications yourself.

However, at the same time, you're not in full control of your instance. Changes can (and will) happen automatically. Each also offer a 99.9% uptime guarantee.

That said, don't sleep on Jira Data Center if security is at the top of your list. If you're comfortable with the trade-off, the comfort of knowing that you fully control the security and availability of your instance may be worth the added responsibility of maintaining everything yourself.

monday.com vs Jira security graphic

5. They both work better together

By now, it should be clear that both Jira and monday.com have areas in which they excel.

Both have use cases that make them powerful applications for managing your team's work and reporting.

According to our latest Digital Etiquette Report, 40% of respondents think their organisation has too many tools for work, highlighting the need for better integration to help boost productivity and efficiency. This is possible with monday.com and Jira.

In many cases, the ideal scenario would be to have both applications working in tandem, allowing each to play to its own strengths. Jira is a more powerful and robust tool for software development teams and monday.com is a flexible and customisable work operating system for just about any business team or use case.

With an easily-configurable integration between the two, it's simple to set it up so that creating new Jira issues also creates new monday.com items (and vice-versa), along with mapping fields and data points so that the two applications always stay in sync.

Especially for teams who may already be using both monday.com and Jira, setting up an integration like this is a fantastic way to allow teams to continue working the way they currently do, while improving visibility for projects that cross departments. Less disruption and more collaboration is a win/win!

monday.com and Jira sych graphic

What should you do next?

Equipped with these tips you can start identifying the different factors that are important to your team and how they might shift your decision-making to one side or the other. 

Or perhaps, as mentioned in our final tip, both tools have a place in your ecosystem, driven by each one’s specific strengths.

If you’re still not sure which way to go, there’s no substitute for the real thing. You can easily sign up for a free trial of each and take them for a spin.

monday.com free trial

Jira free trial

And if you need a bit of expert guidance, contact us here and one of our Adaptavist certified experts would be happy to help you make the right choice.

You can also visit our monday.com hub page for all the latest news, resources and tools to help you supercharge your monday.com workflows.

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