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What is the difference between the different project types in Jira?



One common question that often comes up is what the difference is between especially business projects and Software projects. In Jira Software this is not very clear and as a result I see almost all projects are created as Software projects. Lets go through the differences to see what a project type is and how it can be used in your project.

In Jira there are three different project types that you can have:

  1. Business project - Jira Core.
  2. Software Project - Jira Software
  3. Jira Service Desk Project - Jira Service Desk

The different project types comes with some specific features. This means that based on the project types you will see a different set of functionality in your project. These are referred to as Application Specific Features. In essence the choice between the different project types define a template that decides what the project you create will have in terms of functionality. If you accidentally choose the wrong type, then you can always change that later and the new choice will again create the functionalities related to the template.


Business Project

If you choose Business Project, then you will get the default functions that are included in Jira Core. This project type is best suited for projects that work a lot with tasks.

Software Project

If you choose Software Project, then you will get the default functions that are included in Jira Core plus the functionalities to work with Agile Boards, Integration with development tools and release hubs for software version release. This is the recommended project type if you work in an Agile way and need the scrum board, or if you work with development so you need the release information or integrate with development tools.

Jira Service Desk Project

This add the service desk functionality such as SLA's and the Que view. It also add some specific Service Desk gadgets. This project type is useful for projects where SLA's are very important and in projects where you need a specific flow for support. Unlike the Business Project and the Software project this project type can feel very different as the view is arranged in a different way to better fit the need of a service desk staff.


A Summary of the Project Types

Application Project type Application-specific feature set
JIRA Core Business_Icon_18px.png Business projects
  • Available to all licensed users of JIRA
JIRA Software Software_Icon_18px.png Software projects
  • Integration with development tools
  • Agile boards
  • Release hub for software version release
JIRA Service Desk ServiceDesk_Icon_18px.png Service Desk projects
  • Service Level Agreements (SLAs)
  • A customizable web portal for customers
  • Permission schemes allowing customer access


Project Types are NOT the same as Project Templates

It is very important to understand that Project types are not the same as project templates. Project types define the underlying functionality of the project while templates change the layout and interaction with the project. We will cover the template types in a different blog post if you think that could be interesting.


If you want to read more about project types, feel free to read the Atlassian documentation here.



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