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Connecting Atlassian and Microsoft Teams: The Ultimate Guide for Improved Collaboration and Efficiency

May 14, 2024

It’s a challenge for businesses to stay aligned when teams are using several apps to communicate and track progress. Certain teams may prefer using Microsoft Teams while others more frequently update their work in Jira or Confluence. This often leads to miscommunications and blockers, ultimately delaying projects and negatively impacting the business’ reputation and bottom line. 

Integrating Microsoft Teams and Atlassian products (Jira, Confluence, Bitbucket, and Bamboo) can overcome this difficulty and keep everyone involved in a project moving in the right direction. Learn how Microsoft-Atlassian integrations can benefit your business and choose one that best meets your needs. 

Part 1: Connecting People and Processes With Microsoft-Atlassian Integrations

Over one million businesses are using Microsoft Teams as their default business messaging platform. Atlassian products like Jira and Confluence are also widely used and relied upon by 83% of Fortune 500 companies for project and information management. Organizations using both Microsoft Teams and Atlassian products work more efficiently by integrating them. There are several ways to integrate, including native integrations, building your own integrations, or purchasing apps from the Atlassian Marketplace.

Why Your Business Needs Microsoft-Atlassian Integrations

For any type of business with teams working in different platforms, integration is key. Strategic and customer-facing teams may communicate primarily in Teams whereas technical teams would focus on Jira issues or documenting data in Confluence. They may update in the Atlassian platforms, but not communicate via Teams as frequently. 

A host of problems arises without proper integration leading to stalled development, dissatisfied customers, conflicts and silos between team members, and lost information among others.

We’ll explore the types of integrations available, all of which have their benefits and downsides depending on your business capabilities and requirements.

Native Integrations

Atlassian and Microsoft have partnered to offer free native integrations including Jira Cloud for Microsoft Teams, Jira Server for Microsoft Teams, and Confluence Cloud for Microsoft Teams. These allow you to manage Jira issues and Confluence pages from Teams and receive notifications in Teams. 

While these integrations provide a great start for better communication between Teams and Jira or Teams and Confluence, businesses with complex needs often require more advanced tools. The native integration features lack customization, and there are limitations to sending information and taking actions bi-directionally.

Develop Your Own Integrations

Businesses that subscribe to Zapier or have experience developing integrations via APIs may build their own customized integrations between Microsoft Teams and Atlassian products like Jira or Confluence.  Some may also choose to use Excel to send data by exporting reports from Jira and Confluence and importing into Teams.

Zapier is fast and relatively easy for businesses that have the budget for it, but it may not be able to meet complex needs. Creating your own in-house integrations requires development resources not every business has the bandwidth for. And while anyone can use Excel, it requires manual effort, and real-time collaboration is not possible.

Integrations on the Atlassian Marketplace

For businesses seeking easily available, more advanced integration, there are several apps available on the Atlassian Marketplace. Choosing an app allows greater flexibility for better communication and collaboration, especially for large teams with complex projects. It’s far easier to install an app than to develop your own integration and apps provide more options than native integrations to suit your business requirements.

Move Work Forward, a Platinum Atlassian Marketplace Partner, offers the following integrations to connect Teams to Atlassian products. If you’re using several Atlassian products, these apps may be the ideal choice for your business. They offer bi-directional or uni-directional integration, notifications to Microsoft Teams Channels and personal chats, and advanced notification filters and customization options.

Other Marketplace apps you may consider include:

Part 2: Increasing Productivity and Streamlining Communication With Atlassian-Microsoft Teams Integrations

Using Atlassian-Microsoft Teams integrations removes communication blockers, provides greater visibility and allows teams to focus on meeting their goals whether that’s providing customer service, working with agency clients, or developing software.

Gain Full Visibility Into Project Progress

By integrating Microsoft Teams with Jira, project managers can ensure that projects are on track every sprint and nothing gets overlooked. Get notifications in Teams about anything important that happens in Jira, for instance, if an issue has been moved or if its status has changed.

If there are any changes to the project scope, project managers may want to create issues in Jira from Teams and assign them to someone who has the capacity for the task. Discussion over new tasks often takes place in Teams, so this is the best time to check availability. Assigning it immediately ensures it won’t be forgotten.

Reporting on projects is also made easier with integration. A project manager who needs to make regular reports on multiple projects can configure updates by getting Jira data sent to Teams at periodic intervals. She can then compile all the updates into reports. Another valuable source for reporting data is Confluence. If that’s connected to Teams, any notifications about new reports created can be sent from Confluence to Teams.

Provide Prompt Customer Support

When support tickets come in, you want to make sure they’re properly prioritized and resolved in a timely manner to keep customers satisfied. If you’re using Jira Service Management, support tickets may come in on Jira, but can get overlooked by support agents who are working in Teams. 

With an integration, whenever a ticket is created, a notification can be sent to the correct channel in Teams so customer service representatives or developers see it immediately. Those working directly in Jira Service Management may escalate an issue by sending it directly to the responsible person on Teams. 

Once the responsible person has solved the issue, they can change the issue’s Jira status from Teams so the customer service representative knows it has been resolved and can check whether the customer is happy with the solution or requires further assistance.

Boost Productivity by Automating Your Workflows

Automation boosts efficiency and reduces the possibility of human error. Going back and forth between Microsoft Teams and Jira or Confluence takes time and breaks concentration. When updates need to be made on both sides, the likelihood of something being overlooked is high.

We’ve covered some of the automation features above including automatic notifications for specific activities. When implementing an integration, consider your entire workflow from beginning to end. What tasks are taking up time and don’t require human decision-makers? This will help you decide what to automate.

A developer changes an issue status to “Done” in Jira. There’s no need to think about who needs to be informed and manually update them, as they’ll promptly receive the notification. Is marketing waiting for an image from the design? As soon as it’s uploaded to Jira or Confluence, a pre-configured notification can go straight to the marketing team’s channel on Teams. A monthly report is added to Confluence. Stakeholders can receive the update immediately. 

Workflow automation also streamlines DevOps teams’ releases and testing. While Jira and Confluence are the most popular Atlassian products to integrate with Microsoft Teams, integrating tools for DevOps like Bitbucket and Bamboo keep projects running smoothly, tracking development pipelines, sending notifications about build failures and informing stakeholders when a build is due to be released. 

Improve Collaboration

Being able to discuss Jira issues and instantly view them in Teams breaks down silos and enhances collaboration. If you’re having a meeting, you can create issues during the meeting so everyone is aware of them and can suggest changes as necessary. Any team members who were not involved in the meeting would get notifications in Jira about the new issues.

Another way to boost visibility for collaboration is by creating tabs in project channels for Jira issues or to match specific Jira filters. That way, everyone involved in the project can easily view the relevant issues. Confluence can also be connected to the channel so users can view all documents related to the project directly from Teams.

When you need a single source of truth for collaboration, it’s often best to rely on Confluence, but team members may not be aware of when documents are changed or updated. With a Microsoft Teams-Confluence integration, you can get notifications in Teams whenever an update is made. This also allows for greater collaboration on the documents as Team members can quickly provide feedback or ask for clarification. 

Part 3: Features to Look for in an Atlassian-Microsoft Teams Integration

If you’ve decided you need an Atlassian-Microsoft Teams Integration, you’ll need to consider your business requirements to choose one that best suits your needs. For complex businesses, native integration is often not enough. Here are some features that you should look for and ones that Move Work Forward’s apps offer:

Choose between Uni-Directional and Bi-directional Integration

For the greatest flexibility, choose an app that allows both uni-directional and bi-directional integration. With bi-directional integration, information can be sent from Teams to Jira or Confluence and vice versa and you can perform actions to both sides from either platform.

For example, teams that work primarily in Jira would want to be able to send notifications to Teams about issue status. Those who spend more time in Teams would want to create issues or change issue status directly from Teams. 

Bi-directional integration with Confluence is great for collaboration because team members can edit information in Confluence while they’re discussing it. However, there are some cases where businesses prefer uni-directional integration.

Uni-directional integration is more secure, and it also limits who can edit or share information to prevent accidental deletions or confidentiality breaches. A person not directly involved with the project who simply needs a report would not require edit access. 

With an app that has the option for both, you have greater access control to protect certain data while allowing full collaboration capabilities to those who need it.

Automatic Notifications and Updates to Improve Workflow

Choose an integration that allows you to set up automation to manage your projects more effectively. Automatic notifications and updates keep teams aligned and cut down on manual work. If you’re using both Jira and Confluence, integrate both to streamline the flow of information to Teams.

It’s ideal to be able to automate on different levels from immediate issue status updates for those involved in execution to weekly or monthly updates for stakeholders needing higher-level reports. 

Here’s an example of regular updates administrators can get in Teams using Advanced Microsoft Teams Jira Connector.

Automatically get important updates on Microsoft Teams.

Some apps focus more on Jira Service Management and automatic ticket updates whereas others apply to a wider range of businesses. For the most versatile experience, choose an app provider that caters to all Jira users so you can automate your entire project workflow.

While only applicable to DevOps teams, automation for development workflows from Bitbucket to Microsoft Teams or from Bamboo to Microsoft Teams is another consideration. 

Customization of Features

For larger businesses or those in niche industries, the out-of-the-box features with an app or plugin may not be suitable. For example, if some team members don’t have direct access to Jira, there may be no need for them to have access to certain features.

Setting notifications for specific actions or to specific individuals is another option many businesses appreciate. You don’t want everyone in the company to be notified about something that is not relevant to them.

With customization, instead of receiving notifications for all project updates, team members only get updates for issues directly relevant to them. Advanced Microsoft Teams Connector for Jira and Advanced Microsoft Teams Connector for Confluence enables you to configure a range of filters.

Set filters so everyone only gets the notifications that matter to them.

This reduces information overload so team members can manage the task at hand without being overwhelmed by irrelevant notifications.

Start Improving Your Communication and Collaboration 

If you use Microsoft Teams and Atlassian products, bringing them together will vastly enhance your communication and collaboration. Manage Jira issues and projects, share Confluence documents and reports seamlessly, and improve workflows for Bamboo and Bitbucket. 

If you’re collaborating on large, complex projects for any type of business, the free Microsoft Teams-Atlassian integrations may be insufficient for your needs, and building your own integration is a costly endeavor. An app from the Atlassian Marketplace is affordable and takes little time to implement. Move Work Forward offers a free trial of all our Microsoft Teams integration apps so you can see how they fit into your team’s projects and workflows.

Try Advanced Microsoft Teams Jira Connector

Try Advanced Microsoft Teams Confluence Connector 

Try Microsoft Teams Bamboo Connector 

Try Advanced Microsoft Teams Bitbucket Connector

About Move Work Forward 

Founded in 2016, Move Work Forward is a Platinum Atlassian Marketplace Partner that specializes in Atlassian and Microsoft integrations. Over the years, the company has leveraged its experience and unique insights into customer challenges to build a portfolio of Marketplace apps that are counted on by global leaders in the Fortune 500, along with 5,000+ other companies, to connect their teams, unify their systems, and drive their business forward.

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