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The best Jira alternatives in 2024

By Toby Peterson · October 27, 2023
Hero image with the logos of the best Jira alternatives

Jira users are a diverse bunch. Some use Jira Software Cloud for Agile project management and software development projects. You might find them tracking bugs, doing spring planning, or managing a backlog. Then there's Team Service Management, the folks who use the platform for IT purposes—things like coordinating incident responses and managing changes for internal and external clients.

For all its uses, though, Jira isn't the only platform in town. Depending on the use case (and budget), there are a number of Jira alternatives for you to consider. 

Zapier has done extensive head-to-head comparisons of Jira and other related apps to help you make the best choice to fit your specific needs. Here's how they stack up.

The best Jira alternatives

  • ServiceNow for ITSM

  • Asana for project management

  • Trello for small teams who love Kanban

  • Zendesk for customer support

  • Other Jira alternatives

What is Jira?

Jira is made up of two distinct products:

  • Jira Software Cloud is a project management platform geared toward development teams, and its strength is in Agile and Scrum project management. Product management and development teams use it for issue and bug tracking and other product development tasks. It comes with reporting features like burndown charts, velocity charts, and control charts, and you can automate your development workflows for better efficiency.

  • Jira Service Management (JSM) is an IT service management (ITSM) tool. IT teams use it to log, track, and resolve IT incidents or handle service requests. JSM allows you to create and maintain a service catalog and/or a knowledge base with articles, FAQs, and other documentation for your end users, and you can generate custom reports, or use a central dashboard to monitor your team's performance and customer satisfaction. And just like with Jira Software Cloud, there's automation to make this work run even more easily. 

The best Jira alternatives at a glance

Best for

Pricing

More or less expensive than Jira?

ServiceNow

IT Service Management (ITSM)

Custom

More

Asana

Project management

Free plan available; paid plans from $10.99/user/month (billed annually)

More

Trello

Small teams using Kanban

Free plan available; paid plans from $5/user/month

Less

Zendesk

Customer support

From $55/agent/month (billed annually)

More


A Jira alternative for ITSM 

ServiceNow

Screenshot of ServiceNow's open ticket dashboard.

If you're considering Jira for your IT service management needs, it's worth considering the scale and scope of your enterprise first. 

For small- to medium-sized businesses, Jira can be a sensible choice. Its base platform supports basic ticketing with a relatively low barrier to entry, both in terms of start-up costs and training. And for more complex needs, Jira's segmented product suite allows for scaling with additional tools and features for collaboration, roadmapping, customer service, and more. If you're looking to get your ITSM off the ground simply and quickly, Jira is a sound decision.

But if you're looking for a more robust platform that connects your entire organization, you might consider ServiceNow. Widely seen as the gold standard for ITSM, ServiceNow will likely take longer and cost more to roll out, but the end result is functionality that many find worth that time and money.

In addition to the available features and utilities, ServiceNow also provides users with App Engine Studio, a low- to no-code collaboration and app-building platform that provides you with a level of customization that, unless you have coding experience, Jira simply can't. ServiceNow also gives you access to generative AI technology (which is coming, but not yet available in Jira) to streamline your workflows. For an all-inclusive tool that's rich in functionality, ServiceNow is more than a viable alternative to Jira for your ITSM needs.

You can do even more with ServiceNow by connecting it to Zapier, so you can make it work with the rest of your tech stack. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Add ServiceNow records from new Salesforce objects

Add ServiceNow records from new Salesforce objects
  • Salesforce logo
  • ServiceNow logo
Salesforce + ServiceNow

Post Slack channel messages for new high-priority ServiceNow incidents

Post Slack channel messages for new high-priority ServiceNow incidents
  • ServiceNow logo
  • Filter by Zapier logo
  • Slack logo
ServiceNow + Filter by Zapier + Slack

Add new records in ServiceNow with new issues in GitHub

Add new records in ServiceNow with new issues in GitHub
  • GitHub logo
  • ServiceNow logo
GitHub + ServiceNow

ServiceNow pricing: Custom (definitely more expensive than Jira)

Read more: Jira vs. ServiceNow

A Jira alternative for project management

Asana

Screenshot of Asana's home dashboard, showing Bryce's tasks, projects, frequent collaborators, and goals in white boxes on a forest green background

If you're hunting for a project management tool geared at developers, Jira is definitely a go-to. But if you're ok using something less purpose-built, Asana provides a solid alternative. 

Asana is a less industry-specific platform, capable of supporting everything from marketing and design to product management and event planning. It's a standard project management app, with loads of different views, and overall, it has a friendlier interface than Jira. 

Asana requires minimal training to get started, and features sharper, more robust project boards. It also has better reporting capabilities, with separate dashboards for general reporting and tasks, giving you easier access to the data that's most useful for you. And the reports themselves, whether pre-built or custom, are easy to use and dynamically designed. 

Connect Asana to Zapier, so you can get Asana talking to all the other apps you use. Learn more about how to automate Asana, or check out these templates for inspiration.

Create Google Calendar events from new Asana tasks

Create Google Calendar events from new Asana tasks
  • Asana logo
  • Google Calendar logo
Asana + Google Calendar

Create Asana tasks from new Google Forms responses

Create Asana tasks from new Google Forms responses
  • Google Forms logo
  • Asana logo
Google Forms + Asana

Create Asana tasks from new Calendly events

Create Asana tasks from new Calendly events
  • Calendly logo
  • Asana logo
Calendly + Asana

Asana pricing: Free plan available; paid plans from $10.99/user/month (billed annually); more expensive than Jira

Read more: Jira vs. Asana

A Jira alternative for small teams who love Kanban

Trello

Trello, our pick for the best project management software for Kanban and beyond

Kanban boards are a popular staple in project management, and they can help small teams streamline their workflows and boost efficiency. Jira effectively supports this approach, particularly for teams using Agile methodologies. 

But Trello is the gold standard when it comes to Kanban, and it offers a more flexible approach, which can be useful if you're not married to Agile workflows. Trello's Kanban boards are easy to set up and use, even by non-technical members, with intuitive drag-and-drop functionality. If Kanban isn't your jam, though, there are better Jira alternatives out there for you.

The reporting functionality in Trello is less robust than what you'll find in Jira, but if you're looking for a more flexible, method-agnostic project planning platform that's simple to use, Trello is a solid choice.

If you pick Trello, you can do even more with it by connecting it to Zapier. Learn more about how to automate Trello, or get started with one of these templates.

Create new Trello cards from new Google Calendar events

Create new Trello cards from new Google Calendar events
  • Google Calendar logo
  • Trello logo
Google Calendar + Trello

Create Trello cards weekly at scheduled times

Create Trello cards weekly at scheduled times
  • Schedule by Zapier logo
  • Trello logo
Schedule by Zapier + Trello

Create Trello cards from new Google Forms responses

Create Trello cards from new Google Forms responses
  • Google Forms logo
  • Trello logo
Google Forms + Trello

Trello pricing: Free plan available; paid plans from $5/user/month (billed annually)

Read more: Jira vs. Trello

A Jira alternative for customer support

Zendesk

Screenshot of an open ticket in Zendesk.

Customer support is something you can't afford to get wrong, which is why the choice in customer support platforms can feel like a huge decision.

Jira's ITSM features make it best suited for IT support teams. You'll get access to automation and customizable collaboration features, allowing you to create workflows and track issues. Jira also offers advanced reporting, though some third-party extensions might be necessary if you're looking for in-depth customer support analytics.

Zendesk, on the other hand, is a better solution for external customer support teams, particularly those looking for a more user-friendly ticketing solution. It brings together support requests from email, chat, social media, and more in a single dashboard. Zendesk also features a robust knowledge base, which makes Zendesk easier to use for help desk beginners and can also provide users with self-service support to reduce your workload. And like Jira, Zendesk provides extensive reporting and analytics tools to track key metrics and provide insights into agent performance.

You can connect Zendesk to all the other apps you use with Zapier's Zendesk integrations. Read more about how to automate Zendesk, or try one of these pre-made workflows.

Create Zendesk tickets from new Typeform entries

Create Zendesk tickets from new Typeform entries
  • Typeform logo
  • Zendesk logo
Typeform + Zendesk

Create Zendesk tickets from new Google Forms responses

Create Zendesk tickets from new Google Forms responses
  • Google Forms logo
  • Zendesk logo
Google Forms + Zendesk

Add new Zendesk tickets to Google Sheets

Add new Zendesk tickets to Google Sheets
  • Zendesk logo
  • Google Sheets logo
Zendesk + Google Sheets

Zendesk pricing: From $55/agent/month (billed annually); more expensive than Jira

Read more: Jira vs. Zendesk

Other Jira alternatives

Of course, these are only a few of the options you have if you're looking to switch from Jira. Here are some other tools you might check out.

  • If it's a dev-specific project management tool you're after, be sure to check out platforms like Pivotal Tracker, Shortcut, Linear, Backlog, and Zoho Sprints.

  • If you're not a developer, you might be better off with a different project management tool. Asana and Trello are great examples, or you can take a look at these project management apps for small businesses and enterprise project management software.

  • If budget is an issue, take a look at these free project management platforms

Which Jira alternative should you use?

First, make sure you do need a Jira alternative. Jira is a pretty robust platform, and it's purpose-built for specific teams, so start by poking around all its features. But if you know Jira isn't for you, figure out what you're using it for—ITSM, project management, Kanban, or customer support—and then use the list above to pick the right app for your use case.

Related reading:

  • AI in engineering: Transforming the way software engineers work

  • 7 key stages of product development life cycle

  • How to drive customer value with collaborative product development

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