Issue Tracking Tools Review 2019

Issue Tracking Tools Review 2019

We conducted a survey of 2400 participants to identify the most beloved Issue Tracking tools and to learn why organizations choose them. How likely are users to recommend particular tools? Which features are the most important? If these questions intrigue you, check out our report — because now we know the answers.

Key Takeaways

In this survey we studied 12 of the most popular Issue Tracking tools that offer various solutions. Of the tools we considered, Asana, Monday.com, Trello, and Wrike only offer cloud versions of their products, while Bugzilla provides only a standalone version. Both cloud and standalone solutions are available for Azure DevOps Server (formerly Team Foundation Server), GitHub Issues, GitLab Issues, Jira, Pivotal (now VMware Tanzu), Redmine, and YouTrack.

Most known

Most recommended

Highest satisfaction

Best features

Best qualities

Preferred by non-IT companies

Cloud vs standalone

On-premises and cloud solutions are used almost equally: 51% of respondents use cloud tools while 49% use standalone solutions.

Company policy is the main reason people give for staying with standalone solutions, while cloud solutions are chosen for easier maintenance and administration.

Customer Satisfaction

Roughly 7 out of every 10 respondents have experience using Issue Trackers in their work processes. YouTrack is the most likely to be recommended, according to their answers. GitHub Issues, Asana, and GitLab Issues also have high recommendation rates.

Do you have any experience using Issue Tracking tools?

Familiarity with Issue Tracker

Here and in the following sections, only the answers of respondents who have experience with Issue Tracking tools are used.

Satisfaction with Issue Tracker

Here and in the following sections, Pivotal, Monday.com and Wrike are excluded due to their small numbers of observations.

GitHub and YouTrack have the fewest extremely dissatisfied users.

How many users are likely to recommend the Issue Tracking tool?

Here and in the following sections, Bugzilla is excluded due to its small number of observations.

Most recommended tool

66%

of YouTrack users are likely to recommend this tool.

How many trackers are used in your company?

Tools developed in house

3%

of respondents said their company developed their own Issue Tracker.

Why do you use multiple Issue Trackers?

> 100%

Slightly more than a half of the companies surveyed use only one tracker, while the others combine several solutions. Most of them use different tools for different teams.

Reasons for Choice

About 37% of respondents were involved in choosing their Issue Tracking tools. The primary reasons they offered for choosing the tools they did were their own experience, industry standards, feature sets, pricing, and the availability of free versions.

Were you involved in the selection of your Issue Tracking tool?

Asana

> 100%

Azure DevOps Server

> 100%

GitHub Issues

> 100%

GitLab Issues

> 100%

Jira

> 100%

Redmine

> 100%

Trello

> 100%

YouTrack

> 100%

Usage by Companies and Teams

All of the tools we asked about are used primarily in IT companies, but for some of the tools, up to 30% of users surveyed work in non-IT sectors. Some tools are mostly used in enterprise companies, while others are more popular among startups and small businesses. Team size also matters. For some trackers, more than two-thirds of users work in teams of 7 people or fewer.

Are Tracking tools IT-specific?

> 100%

Among our respondents, 73% of Issue Tracker users work in IT-companies. However, these tools may be useful in any industry. Redmine, GitHub Issues, and GitLab Issues are the most IT-specific and are used mostly in IT companies, while more than 30% of YouTrack and Trello’s users are at non-IT companies.

Size of the teams that use each tool

Asana and Trello have more of an audience among independent workers than all other trackers. Jira and Azure DevOps Server are more frequently used by big teams. The users of GitHub and YouTrack were spread among small and large teams proportionally to the market average.

Size of the companies that use each tool

Jira and Azure DevOps Server have more of an audience in enterprise businesses than other trackers do. Small companies and startups are the primary audience for Trello and Asana. YouTrack and Github are chosen by companies of various sizes — from less than 10 employees to more than 5000, which is closer to the real distribution of company size on the markets.

Features

This section presents a comparison of the features and qualities of the Issue Trackers. An interesting result is that, for some features, respondents were not particularly impressed with the offerings of any Issue Trackers. While most tools got high ratings for reporting an issue, it seems only a few offer a good solution for time tracking and keyboard-centric navigation.

Features comparison

Best trackers by feature

Tools are ordered by rating

Reporting issues

  • GitHub Issues
  • YouTrack
  • GitLab Issues

Working with issues

  • YouTrack
  • Asana

Integrations

  • GitHub Issues
  • GitLab Issues

According to the responses, YouTrack provides the best search capabilities, while Trello’s Agile Boards are ranked the highest.

Qualities comparison

Best trackers by quality

Tools are ordered by rating

Usability

  • Trello
  • Asana
  • GitHub Issues
  • GitLab Issues

Performance

  • GitHub Issues
  • Asana
  • GitLab Issues
  • Trello

Сloud service

  • Azure DevOps Server
  • Asana
  • GitHub Issues
  • Trello

Value for money

  • GitHub Issues
  • Asana
  • GitLab Issues
  • YouTrack
  • Trello

Configuration

  • Asana
  • GitHub Issues
  • YouTrack

Onboarding

  • Asana
  • Trello
  • GitHub Issues

YouTrack’s feature set was ranked the highest, while GitHub Issues and GitLab Issues topped the documentation category.

Which integrations are important for users?

> 100%

More than a half of the users surveyed prefer to have their tool integrated with version control, CI/CD, documentation tools, and messengers.

What helpdesks do users integrate with their Issue Trackers?

> 100%

Less than a third of respondents use helpdesk integration with their Issue Trackers. Among those that do, Jira Service Desk is the most preferred solution.

Server vs Cloud

For the most part, on-premises and cloud solutions are spread equally. Cloud versions are chosen for easier maintenance and administration, while company policy is the main reason to stay with a standalone solution.

Cloud or standalone versions of Issue Trackers

If both cloud and standalone versions are available, most participants prefer a standalone option. The few exceptions are Azure DevOps Server (37.5%) and GitHub Issues (17.3%).

Why do you prefer the standalone version?

Why do you prefer the cloud version?

Respondents’ Demographics

We polled people from 20 countries, from Argentina to Vietnam. We got most of the responses (about 70%) from Germany, Japan, China, United Kingdom, United States, France, Australia, Russia, Canada and Spain, with the responses spread evenly among these countries.

Job role

More than a half of respondents are developers and software architects, and 1 in 14 occupies a C-level role, which seems like a lot.

Age range

Employment status

Nearly 9 out of 10 respondents are employed by an organization.

IT is the company’s primary business

Nearly 3 out of 4 respondents work for an IT company.

Industry

> 100%

Company size

Team size

Thank you for your time!

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If you have any questions about this survey or suggestions for future ones, please contact us at surveys@jetbrains.com.