How can I control the editing of issue fields via workflow?

Usage FAQ

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Please note that the following instructions do not provide a complete solution to Field Level Permissions, but allow to control who can edit particular fields. This is achieved with the help of Transition Conditions in a Workflow.

These instructions do not provide a solution for restricting who can see the values of fields. Users who have permissions to view an issue, will be able to see the values of these fields for that issue, search by them, receive notifications when these fields change, etc.

Before you read these instructions, it is important to have a good grasp of how Workflows fit into JIRA. A good source of information on Workflows can be found in JIRA's documentation: Configuring Workflow

You should also familiarise yourself with how Screens work in JIRA: Configuring Fields and Screens


Please note that the ability to edit some System Fields is already protected by a permission:

System Field


Fix Version

Resolve Issue


Assign Issue

Due Date

Schedule Issue


Modify Reporter

Security Level

Set Issue Security

The easiest thing to do for the above fields is to use Permission Schemes to control who can manipulate them. For more information on permissions please see: Managing Project Permissions

However, if the field you are trying to protect is not already protected by a permission, e.g. a custom field, you can use a workflow transition. This transition will allow certain users to only edit certain items of an issue without transitioning to another step of the workflow.

Please follow these instructions:

  1. Create two Screens.
  2. Using Screen Schemes make sure one of the Screens is mapped to the View Issue and Edit Issue operation. This screen should contain all fields, including the protected fields. Otherwise, no one will be able to see values of fields on the View Issue page.
  3. Create another Screen and map it to the Create Issue operation in the Screen Scheme. This screen should not contain the protected fields.
  4. Create a workflow transition that goes to the same step as it's original step. Ensure the transition uses the same screen as the Create Issue operation.
  5. Create a new group or project role for users who should not be able to edit protected fields.
  6. Protect the transition using the "User Is In Group" or "User Is In Project Role" conditions.
  7. Place users who should not be able to manipulate protected fields into the new group or project role.
  8. Edit the Permission Scheme of the project in question and ensure these users do not have the Edit Issue permission. Grant other permission that you deem needed to this group or project role.
  9. Ensure that a transition such as this exists for all statuses (steps) in the workflow where the protected fields need to be manipulated. All of these transitions can use the same Screen.
  10. Users who are members of the group or project role will be able to execute the transition to edit fields. Other users, who should be able to edit protected fields should use the normal Edit Issue operation.

Please note that the above setup will not allow the protected fields to be populated when issues are created or edited.

Last modified on Jan 5, 2010

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