Task structure (Work Breakdown Structure)

The task structure or hierarchy within a Box can be generated automatically by the App. You can set the rules, to structure your tasks, by activating respective structure builders.

The order of structure builders reflects the levels of the hierarchy or in other words the first structure builder determines the highest level within the structure.

Hierarchy in Jira

IMPORTANT: While the structure algorithm is very advanced, some hierarchies are impossible to generate automatically. This is due to the limitation of Jira and because the App cannot duplicate tasks in the hierarchy. Read more about Conflicting structure builders

Custom vs templates

Different tools offer different ways to automate task structuring. Out of the box, Jira provides Task<->Sub-tasks hierarchy or Epic link-based hierarchy, but you can build a much more advanced hierarchy using the App.

Types of structure builders

There are two types of structure builders:

  • built-in

  • link-based

When you activate one of the built-in structure builders, a task representing a Sprint, Component, Version, or Project will be automatically added in the task types box in the automated rules of the Scope definition page.

The link-based structure builders use a Jira link to define the parent/child relation. Soft links which are marked in the App (go to dependency configuration to check the link mapping) can be used as structure builders.


There are three templates available:

  • Agile

  • Agile (multiple projects)

  • Release



To activate Custom Configuration, change switchers in the Advanced Configuration panel.

On the right-hand side of Advanced settings, you can see the preview of the tree structure. The warning about the conflict appears when the structure cannot be generated according to the user's preference. For example, the hierarchy with Version and Jira Sprint structure builders cannot be shown, and as a result Version and Jira Sprint will be positioned at the same level.


  • only built-in structure builders are visualized on the structure preview

  • link-based structure builders cannot be visualized on the structure preview

Inverse links

Only link-based structure builders have an "inverse" option. When a link-based structure builder is active an additional checkbox appears on the right in the "inverse" column. When you put a checkmark in the box, links of a selected type will be used in inverse to build a structure.

When multiple link-based structure builders are active, you can select which link should be created (when you make changes in the task tree).


Task structure configuration example: 

When you reposition a task in a tree, a pop-up appears:

Synchronization of changes made in BP with Jira

When you manually reposition a task in the task structure, task fields are updated to match structure builders. The sync mechanism is responsible for mirroring the changes done by the user in the task structure in BigPicture in Jira issues. In other words, if the user indents, outdents or drags & drops tasks within the task structure, relevant changes in tasks' fields responsible for their position are done automatically in Jira. The fundamental prerequisite for the changes to be made is active Structure Builders.

NOTE: Link-based structure builders cannot overlap with built-in structure builders.


Advanced Roadmap (AR) in Jira Cloud Premium

Advanced Roadmaps is available as part of Jira Software Premium and Jira Software Enterprise.

What is the hierarchy in Advanced Roadmaps?

Advanced Roadmaps uses the same issue hierarchy as Jira Software but can be customized and expanded to track larger goals above the epic level. For example, you can create an initiative hierarchy level to represent a program containing multiple projects or combined efforts spanning multiple teams. When positioned above the epic level, the initiative can be used as a container for epics.

Hierarchy in AR allows you to create a WBS structure (similar to Task Structure in BigPicture). AR hierarchy can be activated in a Jira configuration via Manage Apps in a Hierarchy configuration option. Go to Jira Administration > Manage Apps > Advanced Roadmaps for Jira > Hierarchy configuration

Hierarchy is based on the levels (with the highest at the top), the levels above Epic can be configured, more to read is available here. Additional levels of hierarchy can be added above Epic. You can change the names of these levels and structure the hierarchy to meet your needs. Check out more about how to configure hierarchy levels or how to expose these levels in Jira.

You can also use your AR hierarchy by adding the AR as a structure builder in the App.

Jira Cloud (only)

Parent/Epic Link/Parent Link in BigPicture

In Jira Cloud, Atlassian introduced a unification of fields responsible for some parent-child relations (Epic link, sub-task, Jira (Advanced) Roadmaps). Parent Link is now handled by the same Parent field. 

It is a single way of representing parent/child relationships to give you a simple, consistent experience for all levels in your Jira Software projects. epic-link and parent-link in company-managed projects is replaced with the parent concept already used in team-managed projects.

Structure builders in BP (for Jira Cloud)
  1. With activated Parent structure builder, the App shows a hierarchy based on a Parent link (so also sub-tasks and Epic links). In this case, Epic and Sub-tasks builders are redundant.

  2. With activated Parent structure builder, the App does not allow to make indents which are incompatible with Jira hierarchy.

Jira Data Center / Server

In Jira Data Center / Server there is no change in parent/child relationship. There are Epic Link and Parent Link fields.

Structure builders in BP (for Jira Data Center / Server)
  1. With activated "Epic" structure builder, the App shows tasks linked to Epics based on Epic Link.

  2. With activated “Jira (Advanced) Roadmaps - Parent” structure builder, the App shows tasks linked to other tasks based on Parent Link.

  3. With activated "Epic" and "Jira (Advanced) Roadmaps - Parent" structure builders, the App shows tasks linked to Epic Link and Parent Link (recommended).

  4. With activated "Jira (Advanced) Roadmaps - Parent" structure builder, the App does not allow for making indents that are incompatible with the Jira hierarchy.

Trello Structure builders

When you connect external tools, you will see an additional section with Structure builders specific to that tool. In the case of Trello, these include Boards, Lists, Checklists, and Checklist Items:


  1. Let's generate a hierarchy resembling how data is presented on a Trello Board - tasks are organized into lists on the BigPicture Power-Up Public Roadmap:

  1. Enable the 'Boards' and 'ListClear' structure builders.

  1. As a result, tasks are organized in the same way as Trello board.

Resetting the structure (WBS)

Adjust the structure builders and click "Save". The task structure is rebuilt accordingly.

Manual indents

Manual indents are visible in the App only (not in Jira):

  • all manual changes on the tree structure by indent/outdent

  • any adjustments on the Basic tasks

Manual indents do not create any links in Jira or fields' changes (e.g. Version or Epic), as they are not connected to any structure builders. 

Clear manual indents

Clear the changes that were manually made to the task structure. 

The structure that was based on the structure builders is not affected.

Security and access

  • Only a user with a minimum Box admin security role can access and change the Box configuration.

  • To change the task structure configuration go to Box configuration > Tasks > Task structure