Reporting on Reporting: MARS™ & Custom Charts for Jira

June 8, 2022


One of our unique offerings at Blended Perspectives is our Marketplace Analytic Research Service™ (MARS™) database of Atlassian Marketplace 3rd party apps.

At Blended Perspectives we pride ourselves on being a Solution Partner who does not make our own applications. Because of this customers and the Atlassian community as a whole can rely on us for objective, unbiased assessments of the Atlassian Marketplace. MARS™ is a key part of this. As a quantitative database covering every facet of the Atlassian Marketplace, MARS™ lets us combine our qualitative assessments of apps with the latest up to date information on a range of data driven metrics.

MARS™ contains a vast array of data from instances, reviews, and pricing, to platform, app growth, and version releases. This is all tied together at the top level through our meaningful app categorization in which, for every app over 500 instances, we carefully assigned our own categories based on the primary functionality of each app. We do this instead of using Marketplace app categorizations which are somewhat meaningless due to vendor self-selection. This means that MARS™ can give us a completely unique perspective into which apps are really excelling and driving forwards in the Marketplace.

MARS™ & Jira

A unique aspect of MARS™ that is perhaps not too well known is the fact that it is managed completely within Jira.

To those unfamiliar with Jira’s remarkable extensibility and ability to be easily customized to specific requirements this may come as a surprise. However, using a combination of workflows, custom fields, bulk updates, and a host of other Jira features, MARS™ is able to smoothly function despite containing millions of individual data points.

In terms of operating as a database, Jira works spectacularly well: apps (which are issues in our MARS™ project) are built up of custom fields representing all data points collected from the Atlassian Marketplace. Apps (issues) can be easily searched, filtered, updated, linked, aggregated, and managed in Jira all while leveraging a tool that we already use extensively for other purposes. In this regard Jira is a superb tool that with a little customization can meet the needs of almost any team.

A further benefit of MARS™ being operated in Jira is that we can use the native reporting functionality of Jira to build out charts and reports from our data. However, Jira’s ability to provide user friendly, customizable, beautiful charts/reports is somewhat lacking. Thankfully the Atlassian Marketplace exists.

The Marketplace is an incredible hub of innovation and through MARS™ we love reporting on the great work being done within it. The Marketplace is home to over 4,000 apps working to solve big problems across a range of categories, including Planning, Scripting, Test Management, Time Management, and of course Reporting.

One reporting tool, and a favorite of ours at Blended Perspectives, that helps Jira users create great charts and reports in Jira is Custom Charts for Jira Reports by Old Street Solutions.

Custom Charts for Jira Reports

Custom Charts for Jira Reports by Old Street Solutions was launched in mid-2019 and for good reason has gone on to be one of the most popular charting/reporting apps on the Atlassian Marketplace.

Custom Charts expertly treads the tightrope of being incredibly user friendly while maintaining an impressive amount of feature depth in terms of chart types, dynamic filtering, use of custom fields, and chart customization (color, order, renaming, etc…).

eazyBI has dominated the reporting space for a while now with its incredible feature depth making it a must have tool for anyone looking to perform complex reporting in Jira. However, with eazyBI’s awesome level of in depth customization comes some issues around usability, which is where newer apps like Reports – Charts and Graphs for Jira, Dashboard Hub for Jira, and of course Custom Charts for Jira Reports have come into their own. Old Street Solutions have found a valuable niche for themselves in creating an easy to pick up yet powerful reporting/charting tool. Although more and more vendors are moving into this specific space, we believe that Custom Charts for Jira Reports is the most comprehensive solution available today.

To demonstrate both the power of managing your work in Jira and the beautiful charts of of Custom Charts for Jira Reports, we’ll assess how it has been performing recently using its own charts.

MARS™ Reporting: Category Report

Using our MARS™ categorizations (which you can read more about here), Custom Charts for Jira Reports is categorized as a Reporting app.

The Reporting category is the 6th largest Atlassian Marketplace Category when looking across all products (Figure 1) and the 3rd largest when looking just at Jira apps (Figure 2).

Top Atlassian MARS categories by paid instances

Figure 1: Top MARS™ Categories by Paid Instances

Top MARS™ Atlassian Marketplace Categories by Paid Instances (Jira Only)

Figure 2: Top MARS™ Categories by Paid Instances (Jira Only)

Custom Charts for Jira Reports is the 2nd largest Jira Reporting app, behind only eazyBI.

Top Atlassian Jira Reporting AppsFigure 3: Top Jira Reporting Apps

And as we can see from Figure 4, the market for Jira Reporting apps is by some distance the largest segment of the Reporting space.

Atlassian Marketplace Reporting Category Product Breakdown (Paid Apps Only)

Figure 4: Reporting Category Product Breakdown (Paid Apps Only)

Meanwhile, in the Confluence Reporting space the largest app by some distance is Table Filter & Charts for Confluence. However, impressively, Custom Charts for Confluence is the 5th largest app in this space, significantly higher than eazyBI’s Confluence application.

Atlassian Marketplace Top Confluence Reporting Apps (Paid)

Figure 5: Top Confluence Reporting Apps (Paid)

The size of Custom Charts for Jira Reports in the Reporting category is particularly remarkable when we consider how relatively new Custom Charts is to the app game when compared to eazyBI. As Figure 6 shows, Custom Charts really took off in early 2020 and has not looked back since with continuously excellent growth. While eazyBI experienced a bump beginning in May 2021 this was largely due to them combining the Cloud and DC/Server products onto a single application. Furthermore, when comparing Custom Charts to similar apps like Reports – Charts and Graphs for Jira and Dashboard Hub for Jira we can see that on top of being far larger it has also experienced much greater growth over the past few years.

Atlassian Marketplace Custom Charts vs Competitors

Figure 6: Custom Charts vs Competitors

Overall, in a fast moving category filled with other great apps, Custom Charts for Jira Reports by Old Street Solutions really stands out. Its range of attractive charts with incredible usability makes it a great option for anyone looking to build charts in Jira.

Running our MARS™ reports in Jira has saved us significant time and energy analyzing the data with the same reports auto-updating as new data comes in. Keep an eye out for Custom Charts in our future MARS™ reports!