Traceability Matrix


The Traceability Matrix displays a two-dimensional matrix showing the links between two sets of requirements or other types of items. For example, you could have high-level customer features displayed as rows and their related lower-level functional requirements as columns. Links can be created and deleted on the fly. The Traceability Matrix helps you to visualize complex relationships within a set of requirements and to quickly repair incorrect links.

To navigate to the Traceability Matrix, open an R4J project and select the Traceability Matrix at the sidebar.

It is important to understand that the effective use of the Traceability Matrix depends on the practices of your organization and its development process. You need to take into account how different types of requirements or other types of issues are structured, as well as how they are linked together and used. An organization might have different practices for different situations, so different matrices can be defined and saved in the Traceability View.

The sheer number of requirements in a project may also be a challenge to understanding traceability, so identifying significant subsets of the requirements and saving them in different views also promotes an effective solution.

Traceability Matrix Layout

A panel on the left of the coverage view provides a list of saved views and context menu operations to manage the two different types of views.

  • Private Views will only be accessible to the person who created it.

  • Public Views are accessible to everyone who has access to the Jira project.

The requirements are arranged in a two-dimensional matrix. Arrows appear in the intersections of the rows and columns where the corresponding requirements are linked. For example, if customer features form the rows of the matrix and functional requirements form the columns, then the arrows show which functional requirements are linked to their customer features. The arrows show the direction of the link. A link shown as A → B indicates that A has what Jira calls an “outbound” link to B, while B has an “inbound” link to A. Red triangles to the right of the arrows indicate suspect links. Hovering over an arrow reveals the type of the link.

Context Menu Operations



View Container

Saved View

Configure view

Configure a new traceability matrix view.

New traceability matrix views are saved as a private view by default.

Sort by name

Sort the saved views under the container by name ascending or descending.


Delete the saved view.

Drag and Drop Operations

The saved traceability matrix views support the following drag and drop operations:

  • Change the position of the saved view

  • Move private views to public views

  • Move owned public views to private views

Traceability Matrix Operations





Select items for new view

If you do not select a saved view, you first select Configure View and then fill in the required information in the dialog to specify the requirements that appear in the rows and columns.

The requirements are selected in one of three ways:

  • Specify the Issue Types to be used. For Source, select the option "Issues Types".

  • For Source, select the option "Filter" and provide the name of a saved Jira query.

  • For Source, select the option "JQL" and provide a query in the Jira Query Language.

In the section Link Definition, specify the link types that are to be used. The Scope option determines if unlinked requirements are to be excluded from the matrix.

Link an existing issue

Hover on an empty cell and select the + icon to open the Link Existing Issues dialog, where you choose the link type and then proceed to create the new issue.

Delete link

Hover on an arrow and select it to open the Unlink Issue dialog, where you can unlink the issues.

Display link type

Hover on an arrow to display the link type.

Refresh display

Select Refresh to display the latest state of the requirements and their links.

Clear configuration

Select Clear to return to an empty view.

Known issues