Managing blocked stories

When work on a story can’t proceed due to unexpected circumstances, you can add a blocker to it. For example, you may need another feature story, a chore to add infrastructure or a bug fix to be completed before the story can be started, finished, or tested. Perhaps you need help from a designer or a decision from the product owner. Blockers make these dependencies visible.

Blocked stories

To add a blocker, expand a story, or open it in full page view. You can click to add a blocker in the Blockers section. Type in an explanation of what is blocking the story, which may include a link to another Tracker story, and click Add. You’ll see a visual indicator that the story is blocked.

All project members can add, update and delete blockers. There are several ways a blocker can be resolved. If the blocker is another story, it will automatically be resolved when that story is accepted or deleted. You can mark the blocker resolved manually by clicking on the blocker icon or the resolve button. This turns the blocker icon gray.

Expanded story showing 'blocker' section with a link to another story blocking it

Stories with unresolved blockers show a red blocker icon in the story card. Stories that are blocking another story show a blue blocking icon in the story card. If a story has unresolved blockers and is also blocking one or more stories, it will have an icon with red and blue arrows indicating both blocked and blocking.

Story card showing a 'blocked' icon, a blocker icon, and a blocked-blocking icon.

Click on the Blockers link in the sidebar to reveal a panel showing all blocked stories in your project.

Project view showing'blockers' panel and sidebar link

Blocking stories

When you add a blocker that contains a link to another Tracker story, that other story will be updated with a “blocking” indicator in the Blockers section, containing a link to the story that it is blocking. This indicator remains until the story is accepted or the blocker is otherwise resolved.

Expanded story showing'blockering' information

If a blocked story has one remaining blocker that contains a link to a blocking story, accepting the blocking story will automatically resolve the blocker.

Notifications

If a story you follow is blocked, or is blocking another story, you will receive in-app and/or email notifications per your profile settings. You can @mention other project members in blockers so that they get special notifications to get their attention.

Searching for blocked or blocking stories

In addition to using the Blockers panel in your project, you can use search keywords for blocked stories in combination with (or not) other search parameters. “is:blocked” filters for blocked stories. “is:blocking” filters for stories that are blocking other stories.

Previous
Organizing releases
Next
Handling dependencies