I see quite a lot of questions about using project management software. For example:


MS Project how to compare "% Complete" with "Planned % Complete"

JIRA Statuses and Assigned users

Showing Microsoft Project files to people without Project

Do we think these are OK or should they be closed as off topic? On one hand, they're not about project management and usage of software feels a bit off topic. On the other hand they are related to project management and will generally have a correct answer, rather than just being opinion polls.

Interested to hear what other members think.

1 Answer 1


We've always accepted questions about how to use software that's involved in daily project management activities. The types of questions we tend to avoid are those asking for software recommendations. The latter questions tend to lead to spam and very low quality answers that don't provide any context as to why the user recommends the software.

Most Stack Exchange communities say no to recommendation questions, but Software Recommendations Beta SE recently started public beta. Such questions are so tough for the Stack Exchange format that the community outlined some pretty clearly defined rules as to what constitutes a good question and what constitutes a good answer, but by focusing only on recommendations, there's a good chance they can make it work.

As to the four examples you mentioned, I know Microsoft Project is used by a lot of project managers, and many of the questions involve formulas that relate specifically to metrics people ask about in other questions. However, JIRA is bug tracking software. Project managers typically don't track bugs or create tasks, so I'd lean towards closing those as off-topic.

I'll add that if you see ways to edit such questions to make them fit better, editing is strongly encouraged. Editing questions and answers to make them shine makes it more likely that visitors to our site will see it as a professional resource of knowledge. That, in turn, leads to growth.

  • 2
    Jira Agile is a project management tool and is widely used for Scrum and Kanban processes. Apr 1, 2014 at 20:46
  • I second @AshokRamachandran: I use MS Project to have a broader view of the project to report to senior management whereas Jira is used to have a more narrow / task-focused view of the project... I must admit that in my paycheck my role is not 'Project Management', so we could derivate from this that, if one 'manager' is using Jira, it could imply that one is not a project manager :D
    – Tiago Cardoso Mod
    Apr 21, 2014 at 14:54
  • @TiagoCardoso - I don't have strong opinions on Jira either way. As long as the questions themselves are valuable from a PM perspective and the questions are about project management, IMHO they have a home here.
    – jmort253
    Apr 22, 2014 at 2:28

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