Atlassian Jira Confluence Instance Consolidation: Why It Matters for Mergers & Acquisitions

Pros and Cons of Consolidating Atlassian Jira Instances
Should you consolidate your Atlassian server instances or run multiple Jira or Confluence instances post a merger and acquisition? Our blog gives you the answers!

A merger and acquisition (M&A) is undoubtedly the largest corporate action that any company can undertake—one that can easily be a 3-trillion dollar activity!

Which is why those involved in an M&A (read CFOs, CTOs, Corporate Development and Procurement Heads, and the integration teams) should carefully plan every aspect of the merger & acquisition process that can affect its outcome.

This includes deciding whether to keep running multiple instances of their Atlassian server products to promote autonomy or to merge instances that help cut down a significant overhead.

In this blog, we attempt to make this decision easier for you by diving into the advantages of both approaches and help you evaluate which makes more sense from a cost perspective.

What is meant by multiple Atlassian instances?

So, to start with the basics, what is an Atlassian instance?

An Atlassian instance is a self-contained copy of a specific product from the Atlassian suite (such as Jira Software, Jira Service Management, Confluence, BitBucket, Bamboo, and Trello).

If a company has a single instance of an Atlassian product, everyone works together in the same place. However, if the company has multiple instances of a product, people may have access to one or more copies of the product. This is common in the case of bigger organisations, those with many legal entities, or in companies that have just completed a merger or an acquisition. There might be multiple instances for different purposes or departments.

For instance, let’s take the example of a hypothetical company, XYZ Corp. The marketing team manager at XYZ decides to use Jira Software for managing their marketing projects.

However, XYZ already has a Jira instance used by the engineering and product development teams. Instead of integrating the marketing projects into the existing company-wide Jira instance, the marketing manager ends up configuring a separate Jira instance exclusively for their marketing activities.

As a result, XYZ Corp. ends up with multiple Jira instances—i.e. one for the marketing team and another one for the engineering and product development teams. This situation can lead to several issues:

  • Redundancy: The same product is being used in multiple instances when it could have been centralised.
  • Expensive subscriptions: Different instances might be on different billing cycles, such as one on a monthly plan and another one on an annual plan. This fragmentation could prevent the company from leveraging bulk discounts or from adopting more cost-effective subscription models.
  • Data silos: Information and projects are isolated within each instance, making it harder to get a unified view of all projects across the organisation.
  • Lesser savings: Maintaining multiple instances can result in higher overall costs due to duplicate subscriptions and missed opportunities for consolidation savings.

Therefore, while there are many benefits of managing multiple instances in any organisation, a company that has recently merged or acquired another entity needs to consider how this organisational change could impact their existing setup.

What is meant by consolidating multiple Atlassian instances?

When we talk about consolidating multiple Atlassian instances, we’re referring to the process of merging or combining separate instances of Atlassian products into a single, unified setup. This means that post an instance consolidation, your products, users, and bills are all managed from the same place.

Your trusted Atlassian solution partner can help you consolidate your instances by transferring all product instances from one organisation to another. After the transfer, the unwanted organisation is deleted.

An instance consolidation offers the most consistent setup and can simplify instance management, optimise resources, and foster a more streamlined Atlassian environment.

Let’s look at the benefits of running multiple instances autonomously versus reconciling your instance environment.

What are the benefits of running multiple Atlassian Jira or Confluence instances?

1. Autonomy and federation

Many companies chose to keep their Atlassian instances federated—meaning, keeping them autonomous, yet connected and interoperable. This offers several benefits, such as:

  • Having a dedicated instance to host external content
  • Maintaining a Jira instance that targets only a minority of users
  • Running a separate Jira server to improve a specific team’s productivity
  • Having a unique instance running for classified projects
  • To reduce the duration of an upgrade downtime

2. Security and compliance

One reason you may want to run multiple instances is due to compliance. If your business operates out of multiple locations, your instances may need to adhere to different local regulations, which can be challenging if you only have one instance.

Moreover, legal concerns, such as data privacy laws, jurisdiction over servers, or government surveillance might lead to the decision to have dedicated servers in separate jurisdictions for specific Jira projects.

3. Data control

By maintaining multiple instances, different departments or acquired entities can maintain their own workflows and data without interference. They can customise each instance to meet specific needs without impacting the broader organisation.

Isolated systems can also reduce the risk of data loss since issues in one instance are less likely to affect the others. Separate Jira instances allow you to control:

  • Who can access and administer the product
  • The level of audit logging
  • The geographic location of your data
  • Specific product-level settings and preferences

Moreover, Atlassian product instances acquired as a result of a merger or an acquisition can benefit from minimised disruption in a multiple-instance environment, while allowing people the flexibility to keep working in their existing instances.

What are the benefits of consolidating Atlassian Jira or Confluence instances?

1. Reduced costs

The single most important benefit of consolidating multiple Atlassian instances into one is that organisations can significantly reduce licensing and operational costs. An instance reconciliation helps you streamline licensing fees, optimise server maintenance, and contain administrative overheads. Moreover, instead of adding physical infrastructure for each instance, an instance consolidation allows you to deploy Atlassian Data Centre products in a clustered architecture, helping you save more.

2. Simplified instance maintenance

A consolidated instance is far easier to manage centrally than having multiple instances that may not present you with unified updates. Reconciled instances offer a standardised approach to data backup and security, and help in managing user access and permissions centrally. This reduces the administrative burden on your IT team as well.

3. Data integration

Consolidating your Atlassian instances can help you map data efficiently and establish clear connections between data points across different instances. It equips you to ensure seamless user access across relevant instances by creating integrated, automated workflows that bridge the gap between different instances.

4. Optimised instance environment

Managing multiple instances can be complex. By consolidating your Jira or Confluence instances, you reduce the time spent on upgrading and maintaining each one. This allows you to focus on optimising your primary instance, thus enabling you to enhance performance and automate processes.

5. Enhanced collaboration

An instance consolidation fosters better collaboration across departments since data and workflows are unified. This leads to improved project visibility and an integrated workspace, thus driving productivity. Consolidating Jira instances also helps streamline user management and makes it easier to leverage tools like Crowd Data Centre for user management needs.

6. Improved scalability

A unified instance can accommodate future growth and expansion more effectively, thus facilitating company mergers and acquisition plans.

Will your M&A gain a strategic advantage with Atlassian instance consolidation?

Having multiple instances post a merger or acquisition is inevitable—however, consolidating all your instances onto a single Data Centre deployment can help streamline the management and operation of your Atlassian applications.

Maintaining multiple instances can often translate to more time and resources spent on updates, backups, and troubleshooting, and can lead to increased licensing and infrastructure costs. Merging them into a single instance, however, can help you:

  • Reduce the workload of your IT team that need to focus on core technical tasks post a merger
  • Standardise and optimise IT process workflows
  • Enable efficient user management and visibility into different instances
  • Audit existing instances to eliminate redundant licenses

For an organisation that has effected a merger or an acquisition, there are two factors that influence whether you can merge your Atlassian instances:

Consolidation vs. Multiple Instances: How Corptec Technology Partners can help you decide

If you’re still unsure which is the best approach for your unique business requirement, let Corptec make things easy for you!

As a Gold Solution partner since 2018, Corptec Technology Partners has helped organisations across Australia and the United States navigate their Atlassian journey in a scalable and flexible way. Our solution consultants come with extensive knowledge and experience dealing with Atlassian product suites, and can help you analyse if merging multiple Atlassian instances would be in your best interests.

Our team can offer you a free assessment of your current instances. This includes a detailed instance-by-instance audit of your organisation’s usage of Atlassian licenses, based on your projects and configurations. It helps you review your license usage by documenting the exact number of product licenses being used and analysing if there are redundant licenses being paid for. Doing this assessment can help you achieve significant savings for your team.

Post the free audit, we offer you guidance on optimising your instance landscape—starting from cleaning up your projects, custom fields, spaces, or branches that aren’t actively being used to helping you reconcile your instances and migrate seamlessly to a Data Centre. However, we understand that for various reasons, your company might prefer a hybrid approach. If this is the case, we help you find the middle ground—i.e. consolidating the majority of your instances while maintaining separate instances for critical or confidential projects.

Recently, we helped a leading learning solutions provider consolidate 6 global instances successfully. We also helped consolidate 7 separate cloud sites into a single organisation for a major payment solutions organisation in Australia.

Being Atlassian’s select partner gives us access to exclusive benefits (including discounts, free trials, and more) that you can avail when you partner with us.

In other words, we can help you:

  • Zero in on the right strategy for your M&A
  • Enable you to correctly assess your instances
  • Support you in doing a site clean-up
  • Enable you to bring down unnecessary costs and instance overhead
  • Execute an instance consolidation with minimum hiccups

Moreover, if you need help with stakeholder buy-in before making a decision, you can count on Corptec’s team to guide you at every step. Feel free to give us a call or book a meeting with our expert. We will be there to assist you—whatever your choice!

Free Atlassian Jira Confluence Instance Audit by Corptec Technology Partners

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