Operational Excellence

Work Smarter, Not Harder with Integrated PM Software

by Penny Kooy, June 17, 2016

Work_Smarter_Not_Harder_with_Integrated_Project_Management_Software.jpgWorking smarter is always better than working harder.

Whether it is meeting deadlines, earning profits or pleasing clients, attaining your goals becomes easier when you use integrated project management to gain efficiency.

With the proper agency management software, you can communicate more clearly, coordinate more closely and act more quickly. Here are some ways to make your agency more efficient.

1) Share information

Searching for documents takes time, which costs you money in terms of lost productivity. Providing common access to essentials like creative briefs and budgets lets your team spend more time working

You can also confine your efforts to a project’s scope by clearly delineating work that falls outside of it by referring to stored documentation. Capturing and prioritizing ideas worth pursuing becomes easier when team members and clients can save, access and discuss the same information.

2) Budget well

Leverage opportunity information by converting sales documents into project records. Importing contracts and contacts lets you quickly build budgets and route them to clients for approval. You can also create departmental budgets based on revenue forecasts, and revise spending on staffing and resources upwards or downwards for any increases or decreases in anticipated workloads.  

3) Automate processes

Accelerate projects by standardizing workflows around templates. Reduce administrative time by automatically updating timesheets when tasks are completed.

4) Coordinate work

With integrated project management, you can see who is working on what at any given moment. If one creative is overloaded but another is unexpectedly available, shift work from the former to the latter to keep projects on time. Establish project teams that are best suited for the work and keep them on track with regular status updates.

5) Involve clients

From formatting proposals to a client’s liking to routing creative work to them for approval, stakeholders are important and need to be kept in the loop. Be consistent and responsive in your communication with them, regardless of which department is dealing with them at any particular moment. Seek and share feedback across your team and your agency.

6) Communication Clearly

Project communications are so frequent and varied that it is easy for lines to get crossed and deadlines to be missed. Emails. Memos. Phone calls. Who said what? To whom? And when? Avoid confusion—and possibly delays—by storing it all for common use and reference.

7) Streamline billing

The timesheet is connected to the invoice, which is connected to the aging accounts receivable report, which is connected to the account executive. Well, you get the idea. Integrating data from throughout your project makes it easier for your accounting team to prepare and collect invoices.

Everyone in your agency probably works hard, and would likely work harder if needed. But use our suggestions to help them work smarter instead by using integrated project management to gain efficiency.

Has any of these tips helped you? If so, tell us how. Or, do you have other suggestions? Share them with us.

Subscribe to the Workamajig blog