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[creative workflow management blog]

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Editor's Notes: This post was originally published in August 2011 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Here at Function Point, we are constantly working with creative firms, advertising agencies and digital agencies to better define internal processes and workflow management using our software. In doing this, we have come up with 6 personas that interact within the typical creative agency. Assisting these people work more efficiently and effectively together will help the agency become much more profitable.  

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Poor communication, sore backlogs, and increased stress-levels are all symptoms of workflow-enza. As prevailing as the common cold, workflow-enza is a pain in the butt that can render the productivity of a company bedridden. This happens because companies overlook their workflows. Consequently, they become overworked, inefficient, and make prospective clients think twice before shaking their hand. So, what’s the cure?

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Guest post by Michele Della Mattia, Executive Director of Operations, The NOW Group
"Summer student": in many agencies, this is a young person earning little to no pay fetching coffee, collating photocopies or doing digital drudge work until the wee hours. But this shortchanges both students and agencies. Students can offer a lot of value when you see their potential. One of the ways to unlock that value is through software training.
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After working with many in-house creative teams, I've found that they all have their own unique creative workflow processes! This can make it difficult to pinpoint the key elements you must have in a task management software. Today, we hope to shed light to some key areas that you may not have considered.

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When a prospect approaches your agency about a project, chances are you're not alone. They've approached others. We caught up with Sam Elgar, Growth & Engagement Manager at Invoke Media to find out about how you can best communicate your agency's unique process to ensure you stand out from the crowd.

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Clients can be great to work with. They challenge you creatively and inspire you to innovate. There can also be times when they ask you to take on an additional project with a tight timeline or change the scope past the cutoff date. When this happens, here are some strategies to say ‘no’. 

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A project management solution for your creative agency should be user-friendly, flexible, and dare I say — fun! The features of your agency project management software should encompass all of the facets that get you really excited about using it. 

 

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Atul Gawande’s book The Checklist Manifesto starts off with a graphic tale of what can go wrong in an emergency room when a crucial detail is missed. If you can handle a few gory details, this book will make you think differently about the importance of a checklist and the difference it can make in your creative agency

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Everyone believes that they have an effective and efficient way of working. Projects are always delivered on time and on budget. There is complete harmony and collaboration amongst the team. Meetings are short and concise. E-mails are minimal, and all data is neatly organized. Everyone is working on the same integrated system. 

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Managing a creative project from end-to-end can be a pretty daunting responsibility. Not keeping track of your jobs, resources and schedule, could potentially seriously undermine your operations and put place you in your client’s bad books. To keep your head above water, stay accountable and on track, here are a couple of useful tips to help point you in the right direction.

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