If you’re already on top of the game, check out blog section for other useful posts.
You are working with a handful of customers and your projects keep piling up. You know that keeping control of all your customers’ feedback and requirements is imperative if you want to build their trust. You have a great sense of achievement but you sometimes feel like you are losing ground. This is mainly because there is a lot of stuff going on, and you’re having trouble handling them.
Even the most experienced business owners have one problem in common - how to document and manage hundreds of customers’ project requirements.
Having a neatly organized and detailed record of customer data is a sure-fire way to turn transactions into ongoing relationships.
In this article, we will be focusing on the most efficient ways to organise this important data, without much hassle - all the customer’s project requirements, specifications, briefs, feedback, and all the essential project information. We will show you exactly how to organise your customer’s data with optimum precision and, most importantly, how to avoid the unneeded frustration if you don’t do it properly.
Organise your emails
Most customer communication starts with emails. Your customer’s initial requirements usually come in the form of a document. You need to make sure that all the valuable information doesn’t slip through the cracks.
Create individual customer folders either in your email client or in your main customer folder contact sheet to be able to find it easily. Another way to easily track your customers and their data is to use customer tracking spreadsheets.
Create a project outline
To improve your project workflow and coordinate your project seamlessly you need to create a project outline. The best way to do it is to collaborate with your customer at the onset of the project. This allows you to set clear goals, and objectives and ultimately involve both parties in creating the final product.
This should help you have a clear overview of your customer’s initial expectations and navigate your workflow more easily.
Involve your customers from an early start
As the project progresses, there may be a lot of twists and turns that can significantly change the project development, including planned timeframe and the budget. This scenario most frequently happens when customers start changing their requirements and asking for changes that will change the course of the action.
To avoid the confusion that the overload of customers feedback can cause, invite them into the project and make them become one of the players.
Always try and find a place where you can easily collaborate and discuss everything important. The best thing about a single place for discussion is that it keeps all the data in one place. Everyone is able to see all the changes, updates and ongoing requirements made both by the customer and the team.
ActiveCollab makes the entire process of controlling your customer’s data and managing all the moving pieces much better.
When you receive your initial requirements in a file, you simply attach it to the project section.
However, if you receive it in the form of the plain text, just enter the Project and copy the text in the Notes section.
The easiest way to involve your customers into your projects is to let them give their feedback directly on tasks.
The customer’s feedback instantly involves other members of the team, which usually leads to the lively discussion and results in a reasonable solution of the problem. Once the discussion reaches its peak, it’s time for the project manager to transfer it to the discussion section and make it more visible and easy to keep track of.
There you have it. Good organisational skills and a solid project management tool will set the stage for good customer communication and help you bridge any gaps in collaboration on projects to come.