How To Keep Track of Tasks & Keep Clients Happy
- Service Provider Pro (SPP) allows agencies to set up tasks on a per-service basis, with task titles, descriptions, deadlines, and assigned team members, making it easier to automate project delivery.
- Slack’s reminders feature is useful for setting up private to-do lists and recurring reminders, and it can be used for individual tasks or by project managers to create reminders for the entire team.
- Using post-it notes can help individuals focus on one task at a time, but it may not be suitable for those with a high volume of tasks, while calendars provide an overview of upcoming tasks but can be disrupted by schedule changes.
Those working in an agency have a list of tasks they have to go through on a daily basis. Knowing how to keep track of tasks and ensuring that they are done before the due date is an art in itself. Luckily, there are different methods that make it easier.
As an agency member, you’re most likely using a tool to track tasks and deliver services. It could be SPP’s built-in task feature that is attached to a service, a different software, or why not, a spreadsheet. Which one is the most efficient way, and how many methods are there when it comes to task management?
Let’s look at different ways to manage tasks and how they affect your productivity.
While not a dedicated to-do list app, Service Provider Pro allows you to set up tasks on a per-service basis. This makes it very easy for agencies who have different tasks for each service to ensure that they are done on time, and by the right person.
Each task you set up can have:
a task title to describe what has to be done,
a description that you can format with HTML,
a deadline, and
one or more assigned team members.
The powerful thing about SPP.co is that the tasks can be used for automation. You can either use webhooks or the native Zapier integration and check each new order for tasks.
If they are assigned to person A, you could send a notification to a device, or post in a Slack channel. But the easiest method to handle these tasks are through the client portal that team members log in. They’ll see their assigned orders and tasks, fulfil them, and mark the task as done.
Who it’s good for: Agencies and their contractors who need to be looped into project management. Instead of manually adding tasks, they are predefined on a service level, making it easier to automate the project delivery.
Slack’s reminders feature brings a mix into the traditional to-do list style world as they remind me of the good-old IRC days. Set up a reminder by typing
/remind, then the name of the person or channel, followed by the task to do, and when to fire the reminder. Here’s an example:
/remind @deian complete task in order #ABC345 on June 14th at 3pm
The powerful thing about these reminders is that you can even set them up for your colleagues, so a project manager could create them for everyone in the team. You can even set reminders to be recurring, for instance by using “every Monday.” If you want to take a glimpse at everything you’ve set up, just use the command
/remind list to see the full list.
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Slack has also made it easier to use the reminders feature by moving it into the Later tab. You can see archived, completed, and in progress reminders here, and even create new ones without using the slash command.
Who it’s good for: Anyone who needs to set up private to-dos and doesn’t collaborate too much with colleagues. It works well for small tasks that don’t require too much time.
Yes, who still writes with pen and paper, you might think. The cool thing about the post-it notes is that they can help you focus on one task at a time. Decide which one you’ll tackle, write it down, and snap the note onto your laptop, wall or white board. It couldn’t be easier, right?
The biggest advantage is that this method allows you to really focus. Is your mind wandering and you’re thinking about checking LinkedIn quickly? Not so fast, look at the post-it note and focus on what’s important. With that said, this might not work for everyone. People who need to complete ten tasks a day won’t be able to organize their day efficiently.
Who it’s good for: People who need to focus on one task at a time and get easily distracted.
Daniel Markovitz writes in this article that to-do lists don’t work. He arguments that there are multiple issues with it, from having to make a choice which task to do first to issues with time management. These days, you even have to collaborate with other people on some tasks, making the entire thing very complex.
The alternative? The calendar. Set up time slots for each task so you get a better overview of your upcoming days. The tricky thing is that while the calendar method gives you control over your tasks—after all you have to allot time for each one—you also need to know how much time is actually needed for individual tasks.
One disadvantage is that schedule changes can mess up the way you’ve organized your tasks. If someone asks you to re-schedule a call, you have to move things around in your calendar. Also, there’s just something great about checking off a task. It gives you a sense of accomplishment.
Who it’s good for: If you need to keep track of your tasks and have a fixed schedule, this one is for you. Calendars give you a great overview of upcoming to-dos, but not completed tasks.
There’s no best way to keep track of tasks
There are cases where none of the above methods work that well, or something is just missing. To keep track of your daily tasks, you can also just mix it up, and use different methods. For instance, if you’re working in an agency, you’ll be assigned to tasks in the SPP portal. Since one task can have multiple sub-tasks you need to do, write the one you’ll tackle on a post-it note. This will help you focus and ensure that your productivity is high.
Experiment with different methods and see which ones work best for you. After all, you don’t have to settle on just one method.