Communication in the Hybrid Workplace
The workplace has changed in the last few years. Sure, many businesses, especially agencies, had employees who worked remotely or maintained a hybrid schedule. But now it’s normal not only to have a team that’s either remote, hybrid or some mix of the two, but to have employees insist on remote or hybrid work. Hybrid and remote work is now institutional, not just something to be dealt with every now and then, but a reality of the American working life that agencies need to be equipped to deal with. And with workers being pickier about their workplace than ever, it means that an agency that has the flexibility to offer flexibility will be more attractive to top candidates.
It’s likely that you’ve already had to adjust your practices over the course of the last couple of years, allowing for work-from-home as it became the standard. But did your agency, creative team or media firm use the best practices to ensure maximum efficiencies?
The first area of remote work that has to be addressed is communication. Plainly put, there is no team if you can’t communicate with your team. Many companies resolved this by utilizing video conferencing apps, chat channels and normal email practices. These are great tools to use to keep your team connected and on the same page, but they often come up a little short when put in the context of running an ad agency, marketing team or media buying outfit.
By using disparate software to run your project communications, you’re putting yourself and your team into a logistical labyrinth. Maybe your client wanted to make some changes to a project. If your team is remote, you can email or message a change order to all the relevant parties, but that’s one email or chat of hundreds those individuals will receive. It might get lost in an overcrowded inbox, or it might get delayed due to a team member being in a different time zone. A centralized agency management system will help you avoid the messiness of trying to operate communication and project management across systems.
With an agency management software like Advantage, you can keep every scrap of relevant information attached to a specific project. Our job jacket is the central hub that collects information in real time. Any new assignments you send out to your team or individual members will attach to the job jacket, and alert everyone who needs to know about the update. Any comments team members make are time stamped, sent to everyone attached to the thread and stored with the assignment, creating a log of communication for every update to any project.
With Advantage, project schedules are centralized, meaning everyone on the team is on the same page at all times. Since you may have a team that’s spread across the globe, having a central location to access the project schedule is vital, and updates and alerts to that schedule get sent to everyone attached to the project in real time.
Another key factor in the life of any agency, media buying firm or marketing team is the billing approval and AP approval process. With a team that might be in the office some days and working remotely others, the approval process can slow to a crawl. Advantage offers truly paperless billing approval and AP approval that sends out notifications in real time when items need updating or have been signed and approved.
Plus, all forms, documents and project details also live in this centralized hub. That means, if your client does ask for a campaign change, you can submit your change order through Advantage rather than trying to connect with the right person through email or chat. In fact, Advantage lets you standardize any forms you might need for your project, so that they can be easily submitted into this system, delivering the necessary details to the right people at the right time. You can also upload PO and client invoices into the job jacket so your team has quick access to that information.
Advantage Software not only offers a central hub for all your project communication, it’s a central place to manage everything about your project including estimates, risk analysis, project financials, resource management and time tracking. This means you and your team won’t have to go hunting for information as you’re communicating about a project: it’s all right there in front of you!
As a central repository of information for everything pertaining to your project, Advantage offers the highest caliber of paperless communication. Chats, video conferencing and email can only do so much to galvanize your team around a project. You need a convenient place to go for information and a record of communication. If you have this, your agency can truly be flexible enough to manage any type of team, whether you operate in-office, on a hybrid schedule, remotely or some mix.
The Advantage agency management system is an all-in-one solution purpose-built for agencies and creative teams of all sizes.
We’ve been exclusively focused on helping our clients maximize productivity, efficiency and profitability for over 40 years, with almost a thousand agencies counting on us to help run their business every day.
With Advantage you get a team of US-based agency veterans supporting you every step of the way. All implementation and training is done by experienced Advantage staff, and all clients have unlimited access to our live customer support line from 8am-7:30pm Eastern every business day.
Find out how Advantage can help you by contacting us for a complimentary demo or discussion about your unique needs.