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With all the talk of remote work lately, people are finding more ways to contribute and connect with others, I thought I'd share a board that I find helpful as I work remotely with my team.
I manage paid social ads, and I basically serve as an in-house agency for various teams in my company. When they want ads created, they come to me, and I set it up and manage and report on them.
I was previously using Github and spreadsheets to manage the process, but it didn't work very well at scale, and it was difficult to do everything in either tool because spreadsheets didn't have a great conversation threading feature, and Github didn't have a great custom field feature.
Naturally, I decided this could be a good time to integrate Trello, so I decided to give it a go. And even though my team was initially averse to using something new, even they have found it to be a better process overall.
I'm about to share this process, and though I'll explain it from an ad requests point of view, you can replicate this to manage any type of requests you get from other teams or clients. It works great for asynchronous communication (perfect during these work from home days). No more meetings with clients in person or even over calls to discuss what you need to do... you can just create this process and customize as needed to fulfill requests quickly and accurately, all the while having everything documented.
Here's a template board that you can replicate for yourself.
Let me walk you through it.
1) How It Works List
There are multiple ways to accomplish this, but I find it easier to just make the first list of the board a how-to process. Explain what the requester needs to know. You can attach screenshots to the cards to outline the process and make it EXTREMELY clear what they're meant to do.
Your next couple lists should be a linear flow of how your work is accomplished. For instance, Requested, In Progress, and Completed. That way you can track how many requests are being completed at once! (If you want to track how long it takes you to get requests done, you could use the Time In List power-up.
2. Create a template request card.
You need to make a standard card that will contain everything you need for a request.
Use the card description to give the requester more instructions about what to add. You can also include a checklist for them if there are certain things you need them to do (such as attach a screenshot or provide access to a certain file or something else). Or create a checklist for yourself of activities that you need to accomplish when you get the request.
You can instruct people to add themselves as members or add labels or due dates when they're creating the cards. You can save this card as a Card Template so that anytime someone comes to your board, they'll be create a card and just fill in the info! (More tips on how to make this even easier when we get to the Butler section!)
3) Use custom fields to organize your info.
I like to use the custom fields power-up to organize additional information that I need in order to fulfill my requests. It keeps it more organized and feels more like filling out a form. It also breaks up having so many things in the card description. There are many data types you can use for custom fields, such as dates, numbers, text, drop downs, or checkboxes.
4) Supercharge with Butler.
Okay so this board is pretty cool as is, but I've found a few ways to make it even better with Butler. First of all, I created a board button that generates a "request an ad" card (based on the card template I created at the start). It's much easier to tell requesters to "click the 'request' button at the top of the board", then telling them to go create a new card from a template, or to copy another card.
Next, I created a Butler rule to auto-assign me to any card added in the "requested" list. This way I would automatically be assigned to the card. (I could have done this with the card template as well, but Butler makes it easier to scale, as eventually I'll have more people on my team and need to create rules for assigning cards, rather than every card being assigned to me.)
Finally, I created an additional checklist called "organic" and set up a Butler rule that says when the "organic" label is applied, it should add the Organic checklist to a card and assign my colleague who works on organic social requests.
Reminder: here's the template if you want to take it for a spin and try it for yourself! It works great for teams even if you're not working remotely, but just want to manage all of your requests and projects to ensure nothing falls through the cracks.
Software Engineer + Productivity Enthusiast
Baton Rouge, Lousiana, USA
166 accepted answers