Creating (and Managing) Clients
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CREATING (AND MANAGING) CLIENTS
The first Client we recommend adding to CurrentTrack is your own agency. There’s a lot of work done for internal purposes (e.g. identity materials, office supply purchasing, etc.).
Within CurrentTrack, every Client has a Name and an Identifier, which is a unique alphanumeric. It can be any combination of numbers and/or letters, but cannot be more than one word or include symbols. It’ll make your life easier if you standardize your Identifiers — three letters and a numeral, for example, or a two-digit number.
ADDING A CLIENT
To add a Client, go to Admin — Agency Administration — Add Client. You can also click at the top of the screen.
The Add Client link opens an abbreviated Client Spec Sheet. All you’re going to do initially is give the Client a Name and an Identifier, and specify the account team — Account Supervisor(s), Account Coordinator(s), Account Executive(s), Copywriter(s), Designer(s), and Media Buyer(s). Later, you’ll assign someone else the Task of filling out the remainder of the Spec Sheet(s)(i.e. Description, contacts, Markup rate, Logo, etc.). Assigning someone else this Task (e.g. the Account Executive of the respective Client) does two things — it gets a lot of the data entry off your desk, and helps the people to whom the Tasks are assigned learn to use CurrentTrack.
If you’d like to enter additional Client information now, check the box beside Go to Client Spec Sheet; click Submit.
THE CLIENT SPEC SHEET
Once you’ve added your own agency as a Client, add the remainder of your Clients. Let your Account Executives, for example, know they’ll need to fill in their Clients’ Spec Sheets. You’ll need to first give them Permission to Edit Client Spec Sheet by going to Admin — System Administration — Manage Permissions.
EDITING A CLIENT SPEC SHEET
To Edit a Client Spec Sheet, go to Clients & Jobs — Client — I Want To: Edit Client Spec Sheet.
The Client Spec Sheet is divided into several different sections:
1. Primary Information
2. Corporate Address
4. Additional Location(s)
5. Client Login(s)
7. Client Keyring
8. Product Positioning
9. Target Audience
11. Additional Notes
Primary Information: Enter a brief Description of the Client (i.e. “what they do”), along with their primary e-mail address (e.g. firstname.lastname@example.org), Website, social media URLs, Media Commission rate (e.g. 0.15), Markup rate (e.g. 1.426), Bulk Permit No., and PMS Colors. If the Client is on a Retainer, check the corresponding box and enter the Monthly and/or Yearly Fee.
TIP: Avoid using comma + number combinations (e.g. 1,000.00) in the retainer Fee field.
Be sure to enter a default Client Markup rate, expressed as a factor. If you make a 20% margin, for example, your Markup rate will be 25%. Enter a factor of 1.25. If you make a 15% margin, your Markup rate will be 17.65%. Enter a factor of 1.1765. The default Markup rate will appear in all subsequent Estimates and Purchase Orders for the respective Client. The factor can then be manually overwritten on a document-by-document basis (if required). If you change the default Markup rate within a Client Spec Sheet, in the future, all previously filed documents will retain the old rate. Only new documents will reflect the new rate.
Corporate Address: Enter the Street, City, State and Zip+4 for the respective Client.
Contacts: Enter details for the Client’s Primary, Secondary, Billing and Delivery Contacts.
Additional Location(s): Enter the Name, Street, City, State/Province, Zip, Phone, and Contact name, of additional Client locations (if applicable). Any number of Locations can be included in a Client Spec Sheet; click Add Location for additional row(s).
Client Login(s): CurrentTrack automatically generates a default user Name and Login (i.e. password) for each Client. You may enter as many additional login profiles as desired for each Client (e.g. Ann Smith, Jane Landers, etc.); click Add Login for additional row(s).
TIP: Make sure Logins (i.e. passwords) are six to eight characters long and include letters, numbers and at least one special character (e.g. Ellv!s57 or Ch@ro38).
Logo(s): Upload files of any type (e.g. .jpg, .gif, .pdf, etc.) by clicking Choose File and selecting the desired item from your hard drive. Any number of files can be included in a Client Spec Sheet; click Add Logo for additional lines.
Client Keyring: If your agency is the administrator of a Client’s LinkedIn or Facebook page, for example, you can record credentials in this section. Any number of Logins can be included in a Client Spec Sheet; click Add Site for additional lines.
Product Positioning: What’s the consumer’s overall perception of the product or service, as compared to competitors?
Target Audience: Outline the demographics, psychographics, lifestyle characteristics, and perceptions of the consumer.
Competitors: Who are the Client’s main competitors?
Additional Notes: Include any unusual requirements such as multiple approvals in the Client’s organization, in the Notes section (e.g. “Both the President and Legal have to approve all creative files.”).
VIEWING A CLIENT SPEC SHEET
To View a Client Spec Sheet, go to Clients & Jobs — Client — I Want To: View Client Spec Sheet.
To view its Printer Friendly version, click on the printer icon located at the top of the screen.
If you’d like to more closely manage the Notifications your Employees receive — your Creative Director only receives Client Feedback for Clients A, B and X, for example — edit the Client’s Notifications by going to Clients & Jobs — Client — I Want To: Edit Client Notifications.
Add the appropriate Employee name(s) in the Notified column. For example:
Listed Employee(s) will receive Messages when the various forms are filed for the Client, or actions take place, in addition to any Default Employee(s). The Default Employee name(s) listed to the right of the Notified column are automatically pulled from Admin. To modify them, simply go to Admin — System Administration — Manage Default Notifications; click Submit.
ARCHIVING A CLIENT FOLDER
Should your agency end a Client relationship in the future, you’ll want to move their information to the Sleeping Clients folder.
TIP: Before moving a Client to the Sleeping Clients folder, put any Active jobs to Sleep and delete any incomplete Tasks in their Workback Schedules.
To move a Client folder, go to Clients & Jobs — Client — Edit Client Spec Sheet.
Change Client Status to Sleeping and click Submit. All jobs and associated documents will be moved to the Sleeping Clients folder. In addition, their contact information will appear in the Sleeping Client Address Book. The Sleeping Clients list can be easily exported by going to Clients & Jobs — Sleeping Clients — I Want To: Export to Excel.
To view a Client’s folder once it’s been archived, simply go to Clients & Jobs — Sleeping Clients. To view its associated documents and attachments, click on the Client Name — Sleeping Jobs — Title — I Want To: Open Documents Folder.
How can I manage new business information in CurrentTrack?
We recommend creating a Client called New Business. Each time you come in contact with a prospective Client (e.g. Kentucky Department of Tourism), open a job under the New Business Client. When you make a call, put together a proposal, etc., file a Progress Report (e.g. Subject = RFP details or Contact Information), add a Task to the job’s Workback Schedule (e.g. Call Jim at 3:00 p.m. or RFP due to Client), and put together a Production Estimate (if applicable). Because your active Tasks will have a Status of “working,” they’ll appear on your Assigned Task List and you can easily keep track of what’s going on.
Once a prospective Client becomes a official Client, add them to your site and open a Job Number (e.g. 2016 Travel Brochure). The contents of the job that previously fell under the New Business Client can then be moved over to the new job (Clients & Jobs — Client — Job One Sheet — I Want to: Edit This Job — Application Options (Move Entire Job To:)[your new Number]) and you’ll have all of its history to refer to as you move through the new project.
After you’ve moved the old job to the new Number, delete the old job folder by going to Clients & Jobs — Client — Job One Sheet — I Want to: Edit This Job — Application Options (Delete Entire Job).
How can I monitor yearly and monthly retainer Budgets in CurrentTrack?
To monitor a Client’s yearly retainer Budget, refer to the Financial Report Summary. For example, Acme has a 2016 retainer Budget of $20,000. Apply the following criteria:
|Job Type:||All Job Types|
|Media Type:||All Media Types|
|Status:||Both [Active and Sleeping]|
Refer to the Budget Total at the bottom of the Summary and manually weigh it against the yearly Budget (e.g. $20,000 – $12,550 = $7,450 “left for today to 12/31/16”). Remember, the Budget Remaining Total doesn’t reflect what’s left of the overall Budget. It merely reflects whether you’re over- or under-Budget on the jobs listed. Only on 12/31/16 will the Total reflect how closely you came to the $20,000 figure, as all jobs will have been opened and all time and expenses recorded at that time.
To monitor a Client’s monthly retainer Budget, refer to the Work In Progress Report (WIP). For example, Acme has a monthly Budget of $3,000. Simply apply the following criteria:
|Job Type:||All Job Types|
|Media Type:||All Media Types|
Refer to the WIP in Date Range Total, at the bottom of the Report, and manually weigh it against the monthly Budget (e.g. $3,000 – $2,500 = $500 “unused”). Remember, the WIP Report reflects only Active jobs. As such, you’ll need to leave all jobs open until the last day of the given month. Add a final Task (e.g. Archive job), with a Status of “working,” to the Workback Schedules of all finished jobs that remain open. You’ll then be alerted, via your Assigned Task List, that they needed to be put to Sleep after the number is calculated.
What’s the best way to manage retainer Client projects in CurrentTrack?
1. Open a job titled, “2016 Retainer” under the respective Client; enter a Budget reflecting the entire year (e.g. $3,000/mo. –> $36,000/yr.).
2. For each project requested during the year, open a separate Job Number (e.g. Spring Brochure); enter a Budget reflecting what the project would cost if you were executing it for a non-retainer Client (e.g. A typical 4C brochure = 2500.00).
a. Over the course of the project, enter Tasks, record time, submit P.O.s, et. al, just as you would with any other job.
b. At the conclusion of the project, create a $0.00 Billing Entry; archive the job.
3. Under the “2016 Retainer” job, create a Billing Entry reflecting the incurred amount of the job you just archived (e.g. Spring Brochure = 2450.00); include the job’s Title (and Number) in the Subject of the Billing Entry (e.g. Spring Brochure (ABC-16702)). Repeat steps 2 a-b for each job completed throughout the year.
4. Refer to the Financial Report of the “2016 Retainer” job, throughout the year, to determine if you’re within the overall retainer (e.g. Budget = 36000.00/yr.; Billed Amount to Date (think of this as “Incurred Amount to Date”) = 18000.00).
5. On 1/1/17 close the “2016 Retainer” job and open a new job for “2017 Retainer;” repeat steps 1-4.