Creative production

This article will help you implement a creative production workflow. Learn how to track creative requests, manage team capacity, as well as develop and deliver assets on time and within budget.

Step 1: Build a creative request project

Use the project to manage ad-hoc creative requests (visual assets for social media) and creative briefs for bigger projects (kicking off a campaign).

Create a creative requests project in a couple of ways:

  1. Create a new intake project for creative requests. Learn about creating effective projects in Asana here.
  2. Use the creative requests project template. This template makes it easy to streamline your process for managing incoming requests and prioritizing and assigning work.

Consider using board view to track requests. Board view gives requesters greater clarity on how their request is progressing.

Create an intake form

Create a form to collect creative requests. Forms are directly connected to your project and ensure your team starts with all the information they need, in terms they understand. Forms can be submitted by anyone (even if they don’t use Asana) using the form link.
Once submitted, the form creates a new task in your project so it can be prioritized and assigned. The assignee has all the information needed to get started, since form responses are included in the task description. 

Forms allow communication directly with the form submitter via an Asana task, reducing context switching and saving time.If a request for a large, cross-functional, or complex initiative is received, simply convert the task into a project to manage it more effectively.

Automate your workflow using rules

To maximize time spent on creative production, try automating tasks to keep them moving through the creative process. When a request is prioritized and work kicks off, a rule can automatically notify the requester that work has begun.

Add rules to your project so that tasks get assigned to the right people by default, are automatically completed, or are moved to the correct sections as they progress.

Rules integrations allow a rule triggered in Asana to take an action in another app. Other teams (e.g. Marketing) may spend a lot of their day in MS Teams, in this case you can set up an automation to send a message to a teams channel to notify them once an asset has been approved and is ready to launch.

Centralize work by multi-homing tasks

Multi-homing means adding the same task to multiple projects in Asana. It avoids duplication by centralizing work; keeping various teams in the loop without requiring individual updates.

Every change made to the task, like comments or due date changes is reflected across each project, eliminating the need to update the task in each project individually.

Save time with project and task templates

Create standardized projects with templates to streamline your workflow and save a significant amount of time.

Task templates make it easy to standardize tasks in your project so you can set up the same tasks over and over again. This enables you to create repeatable workflows which don’t need to be created from scratch each time.

Step 2: Move work forward

Prioritize and filter requests with custom fields

Once you’ve created an intake project and set up a form, custom fields will help you prioritize incoming requests and sort them by category.

Save time by using Asana AI to organize requests within the various stages. Smart fields can auto-generate custom fields, making it easier for your team to prioritize and assign requests to members of the creative team.

Adding a Team field to your form means you can map it to the same custom field in your project. When a new request is submitted, the created task will specify which team needs to help with the request to quickly gauge its scope.

A Priority custom field can help the producer or manager prioritize requests relative to other work to keep their team on track.

Approval tasks

When a creative asset is ready to review, set up approval tasks so the entire team has clarity on whether the asset has been approved or if changes have been requested.

Utilize integrations in order to centralize feedback, save time context switching and ensure that no comments are missed. With Figma your creative team can embed the designs directly into an Asana task or in projects, so your team can reference the latest design work in context and alongside related project documents. 

Unlike screenshots, live embeds update in real-time to reflect changes made in a design file, eliminating the overhead that comes with finding the right files and updating images.

Keep creative requirements and request details in context with your designs with the Adobe Creative Cloud integration. Once work is underway, it can be difficult to keep key details, requirements, and feedback handy when creatives are working on the asset in programs like Adobe Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, or InDesign CC. Instead of losing time switching between tools or important context, simply keep the Asana task open in the Adobe Creative Cloud app.

Step 3: Report on progress

Portfolios

Set up a creative production portfolio to keep all of your creative work and intake request projects in one place. Creative team leads can gather all the projects tracking their deliverables into one portfolio so they can have an overview of how work is progressing at a glance.

Workload

Once you’ve created your portfolio, use workload to visualize your creative team’s capacity based on tasks they’re already assigned. Workload helps you make informed staffing decisions to manage bandwidth and keep work on track. Visit this Help Center article to learn how to use workload for creating reports, and implement best practices for effective workload management.

Dashboards and reporting

A dashboard is a visual representation of your project data. Setting up a project dashboard allows you to easily gather data to keep other teams informed on project progress, and answer questions they may have, especially around regional requests and bottlenecks.

Reporting allows you to consume and translate data in a visual, easily digestible format. Use reporting to report on requests by team, across regions, or on custom fields your team is using to organize requests. This can help you spot trends over time.

Keep stakeholders informed with status updates

Keep your team in the loop on project progress by posting regular status updates about asset delivery stats or audience reached metrics. Use AI to speed up this process with Smart status. Asana AI will draft status updates to help identify blind spots, open questions, roadblocks, and an efficient path towards your goals. Visit this article for more tips on building a great status update. 

You can also use Smart digests to see the latest activity from your Creative team and help you gather information for your updates. The digest will summarize all recent activities, like discussions, decisions, and work completed, in one place so it's easily scannable and provides valuable insights for your update.

Track time spent on work for billing or resource planning

Many creative teams need to have a clear sense on how many hours they spend on work—especially agencies, freelancers, or managers trying to staff projects accordingly. Instead of guesstimating or overcomplicating the tracking, creatives can use Asana’s native time tracking feature to estimate the time needed to complete a task, as well as record the actual time spent, and even compare the two.

Resources for planning and managing creative processes

Templates

Trainings

Case studies

Related articles

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