Briefs, sometimes referred to as requests, are an excellent way to gather information from your clients. This can be done before, during and even after the work is done, depending on your workflow.
In this article we'll review how to add a brief to your FP system.
What Are Briefs?
Briefs are a very versatile part of the system which can be used in a variety of ways.
Many companies use the Briefs module to collect information from their clients on the creative direction of a campaign or job. Others use the Briefs section as an area to map out plans for upcoming events.
Where Do Briefs Fit In?
Briefs are typically created at the beginning of the job, but can be added to an Estimate, Job or Project at any point in the workflow process. You can also add multiple briefs to a Job. If you have signed up for FP Portal, your clients will also be able to fill in and submit a brief to your agency.
Adding a Brief: When No Estimate/Job Created
Hover over Briefs in the main navigation bar, and choose Add Brief.
After selecting to Add Brief you will be dropped into the Brief Add page. Click the magnifying glass icon in the Brief Template field to see all of your active templates.
Then fill in the required fields (marked in blue) and any optional fields as well - Budget and Delivery Date are recommended choices. Details can always be added or edited later. Click Submit to move into the question/ answer fields of the template.
Fill out the Brief and click Submit to save this page and move to Page 2, or just save it as a 1 page only Brief.
Any questions that were marked as Required in the template, will be marked in blue. You will not be able to Submit the Brief without completing those fields.
Once the Brief is saved, you have the options to print a copy of it. You can create up to 3 "looks" for the Brief printout, showing more or less data, or with different branding. To learn more, please review these articles:
And you can also edit the content of the answers on the Brief anytime by clicking the Edit Details button.
Adding a Project or Estimate/ Job from the Brief Details Page
Once you have a completed Brief, you have options to turn this into work in the system. If you want to add a single component Job, click the Add Estimate button. If you need to add multiple components, then hit the Add Project button.
Clicking Add Brief brings us to this screen. The Estimate Name, Company, Estimate Contact, AE, Budget and Office fields for the Estimate (or Project had we chosen the Add Project option) have been populated by the data on the Brief. This information can be adjusted as needed before completing the Estimate or Project creation. You will still need to fill in some required fields, as well as select the appropriate Services or Expenses to get this work done.
You can always easily refer back to the Brief as needed, as it will be stored in its own tab at the Estimate or Project levels.
Adding a Brief to an Estimate, Project or Job
You don't need to start with a Brief to have a Brief associated to your Estimate, Job or Project. You will see the Add Brief option on Estimates, Projects or Jobs in your system.
Choosing this option will take you through the process of adding a Brief, once you choose a template. Information on the Add Brief page has pulled from the Job (in this example), and can be edited/ added to as needed.
Receiving a Brief Through the Client Portal (Portal Subscribers Only)
Clients can also submit a brief through the Client Portal, on the tab called Requests > Create New Request. Required fields are marked with a star. Portal users can fill in required and any optional fields. They will be able to choose from any Active Brief Templates, but will only see Page 1 and/ or Page 2 if those pages are marked as Client Visible.
Portal users just click Save & Next to easily navigate along.
For more information on the Client Portal set up and complete process, please review that chapter in the Library.
The submitted Brief will now be pushed to your FP system. You can even set up System Alerts so that you, or other team members are contacted about new Brief Submissions. Clicking the Brief name in the Alert will take you to it.
And from the Brief page, you can generate a Project or Estimate. The Estimate can be shared with your Portal user, for their approval or review.
Adding Multiple Briefs to a Job
There is no limit to the number of Briefs associated to a Job. We've seen several clients successfully practice having 3 per Job as standard - 1 to initiate the work, 1 to check-in mid way on how the client feels on their progress, and 1 to wrap up and learn from the client feedback.
From any Job page, choose the Add New menu, and choose Add Brief.
You will be taken to the Add Brief page. Repeat these steps to add all the Briefs you need for a Job.
Saved Briefs will be stored under the Briefs tab for this Job, for easily retrieval.
Copy a Brief
Any Brief that is saved in your system can be easily copied. From any Brief page, click the Actions button and choose Copy Brief.
The copy will generate, with COPY in the name. All fields are editable though, with required fields marked in blue. You have the option to copy both the brief questions and answers, or the questions only.
Note that any files attached to the original brief do not become part of the copy.
Click Submit when ready, and this new brief, based off of a current brief, will be saved in your system.
We hope you'll enjoy using Briefs in your FP system. And we welcome your questions or concerns: firstname.lastname@example.org