Today I had the pleasure of presenting Redbooth to over 130 attendees as part of a new webinar series that Redbooth is doing. Redbooth saw (from previous conversations) how we were using their product and decided that they wanted to create a way to disseminate the Task List Templates that we had created. So this webinar was a chance for me to share how we use Redbooth to manage our Workflow and also explain the Task List Templates we created that folks were going to have access to.

I talked too much… So, we did not have enough time to get through everyone’s questions. I apologize for that. But I wanted to make sure that we got back to those of you that were kind enough to attend. If you asked the question below and I do not answer it fully then leave a comment and I will do my best to explain how we manage projects using Redbooth.

Again, thanks for attending. And thank you to Redbooth for giving us the opportunity.

For a video version of the answers:

 

For a written version of the answers:

How do you plan workload? By number of tasks?

No, in our world the number of tasks is not really relevant but the level of effort of those tasks is. So I plan based on that. Because I am familiar with the work being done it is easier for me to assign things based on level of effort. In Scrum terms this goes hand in hand with Velocity which is the speed in which a team can make it’s way through tasks. Level of effort effects that Velocity the number of tasks does not.

Is time tracking relevant for your business? If so, how do you manage it?

It is relevant. We use Harvest as it allows for invoicing, collecting of payment using Stripe and is simple to use.

Could you tell us again what tools you are using apart from Redbooth? I heard BitBucket or dploy for example.

Bitbucket for version control. Deploy.io (now Deploybot) for deployment. Redbooth for Project Management. Harvest for time tracking. Hip Chat for internal communication. And Agile CRM keeping tabs of Business Development and marketing automation.

Do you create an organization for each client or just a workspace?

Just Workspaces. Each new project with a client gets a new Workspace. A new Organization would get cost prohibitive and is really unnecessary.

DId you mean that 80% of your clients are currently using Redbooth for their own internal projects?

No I meant that of our projects some 80% use Redbooth as part of our work with them. I will say though, that my wife is a Realtor and uses it to manage her business. She loves it!

How has he engaged non-tech clients in using Redbooth?

Most of our clients are non-technical and I find that they have not had any issues working within Redbooth. It has to be presented to new clients as just the way you do business.

How do you get the other 20% on board? None of the organizations that I work with currently use Redbooth and there's a lot of resistance to using the platform.

Some people just don’t like working in any other medium than phone or email. It is just something we have to understand and work with.

How do you convince your customers that this way of working?

Again, I’ve not really had to convince them. It is presented as the way we communicate. We still allow for email but I tell them that I do not want to be a bottle neck and that emailing me does that. Redbooth gives them direct access to team members that can do the work they need.

How do you handle managing workflow for tasks that are due weeks in the future but require a cetain number of hours leading up to the due date?

Not sure I understand your question so I will take a stab at it and if I miss then email me and we’ll get you squared away.

With a nebulous task like Design Website how do you manage that when it may not be due for quite some time? Well, in typical Scrum fashion we try and break down tasks into more manageable pieces. So you’ll notice that in the templates we have Discuss Design, Create Wireframes, Create Use Cases etc etc. These all help build momentum to the main task of Design Website. So those tasks would be scheduled with due dates preceding the main task. And all of these will usually have sub tasks. So Create Wireframes will have subtasks for the different sections of the site (homepage, blog list, blog article, staff, etc.)

How do you set up the recurring task?

Fortunately Redbooth did a video on this one. It is actually quite easy though.

 

Do you use Scrum in Redbooth?

We are not strict adherents to Scrum as I find the overhead of Scrum to be difficult for smaller teams that are switching context often. We do borrow from it a bit with standups, Product Manager (me), Scrum Master (me). But with projects that are custom and smaller in scale finding velocity is difficult to near impossible.

In your company, did Redbooth obsolete the use of Outlook tasks and Calendar or do you integrate with those tools also as a concurrent tool?

We never used Outlook tasks. For almost all tasks other than Business Development we do not use email or calendar. We use Hip Chat for internal chit-chat type communication though. The only reason we do not use Redbooth Chat is because it did not exist when we started using TeamBox (previous name for Redbooth) so we were already ingrained in that product.

I will say that I even manage my personal tasks using Redbooth.

How do you use Redbooth for billing your clients?

We do not. I’m bugging them to add Time Estimation and Tracking to Redbooth but so far I have not been successful (Ines are you out there?). What I would love to see is a way of estimating time so we could create a workspace prior to putting together a proposal. We could then give the prospect access to the workspace and work with them to define requirements. We could then assign an estimate of hours or level of effort per task and come up with a good idea of what the project cost would be. We would need for the information to have Private/Public capabilities as well in case we want to use Value Pricing with the client. Because of Task List Templates I could easily build in a default bottom floor to our pricing based on previous work and then new tasks that are added would effectively be modifiers that increase the price.

Are you guys able to run reports based on the data entered in Redbooth?

Most of my needs are provided by the User Report and the Tasks By User. If you need in depth reporting then that is not really a question I can answer

Are you on the Enrerprise package?

No, you are probably referring to the different UI you were seeing during the demo. We were given early access to the new UI but as Samantha mentioned during the Webinar most people should see that in a week or so.

But don't you need 20+ users for HD videos?

No, per the pricing page you even get access to it in the bottom tier. You are limited but we have never gone over.

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