I once had a boss who used to defend the work of a creative group when a client complained by saying “Garbage in. garbage out.” Truth be told she used much more colorful language, but you get the point.

Workflow Puzzle Showing Process Flow Or ProcedureIn a previous post about creating and maintaining a good agency relationship I mentioned the importance of examining how you actually request a project from your agency/creative resource. We use a request form that has evolved over the last dozen years. Our team has used it both with internal resources and external ones. It’s designed to help the request or focus on the business challenge first and then the project. The least important part of this process is creative direction because we like to leave this part to the folks who have trained and studied the creative arts.

If you are in a position to request work from anyone providing creative services, we recommend you use this template or develop one of your own. We’d also like to see any great examples you may have as we are continuously striving to improve this step in the process to get great advertising…advertising that works.

I must admit that a friend passed on a new creative request form that is being used (as of yesterday). It seems to have landed with quite a thud. I’m not here to critique one form over the other, but I might offer a bit of a suggestion. Developing processes are important, particularly when you’re in a growth mode and work is coming at you at a fast and furious pace. However, with that sort of pace, it’s easy to shortcut your intentions when you present a new requirement. My recommendation is that you don’t just send a new process or form out via email. It should be delivered in person with the ability to ask questions and understand the need. Also, it’s important to note that this form is not about prioritizing work, but about understanding the request so that we can all develop advertising that works. If your form doesn’t provide for this type of discovery, you might want to consider renaming it a job ticket.

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