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How to Implement Consent Mode on Your Website: Tips and Tricks
Productivity 10 min read

How to Implement Consent Mode on Your Website: Tips and Tricks

Data protection is a new trend. Users want to be confident that their privacy is the highest priority. Companies need to collect information about their users to make their products more targeted and personalized. Every target audience is limited. And it’s hard to create a target audience and make personalization better without the user’s data. Consent Mode is used to manage tags, scripts, or services’ behavior based on the given user’s consent. The default settings for Consent Mode and the banner requirements depend on the user’s location. There are different options regulated by the data protection laws, for example: GDPR — protects European Union users LGPD — protects Brazilian users CCPA — protects Californian users The main principles are the same: You have a default consent statement and, after the user’s reply, you change the data collection process based on the received answer. Many vendors on the market propose so-called out-of-the-box solutions, but several implementation steps are needed to start. These tools are named Consent Management Platforms (CMP) and mainly consist of two components: A consent banner that is shown based on the described rules inside the tool A consent mode mechanism that sends the user’s consent to your system In most cases, the blocking mechanism is not on the vendor’s side — meaning that you and your company are fully responsible for legal compliance. There are a lot of protective laws, but let’s concentrate on one of the most important ones: GDPR. You can’t collect a user’s data without direct consent if the user is from a GDPR country. The consent mode system works in the mode “fire tags/scripts/services — not fire tags/scripts/services.” Several options could improve the data collection process. The most significant is Google Consent Mode, Google’s solution for improving data collection techniques. Of course, it requires a separate implementation. It’s useful if you use Google infrastructure (Google Consent Mode, Google Analytics, etc.). Try Wrike for free Problematics In a nutshell, we want to collect as much information as possible, be legally compliant, and integrate both CMP and Google Consent Mode (GCM). But what challenges do we face? CMP integration with GCM is quite hard to prepare CMP and GCM work on different principles. Even if the selected vendor has a direct connection with Google Consent Mode, it means that you would have a delay between the page load and the consent received. There is also a problem with returning users. For example, let’s say a user from an EU country visited your website two days ago and gave their full consent. Today, they visited the website again. If you use the built-in GCM mechanism inside your CM platform, there would be the following steps: Default Google Consent Mode command for EU users (denied all the storages) Waiting for the CMP info about the user’s previous consent Google Consent Mode update command In this case, you‘ll either wait too long to fire Google and other tags or collect information that you could collect without consent (which would be extremely limited). And, of course, many vendors don’t have Google Consent Mode integration. There would be a delay between the CMP-sent events and the page load If you have several third-party services on your website, you most likely use ready container solutions like Google Tag Manager (GTM). GTM allows you to simply and quickly implement and change all the code snippets inserted on the website. CMP sends the events that help you understand the user’s consent level. This information influences the tags’ behavior change. That means the user’s consent information could only be sent after the GTM has loaded. It causes a delay of several seconds — and that’s crucial! Most tags should fire as soon as possible. Users could leave the site soon, and you wouldn’t be able to track them at all. No one can confirm that 100% of events are sent properly from the website to the GTM, which is the second reason why we cannot fully rely on this mechanism. There could be restrictions connected to the website structure, performance issues, etc There are some CMPs that (based on their instruction) can be implemented directly via GTM — “no developers needed,” as their advertising promises. In this case, the delay between the user’s consent statement and page load would be so high that data collection becomes meaningless. A CMP is also a third-party system that could negatively influence your website performance, which is crucial for SEO optimization, organic search, and user experience. For example, the site could take too long to load. Implementation issues Let’s come to the moment when you select the CMP. First of all, it doesn’t matter if it has direct implementation with GCM or not. Secondly, if the selected solution has a GTM installation option, don’t use it. Let’s discuss why. Why you shouldn’t implement CMP via GTM 1. GTM should be implemented at the head of the website. Unfortunately, this is not always so due to site performance, load time, security reasons, etc. Because of this, there’s a delay between the site loading and the GTM load. That leads to a delay between the site load and the CMP load, which means potential data losses. 2. We can’t control that GTM will be loaded in 100% of cases. That means you can’t control whether CMP will always work on your website. It could lead to data losses and a fine for a data protection breach. Even large companies like WhatsApp and Google have faced GDPR problems. The biggest fine in history was paid by Amazon in July 2021 to the tune of $877 million. 3. There would be a delay between the page load and banner appearance. The main problem is that you need to wait until GTM loads, run the CMP default state, and only after that set the default consent state. That’s why the delay between the Consent Initialization trigger and the Default CMP mode is too great. We should also be aware of the delay caused by GTM implementation. Those are the three main reasons why it’s not the best idea to implement CMP via GTM. Of course, if you have a simple site structure, you could experiment with different implementation issues, but my common advice is to implement CMP directly on the website. Process flow Let’s discuss the process scheme. The baseline can be found in the picture below. The main idea is to separate the data load process into two main branches: new users and returning users. At the same time, the new user group also should be divided into two parts: users without data collection restrictions and the opposite group. Consent mode loading process With the presented scheme, we achieve the following goals: We are fully law-compliant and collect data only for those users who consent. We manage Google Consent Mode and, based on the received data, the Google-based tags are updated automatically. We avoid delays between page load and data collection beginning. I guess that, at this point, we could call ourselves the Consent Heroes!   Try Wrike for free The processing speed: Hints and tricks One of the best ways to speed up the default statement load is to prepare the cookie on the website side, which contains the consent values for the user. There can be different cookie categories. For example, Google separates all cookies into five different buckets. It depends on your company’s needs and the expected user behavior. You need to carefully review the services, tools, and cookies you use and find the balance between the desired categories, implementation issues, and user experience. Be aware of the fact that you should represent each category on your CMP banner. Let’s consider the most classic situation with the three main groups: Requirement bucket: Strictly necessity cookies. The site can’t work properly without them Functional bucket: Supports the site’s functionality and common stat Advertising bucket: All services and functions connected to advertising The idea is to code the bucket values in a cookie that should send the values directly to GTM based on the user’s IP location. For example, you could code a functional bucket as “2” or “b.” In this case, we improve the loading speed because: We should not wait for the CMP full load on the website The default statement will be received before the container loaded trigger when the majority of tags should fire Another option is to unite the region-specific and basic Google Consent Mode default commands. There is an option to manage the Google Consent Mode default state for different locales, which means you need to wait for both events before any other tags can fire. There is a small trick that could improve this stage, which we’ll discuss in the next chapter. CMP and Google Consent Mode alignment: Step-by-step instructions Say you have selected the CMP solution that perfectly meets your needs. You conducted the tests, discussed the process with the developer’s team, and solved all the issues with GTM. What should you do next? How do you align the selected CMP with Google Consent Mode? Here is a simple step-by-step guide. 1. Create a custom template in GTM Templates are needed to create the custom tags and variable definitions, so others within your organization can use them alongside the built-in tag and variable templates. In the case of GCM implementation, there are two main options: Use the custom template created by one of the developers, GTM researchers, or vendors; or prepare it on your own. If you want to use a pre-prepared custom template, you need to carefully review it with security because the template will need to write and read access. Options: Pre-prepared custom template: The best template found during my GCM research is Simo Ahava’s template, which is pretty simple to use and adapts to your needs. Here’s his article with the full description. The Google Consent Mode template instruction: This has the same instruction but needs to be adopted. 2. Implement custom CMP on your website The basic implementation consists of copying and pasting the CMP implementation code. But two action items should be completed first: The place where you implement the CMP code. The basic instruction usually requires you to implement it in the head of your website code. But this can harm your website performance and SEO optimization, so it should be carefully checked If you decide to add a custom cookie to improve the processing speed, this is the right stage to do so. Remember, the main point here is to collect consent before the final CMP load and send it to GTM before the container-loaded event. In this term, we could launch the tags earlier and collect more data. 3. Turn on Google Consent Mode in Google Tag Manager Go to the admin interface and turn on the Google Consent Mode setting. You will see the following sign in your tags section. 4. Make small adjustments in the Google consent mode template Update the region formula. As we discussed earlier, every company wants to collect as much data as possible while remaining legally compliant. The more markets you have, the more laws you have to follow. For example, in some countries, you can collect data by default. However, there is a GDPR law in Europe, so the user’s data can be collected only after the user’s consent. That means you have to use region-based behavior: two separate default commands for the specified regions and all the others. The small trick here is to use the same consent default command for all the regions and make it region-based at the same time. There are two steps to consider: Create a custom constant variable and make it region-based. For example, create a constant variable with the list of countries where you want to specify the user’s behavior. Specify the values for Google Consent Mode storage with the help of custom JavaScript variables. The baseline here is to deny or grant them by default, but change them when the consent is updated. That’s why two commands are usually needed for region-based behavior. I suggest changing their value from the very beginning based on the geo-location rules with the help of the custom variable from the previous step. For example, you could use the following points to make analytical_storage denied or granted from the very beginning before the container has loaded — specify it as the custom JavaScriptvariable: Use CMP country value if applicable to set the storage value for granted countries where it’s normal for the new users. Compare the received value with the region constant variable created in the previous step. Update the value based on the customer-created cookies — this helps update its value for returning users earlier. For example, if the cookie collects “2,” that means that functional storage is allowed => analytics_storage = granted The structure of the default command tag will be the following: 5. Change your tag’s behavior based on the received consent There can be three main categories: Google-based tags Triggers: only the standard one (like pageview) Exception triggers (no need) Change their behavior based on Google Consent Status Google-based tags have the building consent. They will check their values and manage their behavior based on the received data. Here is the description for the Google Analytics tag. Event-based tags — tags that should fire if the specific event occurs: Triggers: Selected event Exception triggers: Triggers based on the denied CMP consent — category-based Fires if the event occurs and we have CMP consent Not event-based tags and not Google-based tags There are two main options: Model their behavior based on Google consent — in this case, they are not modeling their behavior but firing when Google consent was given Model their behavior based on CMP events — the same, but CMP-based 6. Double-check the client Id and ga object settings In some cases, Google Consent Mode use could prevent the loading of ga object and client Id values. Mostly it causes harm if you use the Google Universal Analytics version (or GA4 and Universal Analytics at the same time). To avoid data losses, add the trigger “ga object defined” to the connected tags. For example, the trigger could be created as the custom event trigger that should fire at any event when the ga_object variable is defined. These are the main steps that should be taken to implement CMP and GCM and, of course, to connect them. The next step is to start testing. The best indicator that something is wrong is Google Analytics data: both in the interface and the database if you use the Google Analytics data import (direct or via API). The best practice here is to prepare a list of key and additional metrics and add them to the control dashboard with alerting issues. After this very last step, you can finally be named the Consent Mode Hero! These steps can help you improve your data collection cycle, avoid data losses and page load delays, and eliminate GDPR problems. This article was written by a Wriker, in Wrike. See what it’s like to work with us and what career development opportunities we offer here. Also, hear from our founder, Andrew Filev, about Wrike’s culture and values, the ways we work and appreciate Wrikers, and more here. Try Wrike for free

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How Wrike Puts Strategy, Goals, and Sprints in Sync
Productivity 10 min read

How Wrike Puts Strategy, Goals, and Sprints in Sync

A company with a big product or product portfolio has to work to synchronize strategy with the daily efforts of each employee. If teams act out of order, the strategy remains just a beautiful document. In this article, we’ll unveil how our company aligns goals at different levels, what goals are set at different stages of planning, and who is involved in planning. Wrike has three levels of product goals: Annual Quarterly Team-specific sprint goals At each level, there are employees who build processes and are responsible for achieving the goals. Strategy and annual goals Wrike has a company strategy and a product strategy that supports it. To understand how they relate, let’s look at an example. If a company wants to operate more in the enterprise segment, certain product changes should follow — that is product strategy. Company strategy is much broader. In addition to product changes, we need, for example, to change the way we hire people in the sales department, restructure marketing, etc. Company strategy is about which market segments we want to go into, while product strategy is about how the product needs to be changed to enter these segments effectively. Since product strategy and company strategy are closely related, their updates occur synchronously. We usually review the strategy once a year. Company strategy is the ​​responsibility of the executive team, in which the product organization is represented by the VP of Product. The executive team meets regularly and, as a result, defines the overall strategy of the company. That is how it becomes clear what we want to achieve as a company. The product team is less involved in this process: for example, the VP of Product can ask someone to work on a specific issue or prepare the necessary data. The product team is much more involved in product strategy. The VP of Product is responsible for this process and all product teams are engaged. To better understand the product strategy process, it is important to understand how our product team is structured. It consists of separate divisions (units). Each unit has its own leader. In this article, we will call them Lead Product Manager, but it can also be the Director of Product or Senior Product Manager. Within the units there are product teams, each headed by a product manager. The formation of the product strategy takes place in two directions: top-to-bottom and bottom-to-top. Top-to-bottom is the general vector of product development formed by the VP of Product. To do this, they use different input data: company strategy, general market trends, competitive research, reports from analytical agencies like Gartner, product sales analytics (e.g., stronger segments, growing segments, etc.). All this information helps us understand what to focus on. In addition, it allows us to understand our limitations. What resources can we invest in product development this year? What percentage do we need to spend on mandatory support processes, such as improving the technical platform and fixing defects? Top-to-bottom direction forms the framework within which concrete proposals for strategic initiatives need to be formulated. Bottom-to-top direction is ideas for strategic initiatives from the product team. They are formulated by Lead Product Managers but generally, they first consult with product managers from their unit. This is an opportunity for PMs to submit their ideas and participate in the formation of product strategy. When all proposals are collected, they are discussed at a series of meetings of unit leaders, where each idea is evaluated. We consider investment areas that will later be included in the product strategy according to different criteria. The prioritization processes are constantly refined and improved. For example, we can calculate the possible ROI from the implementation of some idea, see how it fits within the company strategy, and evaluate each idea according to ICE. After discussions and prioritization, the VP of Product analyzes the results and draws up the product strategy for the next year. The formed strategy first goes through a feedback loop. Lead product managers carefully study and discuss it, and then bring it to a meeting of all product managers. The output is a refined product strategy: Investment mix: This includes where and how much in percentage we will invest this year. High-level product goals of the year: An example of such a goal could be to release a solution for a new market segment or make the product cover some new big business needs. High-level goals serve as inspiration and usually turn out to be quite abstract in the sense that it is not at all obvious how exactly these goals can be achieved. There should be quite a few such goals. This year we have three of them. For each goal, we define a core metric on how we will measure success. Specific sub-objectives for each goal: These chart the path to the higher-level goals that we all believe in as a team. At the same time, this path is still formulated quite abstractly at the level of intermediate goals that we want to achieve, not specific features. For example, I’m currently in charge of a goal called “Improve Configurability of Platform.” A specific Lead Product Manager is responsible for each of its sub-objectives. Their task at the planning stage is to clarify the sub-objectives and, together with the product analyst, determine the metrics for those. We will work on the goal metric throughout the year, so for the metrics at the sub-objective level, we set quarterly goals. Quarterly Goals Quarterly goals stem from the sub-objectives defined during the yearly planning and may, to a limited extent, overlap with them. By the beginning of quarterly planning, we already have, in first approximation, Objectives (sub-objectives for top-level annual goals) and Key Results (goals for the metrics that we have defined for each quarter). But since the beginning of the year, some changes could have occurred, so some of the goals may be revised. We may decide not to work on some goals in the next quarter and instead focus only on part of the goals. There may also be additional new targets in a particular quarter. Like annual goals, quarterly goals are first discussed between the VP of Product and Lead Product Managers (who confer with their product management team). After discussing quarterly goals with unit leaders, the VP of Product presents quarterly goals at a general meeting of all product managers, answers questions, and collects feedback. The next task for product managers is to propose concrete initiatives that will help achieve this goal and the desired change in the metric. Ideas for initiatives are discussed within the unit with all product and development managers (after all, initiatives must be realistic). We hired unit managers in our company to be responsible for development within units. They help to plan how, where, and which teams to assign. Plus, the teams themselves can assess their capabilities and understand which initiatives they are ready to take on in the next quarter and which they are not. Ideas may also require discussion with other teams and units. Wrike is a large and complex product and you often need the help of other teams to achieve a goal. In order to properly formulate quarterly plans, it is necessary to take into account and calculate all these dependencies and agree on how we will achieve the overall result. After all discussions, plans are brought into the Wrike app, which is our main management tool. To make sure that we have the same understanding of what the plans turned out to be and why, a general meeting is held, at which the Lead Product Managers present the plans of the unit. The meeting is attended by all product managers and development managers, as well as everyone who wants to. Sprint Goals A specific team is responsible for sprint goals, including their product manager. All teams at Wrike work according to Scrum with a two-week iteration (very convenient when the planning cycle is aligned across the entire company). Specific processes can seriously differ from team to team. It has to be convenient for the team, while all the company requires is for each team to have a product increment at least once every two weeks that brings us closer to the common goal. The team as a whole builds sprint goals to achieve the quarterly goals that we jointly formulated for the quarter. Usually, the team highlights progress against quarterly goals on the Sprint Review. All teams try to set ambitious goals, so sprint goals are sometimes not met. We believe that this is not a big deal because the team is tasked to plan each sprint so that the unit gets closer to the overall quarterly goal. Planning tools We try to make the most of the Wrike app, at least for dogfooding purposes. You can build different levels and hierarchies of goals. We feed it annual goals, sub-objectives, quarterly plans with metrics, and even sprint goals. Goals can be viewed in different sections. For example, if a product manager plans sprints, they may not look at other goal hierarchies at all. At the same time, the connection between the levels is preserved and can always be traced or visualized. We use Wrike primarily for the implementation stage. The development of different options for plans and brainstorming is often done in Excel or Miro since those are better suited for working with unstructured data. Structure of goals in Wrike Company strategy (exec team) — annually Product strategy — annually. Driver — VP of Product Inputs: Company strategy Market data (trends, analysts, competitors, win/loss, etc.) Current investment mix Proposed areas of investments (Lead PMs in collaboration with PMs) -> evaluation Outcome: Investment mix Annual goals with metrics (three this year) Sub-objectives with metrics (e.g., improve configurability of the platform) Objective priorities Each objective has a responsible Lead PM who refines the definition and drives metrics discussion Feedback loop Quarterly goals: Sub-objectives for this quarter Suggested by VP Product, feedback loop Clarified metrics for the quarter — Lead PM + Analyst Proposed initiatives — PMs+teams, discussed with Lead PM, presented to a broader group Cross-unit dependencies resolving Sprint goal (Set by PM + team) This article was written by a Wriker, in Wrike. See what it’s like to work with us and what career development opportunities we offer here. Also, hear from our founder, Andrew Filev, about Wrike’s culture and values, the ways we work and appreciate Wrikers, and more here.

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Wrike Lock: The Key to Encryption Management
Wrike Tips 10 min read

Wrike Lock: The Key to Encryption Management

How does Wrike keep customer data safe? Developer Daniil Grankin dives into the concept of Encryption as a Service (EaaS) as well as the unique functionality of Wrike Lock.

3 Ways Wrike Is More Customizable Than The Competition
Project Management 5 min read

3 Ways Wrike Is More Customizable Than The Competition

Find out what makes Wrike the most customizable work management platform on the market.

Go ‘Lightspeed’ in 2023: Solving Work’s Toughest Challenges

Go ‘Lightspeed’ in 2023: Solving Work’s Toughest Challenges

See all new features with our VP of Product.

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What Is Wrike AI?
Wrike Tips 3 min read

What Is Wrike AI?

Want to eliminate project delays, manual tasks, and unnecessary admin? Meet Wrike AI, your new BFF for work.

3 Reasons Why You Should Integrate Miro With Wrike (And How)
News 5 min read

3 Reasons Why You Should Integrate Miro With Wrike (And How)

Wrike is one of the best work hubs out there. It has features all teams love, a smooth learning curve, and is a powerhouse in managing projects. But even the star players need a little backup, and that’s where tools like Miro come in.  While Miro’s a great place to conduct brainstorming sessions, your roadmap planning, and your retrospectives, going from planning to execution isn’t always as easy. And it almost always involves a ton of copying and pasting. But it shouldn’t be that way. By integrating your Miro boards with Wrike, you can go from planning to execution faster with less work. Here’s why that matters — and how you can do it. Reason #1: You should always be using the best tool for the job Miro is not a project management tool, and trying to run a project in Miro is like trying to put furniture together using a turkey baster. Sure, it’s the perfect tool for a very specific job, but it doesn’t make sense anywhere else. Your team is using Wrike for a reason — because it’s a best-in-class project management solution. But in the same way that Miro isn’t built to manage projects, Wrike doesn’t have all the brainstorming features that Miro does. It’s best to use each respective app for its intended purpose. With the right integration solution, you can make sure that’s the case for every team. So, instead of trying to make your tools do everything, help them stay in their lane. Everyone will be happier for it. Reason #2: No one should have to copy-paste a brainstorm You’ve just finished the brainstorm session. Everything makes sense, you’ve got some great ideas, and you’re excited about what comes next. But have you ever gone back to look at a brainstorming board after the session’s over? It’s a mess with post-its everywhere, half-scrawled notes you meant to clean up, and sections that don’t even make sense anymore. And it’s going to be someone’s job to make sense of all this, so they can copy and paste it into Wrike — where the work is actually going to get done. Wouldn’t you rather get the project started than spend time copying and pasting data over? You could try and make brainstorming sessions follow a more rigid structure, but then you’d probably lose out on some of the best ideas. So what do you do? You integrate Miro with Wrike. That way, the ideas you select for future work automatically get synced to your Wrike projects. From there, you can flesh them out, build out your task hierarchy, scope out your projects, and get things done. No more copying and pasting necessary. Reason #3: Saving on licenses How tight is your app budget right now? Are you already being asked to find places to cut spending?  Whether it’s your teams that are both in Wrike and Miro or you’re working with consultants, you might be overpaying for your licenses. After all, not everyone who needs Wrike to execute work needs a Miro license, especially if all they do is check in on a brainstorm from time to time. Same thing with contractors who help you brainstorm. Do they need a Wrike license? Do you even want to give them access to your Wrike projects? When you have an integration solution, you can make sure that every contributor only has access to the tools they absolutely need without missing the context they need to do their work. That means everyone can do their best work from their favorite tool. So, you need an integration. Where do you look? How to use Wrike Sync by Unito to integrate You don’t need to get a new tool to sync Miro cards with Wrike tasks. The Wrike Sync add-on by Unito can sync Wrike tasks with Miro seamlessly. You get access to this add-on as long as you have a Wrike Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, or Enterprise Pinnacle plan. Wrike Sync by Unito is a no-code workflow management solution that lets you connect tools like Wrike, Miro, Jira, BitBucket, Salesforce, and more with your Wrike projects. As long as you’re an account owner, enabling Wrike Sync is easy: Visit the Subscription panel of your Wrike settings and enable the Wrike Syncs trial. Click Create flow to start linking your Wrike projects with Miro and get more out of both tools. Here’s more information on doing that. Miro Miro on the wall Your brainstorm sessions shouldn’t require a bunch of extra manual work or copying and pasting post-it notes into Wrike. By connecting Wrike to your Miro boards using Wrike Sync, you can accomplish more faster, by moving from the brainstorming stage to your project automatically, without switching tools. To get started, request a free trial of Wrike Sync and follow the two-step instructions above. You’ll be glad you did.

Secondment: Maximize Your On-the-Job Training
Wrike Tips 10 min read

Secondment: Maximize Your On-the-Job Training

Having a pre-made secondment strategy can be a lifesaver for companies.  Often, companies require additional employees to complete critical ongoing projects or work in their sister organizations. They may also want to create an internal talent pipeline that can be used during succession planning or sudden voluntary exits. Meanwhile, employees can learn new skills, expand their network and gain new experiences, all without leaving their employer.  But you may be wondering, ‘What is secondment’?  In this article, we will be taking a closer look at the secondment definition, how it works, and why creating and implementing a secondment strategy can be a smart way to gain career success. What is secondment? Secondment is a short-term transfer from your primary position to another role. The movement may be to another department or a sister, client, or partner company. Companies can second employees to: Another department within the same company  Another role in the same department and company A newly created position in the company A different role in a client or partner organization A new role in a sister company A project-based role with their vendor or service provider Secondment explained Some companies may have a standard secondment program with policies in place, while others may prefer to use secondment as and when required. Let’s take a closer look at how secondment works in an organization and impacts employees. Duties When a seconded employee or ‘secondee’ moves to their secondment, they are assigned new duties and responsibilities. They take up the new assignments for the prescribed time for a third party or the same organization. Even while they carry out the secondment duties, they make sure to keep their obligations to their original employer. This could be in the form of certain instructions or procedural requirements. Compensation and expenses The original company usually retains the employee on their payroll even as the seconded employee moves to their new position. After completing their responsibilities in the seconded role, they return to their previous position in the company. Secondees may keep the same compensation and benefits for roles similar in scope and nature to their original role. Moving to positions with significantly higher responsibilities can increase compensation and benefits. Companies also account for additional secondment expenses such as relocation, training, overtime, or bonuses. Transparency Many secondments may be communicated through phone calls, in-person discussions, or virtual meetings. However, it is also critically important to document and record all details of the secondment.  Companies organizing secondments within the organization may not consider the paperwork vital. But having clear documentation and transparency is essential to formalize the contract while clarifying everyone’s expectations. Consider adding the third party to the contract terms and conditions if the position is with them and not with the original employer. While the exact secondment term might vary from one organization to another, having a written contract keeps all the stakeholders on the same page. Employment relationship Speak to your original employer to confirm how the secondment would impact the employee-employer relationship. Discuss how the existing employer relationship will be maintained and if you will be moved to the third-party payroll. In most secondments, the original employer continues to be your formal employer and is responsible for your compensation and benefits. Meanwhile, the employee continues to fulfill their duties to the organization, including clarifying any potential conflict of interest. Leave and absences When companies draw up secondment agreements, they include provisions for leave and absences. Make sure to discuss the policy regarding leave and absences and how they will be treated. Here are some questions that should be clarified: Which organization’s leave and absence policy will be followed? Which company is responsible for approving leave – the third party or the original employer? To whom should the leave be reported? How will the work responsibilities be handled if unforeseen sick or emergency leave occurs? Confidentiality In secondments, since you’ll be working for two different employers, they may have concerns about the confidentiality of their (or their client’s) information. In such cases, you need to thoroughly review and understand your obligations to protect the company’s sensitive information before starting the secondment. Way forward Secondments are temporary transfers that end once the prescribed time is over. Mentioning the exact closure terms in the secondment agreement can provide transparency and clarity to all stakeholders. You can start by asking a few questions to see if the important elements are covered: When does the secondment end? Does it have a specific date or will it be whenever the assigned duties and responsibilities are completed? Is there any chance of finishing the secondment earlier than the prescribed date? Who is in a position to end the secondment prior to the scheduled end date? Is it the third party, the original employer, or me? What happens after the secondment period is over? Do I return to my original position or start another secondment? What are my options after completing the secondment if my original position is unavailable? Can the secondment be extended? What are the grounds on which the secondment can be extended? Can the secondment extend and turn into a full-time role after the prescribed time is over? Advantages of seconding employees Here are some reasons that make secondments a win-win for employees and employers. Prevent burnout Employee burnout is on the rise. Research confirms that more than 66% of full-time employees have experienced chronic work stress at some point in their careers. Burnout leads to disengaged employees, high turnover, and increasing absenteeism levels. The impact of burnout on employers is also severe. Harvard Business Review research suggests that workplace stress could cost the US economy alone $500 billion and approximately 550 million lost workdays. Using secondment as an intentional employee retention strategy can work wonders. Secondment can help employees meet new people and gain unique experiences while broadening their career perspectives. It can also enable employees to pick up projects that align with their career interests and fit into their work-life balance. Career growth opportunities Experience and skills gained from a new secondment are valuable and can stay with you forever. A secondment can also be prominently highlighted on your resume or LinkedIn profile. It shows potential employers that you are flexible, dynamic, and open to exploring new career pathways. If you’re contemplating moving into another role that requires similar skills and experiences that you possess, a secondment can help you try it out. Since this is a short-term assignment, it offers a low-risk opportunity to work in the new job role and see if you like it. Learn new skills Landing a new position brings many opportunities, of which learning new skills is the most exciting. Apart from flexing your existing skills, you will get a chance to join a different team and build new relationships. Secondments are much like on-the-job training but without the hassle of hierarchies. For example, a seconded employee can be from any position, department, or level. It empowers them to learn new skills and level up their expertise across newer areas. Build your professional network Entering into a new secondment position can mean getting to know more people. As you become a part of a new team, there is a great chance to build deeper connections and relationships with your colleagues. Interacting closely with another team also helps in getting access to greater opportunities besides having a positive impact on your career journey.  Tips for successful secondments Secondments offer excellent potential to widen your network, gain new skills, and develop a broader organizational perspective. To make the most of your secondment strategy, consider these tips: Understand the new role Find out everything about the new role and what it offers you in the short and long term. Speak to your manager to determine if you will be developing new skills or working on a certain project, and also learn about the estimated workload in the role. Create a written secondment contract Make sure to have a written secondment contract that includes all the key elements of the secondment role, duration, and responsibilities. A written agreement also helps if you are going to work with a third party in another region as it clarifies the legal laws of the state. Spend time in preparation Planning helps employees avoid sudden or surprising revelations. If possible, speak to your secondment manager to see if they’d like you to be prepared with anything in particular. For example, an email setup or IT permissions for the laptop are operational things that can be completed a day or two before your secondment joining date. Stay in the loop Whether connecting with your new colleagues or keeping in touch with older ones, use LinkedIn to stay in the loop.  Request to remain a part of the email bulletins or company newsletters so you know what’s happening in your role. That will also significantly reduce the catching up you may need to do when you get back. Request feedback Just doing the role doesn’t help you achieve your professional goals. You need to know if you’re doing well and moving in the right direction.  Make sure to interact with your new manager and request regular feedback to ensure you’re on the right track. Review and reflect Take some time to review your secondment experience to see how it went. Spend a couple of hours reviewing the things that went well and the ones that could have been better.  Finally, summarize the learnings, skills, and experience gained and add these to your resume or LinkedIn profile. Apply the learnings New things or practices learned do not stay with us unless we take the time to practice them regularly. Spend time applying the skills and expertise gained from the secondment experience. Consider sharing a few best practices with your original supervisor or suggest recommendations for areas that can be made better with improvement. Final notes A secondment can be the perfect piece of the puzzle for companies looking for critical staff or employees wanting to develop their careers and broaden their skillset. Starting a secondment means stepping out of your comfort zone, which can be exhilarating. A growth mindset will help you navigate the new terrains while developing a newfound appreciation for your older role when you return to it.  Learn more ways to develop your leadership skills here, or check out our online training resources.

New! Space Workflows: Automate Team, Cross-Functional, & Company-Wide Workflows with Wrike
Wrike Tips 7 min read

New! Space Workflows: Automate Team, Cross-Functional, & Company-Wide Workflows with Wrike

The Future of Work is hybrid, and many teams rely on seamless collaboration to get their best work done. The industry has taken notice, which you can see by the numbers: According to Forbes: 73% of respondents strongly prefer a holistic solution for cross-team collaboration. Deloitte Insights says that 83% of digital companies are leveraging cross-functional teams and empowering teams to take ownership of their process needs. Gartner’s “Market Guide for Collaborative Work Management” report says there is a growing demand for solutions to be flexible and scalable to specific business activities. This rising demand for better collaboration requires empowering teams to take ownership of how work is received, organized, and executed. Teams are looking for this level of autonomy to execute the work their way. Wrike gives teams this level of autonomy with Space Workflows, part our recent Wrike Lightspeed announcement.  Today we’re focusing on Space Workflows and their uniqueness to our platform. But first, a quick recap of what Spaces and workflows mean individually in Wrike. What are Spaces and workflows in Wrike? Spaces are a way to group work and the top level in Wrike’s folder hierarchy. Spaces enable organizations of all sizes to define and manage their departments at scale. They are centralized locations for all information relevant to your team, and every team can have its own Space to work autonomously. In addition, Spaces can act as hubs for the geo-location, organization unit, or special initiatives. Within a Space, there are two ways to interact — as an admin or a member. Team leaders, experts, or operations representatives commonly act as admins to manage the space and all items in it. Admins set up the work structure, processes, views, and tools relevant to their teams. Members can see a space on the home page, access it, and execute work within projects and other work items stored in the space. Workflows in Wrike define the different states a work item can be in over its lifecycle. Users can rely on default workflows, or create custom workflows to meet the team's needs.  Workflows standardize processes on a team, cross-functional or company-wide level, and let admins build robust processes when combined with Automation and other Wrike features.   What is Space Workflows? Space Workflows are one of the latest Space customization functionalities, empowering Space admins with the permission to set up their own processes, autonomous from broader organizational processes. This improved efficiency helps ensure that team workspaces are built and maintained appropriately by those familiar with specific teams' day-to-day workflows and activities.  The beauty of this new feature is multi-faceted: It eliminates the need to engage with an Account Admin every time there’s a minor process change. For instance, departmental operations teams, like Marketing Ops and DevOps, now have the power to run their team’s workflows at the Space level, while IT has control over processes established across the company using Wrike account settings.  Space Workflows are no-code, which empowers team managers to own their team’s work without requiring development skills or admin help. Wrike manages the views, dashboards, reports, and Analyze boards at the team level within the Space. Furthermore, Space Workflows help establish a more granular setup at different levels and reduce clutter, so there’s less chance of selecting the wrong workflow. How do Wrike Space Workflows set us apart from the competition? Traditional collaborative work management platforms force all teams to adhere to an overarching process or a singular rigid workflow. Wrike’s Space Workflows allow your teams to have more control over establishing a process workflow that matches your business and process needs. We provide more flexibility on which workflow is intended for each team's workspace, reducing confusion by separating organizational and departmental work processes.  So, what’s the key benefit? You can scale as a department or company by creating work spaces and processes configurable to each team’s unique needs. Space Workflows eliminate bottlenecks by not having to route process improvement needs directly through an Account Admin.  Key challenges and solutions that Space Workflows address Problem #1: Inefficiency in updating process changes Consider a situation where you have multiple Spaces in your account that require multiple workflows per Space. Anytime a workflow needs to be updated, only the Account Admin can make those updates, which slows down efficiency and creates bottlenecks. In addition, the Account Admin might not be familiar with a specific team’s workflow, which requires more back-and-forth conversations to ensure the correct adjustments are made. Solution: Space Admins can own their team’s workflows and independently manage all their building blocks, such as custom fields, request forms, reports, and dashboards. With this new feature, you can maximize Account Admin focus on account-wide solutions while fostering accountability and ownership to Space-level leads who are more familiar with their team's workflow process needs. Problem #2: Inaccurate tracking/reporting Too many workflow options to choose from increases the risk of team members selecting the wrong status from the wrong workflow, impacting how you report and filter project and task status. Solution: Demonstrate value by reporting on the correct status options and accurately assess where projects and tasks are across the team's intended workflow. The result? Consistent reporting across the board. Problem #3: Confusion about which workflow a team member should use It’s not uncommon to have multiple work streams requiring different workflows. But, you get inundated with the number of workflow options available to a project or task, which causes confusion about which status options and workflows to use. Solution: Wrike Space Workflows can keep workflows intentional to the Space level needs, ensuring team members select the right status options and effectively move work through the required workflow. How to get access to Space Workflows Better process management efficiency is possible, and good news for Wrike ‘Business,’ ‘Enterprise,’ and ‘Pinnacle’ customers — you have access to the new feature today!  Free users can upgrade their account via the subscription tab in the app or by contacting their Wrike success manager. ‘Team’ plan users have limited access to Space Workflows — one workflow — pre-configured to a use case template. When you upgrade, you will get full access to Space Workflows and experience more control with team processes, and you’ll unlock Custom Item Types, blueprints, and automated approvals too!

Welcome to the Platform of Choice for Marketers
Wrike Tips 10 min read

Welcome to the Platform of Choice for Marketers

From demand generation to creative asset production, Wrike is the work management platform that will help marketers succeed.

Why DAM Is The Next Best Addition to Your Wrike Workflow
Wrike Tips 5 min read

Why DAM Is The Next Best Addition to Your Wrike Workflow

Today’s consumers are demanding more than ever. Personalization, interactive content, and complex media types (think video and VR) are all top of mind from those who expect top-notch experiences from the companies they do business with. But what does this mean for your marketing and creative teams? There is now immense pressure to pump out high-quality, visual content at significantly faster rates.  When environmental factors and looming KPIs require your team to build strong campaigns at a faster rate, it becomes critical to lean into processes and technology that facilitate strong workflows. Even more critical: ensuring the digital assets (photos, animations, videos, etc.) that your teams need to create are always readily available within those workflows. So, how can your teams collaborate more effectively? By integrating your Wrike account with MediaValet’s cloud-based digital asset management (DAM) solution.  What is MediaValet? MediaValet is a digital asset management solution (DAM) that helps companies manage, organize, share, and distribute their digital assets from within one central library. It improves the productivity of marketing teams and increases the ROI of content and creative programs.From within the library, users can perform a variety of functions, including re-sizing & re-formatting their media, tracking usage history, and sharing large files easily with external parties. It provides organizations with increased media security, such as user permissions, compliance regulations, recovery, and geo-replication. Key features of a DAM include: Storing and managing brand and marketing material (photos, videos, etc.) Quickly finding and retrieving digital assets, using advanced searches Enriching assets with custom metadata, such as keywords Version control and history tracking for all media assets Manipulating assets into other forms, such as file type or size Access permissions for internal and external users How does the MediaValet and Wrike integration work? With the MediaValet and Wrike integration, teams can deliver campaigns faster, eliminating time-consuming admin tasks while protecting their brand’s identity. The two-way integration between the platforms allows users to seamlessly push and pull assets between Wrike and MediaValet and ensure everyone is using the most up-to-date assets with automatic version updates. The top three benefits of integrating Wrike and MediaValet include: Finding what you need, faster, Always working with the most up-to-date content, and Maintaining content security Let’s explore each benefit of using Wrike and MediaValet in more detail below. 1. Find the assets you need, faster The integration allows users to automatically push and pull Wrike project attachments directly into the DAM library without ever leaving the Wrike interface. Users can browse folder categories or use MediaValet’s additional search capabilities to instantly find the assets they need. In addition to finding content by filename, users can search for files by added keywords and AI-generated auto-tags (identifying people, objects, text, spoken work and subjects). When uploading final files back to MediaValet, users can add keywords, categories, and other searchable fields to enhance asset discoverability. Plus, all images and PDFs are automatically tagged using artificial intelligence (AI), eliminating manual entry. This minimizes redundant admin creative requests, giving time back to the creative team to work on their most important tasks and projects. 2. Always work with up-to-date content Integrating Wrike with MediaValet means never again accidentally using an old draft or outdated asset. Ensure brand consistency across campaigns and channels with automatic bi-directional versioning. This means users can publish new materials from either platform with the confidence that their team is only using the most up-to-date asset.  Bi-directional version control ensures that Wrike and all Wrike users are always using and accessing the latest approved version of each asset. When the new version of an asset is published in a Wrike task, it will replace the existing version of the asset in MediaValet; and vice versa, when a new version of an asset is uploaded into MediaValet, it's automatically pushed to all associated tasks in Wrike. This allows for seamless and collaborative workflow across all users and Wrike tasks. 3. Keep your content secure at all times By integrating your Wrike instance with your MediaValet library, you gain enhanced permission structures, which means you can control exactly what each person can use within the DAM. This ensures team members only have access to what is relevant to their workflows, and your asset library remains secure.  Enhanced user permissions also help to improve collaboration with geo-distributed teams. This keeps project details centralized and accessible by attaching assets to specific Wrike tasks. Users can upload final assets to MediaValet for use across projects and campaigns—from anywhere. Additionally, direct uploads from within Wrike allow users to publish final creative assets directly to MediaValet from Wrike, without needing to first download them to their own desktop and then upload them to MediaValet. Final approvers can rename assets and even update the assets’ metadata from within Wrike.   Seamlessly streamline your workflow and maximize project execution with MediaValet’s Wrike integration. Get in touch to learn more and book a demo with your Customer Success Manager today!

Lightspeed Feature Focus: Communicate and Connect Easily with Outside Organizations Using External Requester Collaboration
Wrike Tips 7 min read

Lightspeed Feature Focus: Communicate and Connect Easily with Outside Organizations Using External Requester Collaboration

The age of remote work has brought a number of realizations. We now know that with the right work management solution, we can work effectively from anywhere. We understand that great work doesn’t have to be done in the hours between 9 to 5. Above all, we appreciate the value of digital collaboration more than ever.  The challenge of modern collaboration At one time, busy offices and hectic workplaces might have disguised poor communication and siloed teams, but now the cost of ineffective collaboration is clear. Wrike’s ground-breaking Dark Matter of Work research proved this: Nearly 80% of knowledge workers surveyed said they work at cross-purposes with colleagues because they have been given tasks that contradict one another, understand instructions differently, or don’t have access to the right information. This type of ‘dark matter’ or invisible work costs businesses up to $60M annually. As Forbes recently pointed out, effective collaboration across teams, offices, and regions is often the difference between success and failure for a business. This will only become more acute in an unpredictable economic environment, with additional pressure, scarce resources, and increasing employee burnout. In fact, the estimated $60M annual cost of invisible work is expected to increase by 53% in the next five years. The solution is Wrike Lightspeed  As the world’s most powerful work management platform, Wrike has been a pioneer in digital collaboration since 2006. It has constantly iterated to improve users’ interactions with each other, introducing ever-more impressive collaboration features. In October 2022, Wrike launched Wrike Lightspeed, its most exciting innovation yet. With a universal work management process that covers the A-Z of modern work, Wrike Lightspeed has all the features any team, department, or organization could need. It’s more customizable, scalable, and easy to use than any other solution, offering a fast, easy onboarding experience for new users, as well as complex, configurable features for fast-growing companies. With more than 400 integrations with popular tools like Google, Slack, Salesforce, and Adobe Creative Cloud, Wrike Lightspeed is the all-in-one work management platform you’ve been looking for. The perfect combination of speed, technical proficiency, and style, Wrike Lightspeed delivers an exceptional new user experience. Our designers have breathed new life into the interface with fresh-looking Table, Board, and Calendar views and a fully revamped Analytics dashboard that makes seeing work progress fun and informative. Our intuitive navigation makes it easy to get to the features you need, including our best-in-class Gantt charts, Kanban boards, and library of ready-to-go templates. It’s packed with collaboration tools for remote teams, as well as those based in offices all around the world. Every Wrike Lightspeed feature and integration is designed with the customer in mind. It strips away work complexity, surfaces essential tasks, and facilitates unparalleled digital collaboration.  Wrike Lightspeed powers: 50% faster project delivery: By providing a single source of truth, Wrike offers complete visibility into any project journey, including any potential roadblocks, resourcing issues, and workload imbalances. Teams can see project progression at a glance in multiple views. This means fewer delays, fewer budget overruns, and much, much faster delivery. 70% fewer meetings: Is your weekly calendar filled with time-consuming meetings? Well, with Wrike, every meeting, email, and message can be converted into instant communication in one shared space. Update tasks in real time, tag colleagues across functions, and spend your time on the work that really matters.  90% less email: Email is a great tool and a fantastic way to talk to external stakeholders. But as the threads grow, so too does the time spent writing, responding, and searching for details you need. All this ‘dark matter of work’ has a real cost, estimated to amount to  $93m a year by 2027. This is where Wrike can help, offering one secure place for all your conversations, which means far fewer emails and much more alignment.  Lightspeed offers the fastest way to productivity by helping teams, departments, and whole companies Work as One™. It’s also the only remote collaboration software that doesn’t require customers to make tradeoffs — you can interact, communicate, and collaborate seamlessly with internal colleagues and external partners alike.  Introducing External Requester Collaboration Advancing digital collaboration has been Wrike's primary goal for more than 16 years. We’ve always acknowledged the need to collaborate with other teams outside the work environment and keep all work-related data together. We’ve also long understood that this means more than being able to message a colleague or work on a document together, which is why we introduced reviews and approvals for guest users. This proved a game-changer for service teams of all types, who were able to bring every external stakeholder into the Wrike fold. Since then, we’ve continued to develop our collaboration capabilities, helping keep people connected in the most effective way.  With the launch of Wrike Lightspeed comes our most innovative feature yet — the new External Requester Collaboration. Now, Wrike and non-Wrike users can communicate, collaborate, and create — all in one place.  That means toggling between Wrike and third-party email accounts becomes a thing of the past, as the entire request journey can be managed within Wrike. Communication can be displayed as ‘internal comments’ and ‘email to requester’ so the different paths are clear to all users.  All of this will be great news for our customers, especially service providers who interact with external clients as well as internal stakeholders. This new feature empowers those teams to deliver effective service management, allowing them to continue to do their best work in Wrike’s platform while also communicating smoothly outside of it.  For example, many IT service teams field multiple requests from people outside of their company, including many who aren’t in Wrike. Those requesters will often need to provide more information, such as a screenshot, photograph, or attachment. Similarly, the provider will usually respond seeking extra information or providing a status update. All of these daily back-and-forths can now occur and be tracked in Wrike, offering a seamless experience for both parties and a single source of truth for future reference.  This exceptional collaboration feature will also allow advertising agencies and marketing teams to maintain end-to-end digital collaboration on asset creation, proofing, and publication with temporary freelancers, partner agencies, creative contributors, and many more. No need to download assets into client-friendly PDFs or email approvers separately — now you can just invite them into Wrike, where the task, assets, campaigns, and discussions are happening. Permissions can be adjusted to give them visibility where needed while sensitive information is safeguarded.  How External Requester Collaboration works Available for all Wrike customers on Team and higher Wrike plans, External Requester  Collaboration is a native email integration feature that allows Wrike users to communicate with people outside of Wrike. You can do this by receiving and sending emails directly from Wrike tasks to external email addresses. This way, you can collaborate on tasks with external colleagues and partners without adding them to your Wrike account and avoid switching to email to provide updates or request approvals.  It also means that all of your questions, responses, comments, and assets are stored securely within the task, so it’s easy to refer to them in the future when following up on a query or planning a similar project. This promotes a more structured work intake, reducing back-and-forth email communication, fostering much faster response times and preventing you from toggling between tools. To start using this great collaboration feature, you just have to follow three simple steps: Set your external request forms to allow email communication Create a task from this request form Click ‘internal comment’ or ‘email to requester’ You will now be able to communicate with external request collaborators via email and vice versa.  Making collaboration truly possible  Wrike Lightspeed is revolutionizing collaboration. It’s a big-picture platform that connects teams, departments, and companies — as well as every type of colleague, client, and customer outside of the organization. By opening up digital collaboration to include external stakeholders, Wrike Lightspeed will put you far ahead of the competition. While they’re still waiting on clients to download a PDF, your client could be commenting on the asset directly in the task.   This remarkable configurability, usability, and scalability can be applied across a customer's entire work management process, enabling teams to work together as one. This is what makes Wrike Lightspeed the most powerful solution on the market for every team, every business — and every external user, too.  Ready to send your team on the path to smooth collaboration and unparalleled productivity? Start a free trial of Wrike today.

Lightspeed Feature Focus: Work Your Way With Custom Item Types
Wrike Tips 10 min read

Lightspeed Feature Focus: Work Your Way With Custom Item Types

It’s no secret that the pace of work has increased exponentially in recent years. In less than half a century, we’ve moved from typewriters, to word processors, all the way to laptops packed with software to help us deliver ever more work in the fastest way possible. In fact, knowledge workers now use up to 14 applications in their roles, toggling through more than a dozen work management tools every day. This heavy workload, coupled with resource scarcity, unexpected pivots, and employee burnout is contributing to a major loss of productivity — in the second quarter of this year, U.S. worker productivity plunged again, leading to the largest year-on-year decline on record. Businesses need to address these issues fast in an increasingly pressured and unpredictable market. They urgently need work management software that focuses on maximizing output, minimizing expenses and allocating resources efficiently.  What they need is Wrike Lightspeed. Introducing Wrike Lightspeed  Launched in October 2022, Wrike Lightspeed is the latest innovation of the world’s most powerful work management platform. Combining speed, style, and substance, it’s got everything an organization could need to manage diverse types of work. It’s more intuitive, easy-to-use, customizable, and scalable than any other solution, growing in tandem with your team as you soar to new heights of success.  It strips away work complexity, surfacing essential work, and illuminating a path towards productivity. With more than 400 integrations with popular collaborative tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams, and Salesforce, Wrike Lightspeed is the all-in-one solution that can replace those towering tech stacks, break down silos, and help you take back your team’s time.  It’s also a lot of fun to use, with an attractive and modern UX design that will make working with Wrike every day a joy. Our designers created new Table and Calendar views, and a fresh look for our Analytics dashboard, so users can watch as they hit goal after goal. It’s easy for new and advanced customers alike to navigate through the wide range of dynamic work management software features like Gantt charts, Kanban boards, and customizable calendars. Every tool, feature, and integration is built to help companies maximize team performance, accelerate growth, and deliver real impact, including: 50% faster project delivery 70% fewer meetings 90% less email 100% real-time visibility  Savings of up to $60m* *The estimated annual cost annually of wasted time, canceled projects, duplicated efforts, and employee churn. This can rise as high as $1.65B for organizations with over 100,000 employees. Revolutionary in its approach and unrivaled in its capabilities, Lightspeed offers the fastest route to productivity — by helping teams, departments, and whole organizations to Work As One™. It still features the exceptional versatility Wrike’s work management platform is renowned for, with extra layers of customization so users can tailor individual work that matches team needs. It’s the only platform that doesn’t require customers to make tradeoffs,it has it all, wall to wall, intuitive interface, customizability you need in today’s dynamic work environment and the ability to scale indefinitely as you need it. That means that you don’t have to adjust to work in Wrike. It adjusts to work for you.  Managing multiple ways of working More than 2.4m people around the world use Wrike every day. They’re based in hundreds of countries, speaking multiple languages, and operating in a wide variety of industries, professions, and fields. That means that they need a powerful work management platform that reflects their unique requirements.  Most out-of-the-box work management software solutions force teams to work within a rigid workflow template. That means squeezing their round work pegs into the provider’s square holes, using whatever templates, layouts, and business processes are included. Take a simple work request form, for example. That might look like a technical support ticket for an IT provider, a creative brief for a marketing department, or a repair order for a facilities team. Each request will need different fields, ranging from software error details, to creative asset requirements, all the way to photographs of a broken window that needs to be fixed. The organization could include dependencies to funnel the request to the right team, and use acronyms or shorthand to denote different types of queries. Modern work is complex enough: busy teams need to receive, organize, and expedite their tasks in a way that works for them as fast and as easily as possible. Without it, they risk losing valuable hours, jeopardizing on-time delivery, and compromising the uniformity, quality, and efficiency of their work. Here at Wrike, we’re aware of this problem — we’ve seen it happen, time and time again in our 16 years of pioneering modern work management software. So we built the solution, with unrivaled versatility and next-level customization capabilities — empowering you to work your way in Wrike.  Unveiling Custom Item Types With the launch of Wrike Lightspeed comes Custom Item Types — the ultimate in configurability. Teams can now adapt their workspaces for their own specific use cases, business processes, terminologies, and behaviors.  They can add their own item types in addition to native task and project types. They can even configure the layout of each item's processes to work with their own business logic, designing a specific set of fields to reflect their unique needs and requirements. It’s like having custom project management software, without the expense of bespoke software engineering. How would that look in a modern workplace? Well, marketing teams can now work with campaigns, assets, and creative briefs; Agile teams can create user stories, epics, and releases; and IT departments can raise tickets, issue first fixes, and phase rollouts. You can rename all the item types to fit neatly with your organization’s culture, linguistic style, and shorthand — like how HR and talent acquisition teams deal with job descriptions, candidate profiles, C.V.s, interviews, feedback, and postings in multiple locations. Wrike speaks your team’s language.  Wrike’s work management platform is the most cutting-edge solution available, deploying advanced AI to make all our users’ lives easier. With the release of Wrike Lightspeed and Custom Item Types, we’ve taken Automations — one of our most valuable productivity-boosting features — to the next level. Nobody knows your business like you, so that’s why we made it easy for you to design your own workflow. Power users and admins can now automate some of their most routine work, utilizing easy-to-use, no-code workflows that streamline every item type into a natural business logic that’s designed by your team to meet your needs.  Custom Item Types support team-specific processes and automations that are unique and relevant for your use case. Item types also speed up team operations and cross-functional collaboration with the flexibility and customizability needed to automate best practices directly into a daily-use system. By creating Custom Item Types in response to requirements, you can build your very own library of no-code automated work items, define workflows and item relations that adjust fast when needed. Custom Item Types now work seamlessly with request forms and co-exist alongside Blueprints, helping teams of all sizes to get the answers they need fast and expediting their work. They also connect with Wrike’s powerful analytics, so that key results can be viewed in formats that best reflect the requirements of your  team or organization. Share this valuable data in seconds, by generating pre-built or customized reports, complete with helpful infographics and visual insights. Custom Item Type features Available for all Wrike Customers on Wrike’s Business and higher plans, Custom Item Types are packed with powerful features that will drive productivity in your organization. With Wrike Lightspeed’s groundbreaking work management software, you can now:  Create your own library of easy-access item types that can be defined and adapted to mirror business processes of your team, department, or company Access out-of-the-box types that come with ready-made use-case templates  Facilitate work filtering in dashboards, reports, and other tools using item icon and type identification in item views, as well as visible titles in Table, Gantt, and Board views Enable power users and admins alike to tailor Wrike for team members’ needs using a Custom Type Editor — without advanced skills or coding knowledge  Make it unique with team-specific item types that help define and highlight each team member’s role You can also use Custom Item Types to: Support consistent company processes with account-wide item types Enable or disable item types in an instant when your requirements and team needs change. That means no confusion between old and new across your organization  Configure item views so that different sections and fields can be hidden from users, added in-flight, or adjusted during different phases Customize context creation menus incorporating multiple views and adaptable hierarchies Enable item-specific workflows and automations rules that execute for your specific type of work Define parent-child relations between item types to build logical hierarchies of work — for example, you may wish to create an event that consists of deck, copy and venue subitems and not the other way around Putting you in control of your work — and your future  Wrike Lightspeed helps to put you back in the driver’s seat and take your team to new heights of productivity through one powerful work management platform. It offers the best of both worlds: teams can customize almost everything in their own space, while the platform unifies and centralizes the work and reporting. That extraordinary configurability, scalability, and ease of use is game-changing in our unpredictable economic environment.  Wrike’s Custom Item Types in particular help to pare back the complexity of modern work, enabling every team to build their ideal work environment, navigating through familiar terms, and accessing the right work in seconds. This means less time searching, adapting, or using third-party tools — and more time delivering great work.  Ready to transform your team with Custom Item Types? Start a free trial of Wrike today.

How Workflow Automation Software  Frees Up More of Your Time
Wrike Tips 7 min read

How Workflow Automation Software Frees Up More of Your Time

In part one of our “selecting the best CWM solution” series, we discussed that having a centralized project intake method and managing all your team’s work using a system of record are essential to working efficiently. Without these in place, you’re likely struggling to keep track of work, managing projects in multiple programs, and chasing down stakeholders to get project details. Part two highlighted the pain of slow asset approvals and siloed teams trying to collaborate. Today, we’ll focus on the advantages of workflow automation and working intelligently. Pain: You can’t automate repetitive tasks Most projects and tasks go through predictable stages before completion and always with some repetitive work. Assigning tasks to the correct teammate, advancing work to the next stage, and completing and archiving work. Administrative work translates to lost time on productive activities like interviewing customers for case studies or writing a new product announcement blog article. Why not use workflow automation software to auto-assign and notify the correct person when work is ready for their sign-off? There’s a finite time in the work day, and teams shouldn’t waste a second doing admin work that can be left to automation. Pain: The rate you scale is too slow  Business growth can often be a blessing and a curse. Blessing because revenues increase and teams grow but a curse because as organizations scale, projects and workloads increase, which could introduce resource availability constraints. As work demands escalate, teams don’t have time to dig through piles of data for decision-making insights. As a result, collaboration gets tougher and boundaries between work and personal time become blurred. With increased workloads, it becomes challenging for project owners and managers to manually track and analyze the progress of high-level initiatives and granular tasks. Assessing risk becomes equally challenging and determining risk levels based on intuition and experience is less effective and nearly impossible at scale.  Project owners and managers need an efficient way to identify at-risk initiatives at a glance and prioritize them without manually checking in with team members and digging through multiple project levels. Once a potential risk is identified, they need insight to accurately diagnose the cause and determine next steps, whether it’s notifying stakeholders, alleviating bottlenecks, adjusting resources, or updating timelines. Machine learning and AI continue to seep into our everyday activities and routines. Smart devices act as personal assistants to help manage calendars and set reminders. Help center bots are more prevalent to provide great customer service. Our most used applications provide auto-generated responses, such as Gmail, LinkedIn, and many phone messaging apps. All this technology is available at our fingertips to be more efficient, collaborate, and do more. Why should work be any different? Workflow automation tools free up teams to do their best work. As workload and collaboration ramp up, team members may sometimes get buried with notifications in need of timely responses. This is noteworthy because most work-related communications and responses are short and require simple decisions, but it takes too much time and manual effort. Plus, there’s pressure to respond quickly while juggling more responsibilities. Yet with notifications piling up, it can be overwhelming to respond without a quick way to answer. You need a workflow automation software solution that empowers you to act quickly and move work forward without much manual effort. Even in the digital transformation age, not all work is digital. Ever get a printed document or handwritten note from a colleague that the rest of your team should see? Even if you could digitize the file and upload it, the editing process would be painful. Physical document sharing, editing, and collaboration is unrealistic across distributed organizations and teams because members don’t have access to traditional office technology to digitize print assets. Common problems meet Wrike solutions Wrike Integrate, our workflow/process automation software add-on for all complex and multi-app workflows, has teamed up with our new Automation Engine to automate repeatable processes within Wrike. The Automation Engine can automate your most-used workflows to reduce operational busywork. Based on if/then logic, account administrators can build automation rules using triggers and actions to create custom reminders and notifications, move and organize work, update work status and assignments, initiate approval workflows, and take action based on project risk levels. No coding experience is necessary to create the automation rules.  There are many advantages of workflow automation. By removing repetitive tasks from a team’s workload, you can reduce errors, streamline processes, and save each team member hundreds of hours per year — another way of improving productivity. Project Risk Prediction Wrike’s built-in Work Intelligence™ features Project Risk Prediction, where we use machine-learning technology to predict potential project delays and alert project and team leaders of the possible causes. This allows them to take action fast to reduce or avoid delays. Our workflow automation software uses signals like start and end dates, tasks extending beyond project deadlines, and prior outcomes from similar projects to assess medium and high risks, and sends email digests to alert users. The predictions can be used as inputs to the Automation Engine to trigger actions that automate the activation of different scenarios based on project risk. Smart Replies To address the need for quick, short responses, Wrike’s Smart Replies allow users to take quick actions to move work forward by responding to notifications and activity with automated replies generated with machine learning. Each reply is based on the context of the conversation and allows users to select from up to three responses for each @mention received in their Wrike Inbox. Document Processing Teammates don’t have to fumble with physical documents anymore when they want to share with the group. Wrike’s new Document Processing functionality, an optical character recognition (OCR) technology, digitizes and converts printed documents and handwritten notes into editable text files. Just use your mobile device camera as a scanner, save the file as a task attachment, and upload to Wrike. House of Design automates their workflow Ryan Okelberry, COO/Principal at House of Design details how Wrike’s automation speeds up his team’s workflow to deliver results: “... [Wrike] has been simple enough to allow us to write recipes fairly quickly and easily without having a lot of programming experience. It is often the little things that we can write recipes and automation for that really enhance the Wrike platform.” Work smarter with automation Automate your workflows, identify at-risk work, respond quicker, and collaborate on physical documents. It’s all possible with Wrike’s Automation Engine and cutting-edge Work Intelligence™. Let Wrike show you how by starting a free trial today. While you’re at it, download our new eBook, Empowering Teams With CWM: 13 Common Pain Points and How to Solve Them to learn the four key areas to consider when evaluating a CWM solution, including the top 16 features for hypergrowth and enterprise teams.

Building Business Resilience: Wrike Customers Have Power At Their Fingertips
Project Management 10 min read

Building Business Resilience: Wrike Customers Have Power At Their Fingertips

Business resilience is key in this period of uncertainty. Learn how to use Wrike software to build a business resilience framework to protect your organization.

New Wrike Template and Capabilities Enable Service Management Teams to Work As One
Wrike Tips 3 min read

New Wrike Template and Capabilities Enable Service Management Teams to Work As One

Every organization deals with enterprise service management uniquely, but the problems encountered are usually quite similar. On a day-to-day basis, service teams – from HR to IT to finance – are often:  Manually juggling repetitive tasks  Unable to streamline and organize multiple requests  Struggling to manage ongoing change and optimization Sound familiar? Fortunately, you're not alone or without help — Wrike’s latest Service Management template is designed to enable companies to quickly and cost-effectively establish any service team on a secure, robust, and scalable platform. And by allowing service teams to work as one with other departments in a single source of truth, companies see huge productivity gains through simplified workflows and increased visibility without the need to spend on specialized technologies that are complex, expensive, and difficult to ramp up. This is especially important for SMBs, which face challenges with security, budget, and cross-functional work. As their business scales, they will need a solution that can grow with them rather than taking on the time-consuming task of seeking out multiple other solutions to meet new demands. We’re bringing all work onto one platform. Great service management starts here  Wrike’s latest template introduces consolidated request management processes that reduce manual and mundane work via automation, streamlined requests, and knowledge base management. It's the simplest and most effective way to establish the single source of truth your service management teams need to achieve great productivity and exceptional work management.  Powerful, versatile, no-code tools like those provided by our IT service management template put everyday workers and citizen developers in control of their workflows so that they can spend less time on busywork and more on the projects that matter.  Consolidate request and service management  Streamline work and consolidate request and service management processes with request forms that are easily customizable and configurable to fit your organization’s unique workflow and needs.  Unlock advanced project visibility  Comprehensive, accessible dashboards provide a bird's-eye view of all the work your service management teams are involved in. Effortlessly monitor task progress, status updates, incidents, new service requests, and more. Also, view and categorize service tickets based on custom item types — such as description, location, or a specific team. Empower teams to succeed  Don't leave your organization in the dark — this service management plan template provides service teams with the tools to enable self-service and build a cross-departmental knowledge base. Workers can easily access information through organized knowledge articles, reducing the overall number of help tickets and queries. Articles can also easily be built and tracked through defined workflows and tools within the template.  Service management excellence  Service teams represent the backbone of workplace operations — it’s essential that they have everything they need to effectively deliver their services and break down silos and barriers between teams. Wrike continues to meet growing service needs and empowers both technical and non-technical teams alike to do better work.  Another recent example is Wrike's new email communication functionality with non-Wrike users. This feature moves communications with non-Wrike users, like external email exchanges, directly into Wrike. It reduces overall SaaS sprawl and removes barriers to visibility and better workflow, adding even more power and utility to the Service Management Template.  Check out for yourself today how much easier it is to streamline, consolidate, and optimize your IT service management workflows. Wrike users on the Business, Enterprise, and Pinnacle plans can get started with the Service Management Template here. 

Collaborative Work Management Stands for Productivity
Wrike Tips 7 min read

Collaborative Work Management Stands for Productivity

When it comes to managing work, there are a lot of different solutions out there. You may have heard acronyms like Collaborative Work Management (CWM), Adaptive Project Management and Reporting (APMR), and Portfolio and Project Management (PPM) thrown around, but what do they all really mean? And how do you choose the right one that fits the needs of your team in a digital work environment?  You need a solution that is intuitive, powerful, and can easily flex to meet the varying needs of your organization, and we’ll explain why a CWM solution can do just that. First up, what is CWM? Collaborative Work Management is a market term that represents a category of work platforms where teams, departments, and even entire businesses can manage their work in one place. If you’ve ever felt frustrated or disappointed after managing a complex project (or multiple projects) using a mix of spreadsheets, email, Slack, and other apps, you’re not alone. 70% of knowledge workers feel stressed having to juggle multiple apps and systems every day, according to our Dark Matter of Work research.  Most common tools are only designed for very limited use, or simple data analysis and basic work plans, and don’t meet the needs of today’s workers. Much of our daily work is complex, involving processes, people, technology, timelines, and budgets that require alignment to strategic initiatives, reporting to executives, and constant cross-functional collaboration. When you consider the complexity of all of this — a reality that is costing organizations 60M dollars each year — choosing a CWM platform to manage all of your work is a no-brainer.  CWM solutions have been used by companies of all sizes since the 2000s, but they really took off in the 2010s. They are affordable (even for very large deployments), can evolve and update quickly to meet customer needs, and they represent significant cost savings for organizations that want to maximize productivity and run more efficiently. The best CWM tools can connect work in a myriad of ways across people and initiatives; they have smart features like AI to automate workflow processes, as well as robust mobile apps designed to keep work moving when you’re away from your desk. Understanding the categories: CWM vs. PPM CWM sits in the sweet spot of workplace productivity between ad-hoc collaboration tools and more niche offerings like PPM. It can be thought of as the connective tissue that streamlines work happening in disparate tools like your Microsoft Office or Google suite and email and messaging apps, and it provides a single source of truth for internal and external teams to create, plan, manage, collaborate, and report on work and processes.  Portfolio and Project Management, on the other hand, represents a category of work platforms that are function-specific, and intended for planners to align programs and projects into portfolios. PPMs are designed primarily for project management offices (PMOs) with dedicated portfolio, program, or project managers, and they are much more cost-prohibitive.  If you’re familiar with PPM, it means you're serious about organizing and reporting on your work, but it also means that you recognize one major deficiency of these technologies: very few people actually use them, and even fewer can use them for their actual work. This is due to limitations such as: Outdated UI (versus work platforms designed to balance planning and delivery) Complex feature sets that most of us will never use Rigid structures and hierarchies that don’t represent the workflows we use daily The need for both technical integrations (some PPMs even require integrations from their product into their own product) and long deployments with ongoing oversight CWM has actually subsumed a significant portion of PPM capabilities over the years in order to provide a universal solution to host all work at a lower cost. Understanding the categories: CWM vs APMR In another niche corner, you will find Adaptive Project Management & Reporting (APMR) — a market term for a category of technology that represents how project managers, citizen developers, and individual contributors can execute detailed project plans more seamlessly than by using point technology, like a spreadsheet, or traditional portfolio and project management technology. APMR is a subcategory of CWM technology and represents the evolution away from planning-centric technologies.  If you’re a project manager or lead an outcomes-focused PMO, you’ll recognize that you sit in the middle of an imperfect Venn diagram between planning and execution. On one hand, you need the work to get done (ideally on time or even ahead of schedule) and on the other hand, you need to report progress to your executives to show how that work is helping the company achieve its goals and objectives.  Companies often try to manage project timelines and progress reporting with APMR, but when you take a closer look at what makes a good work management technology, you probably need to consider collaborative work management tools instead. CWM software works for every team and every business because it’s quick to get started, speaks the language of different departments, is easy to use, scales work – no matter how complex – and brings teams together across entire organizations, all in one place. Bottom line: it’s the only work management solution your team will ever need.  Why is a CWM, and Wrike specifically, the most powerful choice? Regardless of the new names and claims out there, we have been in the game for more than 15 years and understand that more technology isn't always better. Today's modern workers need a single platform — not disparate applications — that allows them to manage a multitude of workflows to streamline all work, while also having visibility into what‘s happening across the organization.  This need to “work as one” is further magnified as companies are forced to take a closer look at the bottom line in this uncertain economic climate. We can confidently say that Wrike has the tools to get the job done.  Wrike’s platform includes some of the most commonly-requested capabilities from our customers, and the tradeoffs customers have made with other solutions – in our category and in others – prior to selecting Wrike as the best CWM platform for their business. With Wrike, there are no tradeoffs.  Top features the Global 500 demand today Custom Item Types to go beyond standard tasks and projects and enable users to create their own work item types tailored to their team’s specific culture and style; Wrike is able to define different types of work to support any team’s workflows and keep cross-functional work connected within a single source of truth Detailed project and work demand intake using dynamic request forms Basic demand prioritization and selection using either financial terms or strategic inputs Resource capacity planning and modeling across different project teams Detailed project and work planning and management Resource assignment and allocation to ensure work is assigned appropriately Task management with multiple view types like table, Kanban, calendar, and lists, that includes time-tracking and status reporting Project and work risk management Project and work change management Features, including commenting, live editors, and built-in approvals, that allow for real-time collaboration Analytics that support decision-making and help form business strategy across multiple dimensions, not just at the highest portfolio level Rich analytics, either natively within the platform or exported directly into your business intelligence and analytics stack to help guide progress on goals and objectives Artificial intelligence (AI) that supports work creation, allocation, and risk Mobile access and support across all major mobile platforms Advanced integration strategy including integrations to popular applications like Microsoft, Google, Zoom, and Slack; workflow specific integrations like Hubspot, Salesforce, and Quickbooks; data syncs between technologies like Wrike and Jira, an integration platform that connects and automates technologies across an enterprise or even an advanced API for teams that really need that configurability What to do next? We understand how important it is to have the right tools to mitigate both the financial and human costs of work complexities. If any of the above features resonate with you, it’s time to consider implementing collaborative work management.  If you want to learn more, I encourage you to take a tour of Wrike or hear it straight from our customers at Wrike Collaborate, our free work management conference. If you want to get started right away, begin a free trial now! Authored by John Notman, Senior Director, Product Marketing at Wrike

Unravel Complex Collaboration by Working Your Way With Wrike's Custom Item Types
News 7 min read

Unravel Complex Collaboration by Working Your Way With Wrike's Custom Item Types

Wrike’s Custom Item Types allow teams to speak their own language and configure their processes to suit their needs. Learn how here.

Don’t Wait: Integrate Wrike Into Your Google Calendar
Wrike Tips 3 min read

Don’t Wait: Integrate Wrike Into Your Google Calendar

So, you do everything out of Wrike. It’s your work hub, your task management system of choice, and a robust tool for reporting to team leads and managers. Why not optimize the tools you have by integrating Wrike into your Google suite of services. You can start with one of the most important tools for organizing your day: Google Calendar.   By integrating Wrike into your Google Calendar, you’ll increase work output by limiting the need to constantly switch between tools you use every day. Here’s why this should matter to you — and how you can do it.  Context switching is a productivity killer Context switching is what happens when you quickly go from one task — or tool — to another. You may not realize how often it’s done or the impact it can have on your productivity.  However, it means you’re taking longer to do routine tasks, let alone any kind of deep work. Some people forget to check Wrike No matter what industry you’re in, there’s at least one person you’re collaborating with regularly who spends a lot more time in Google Calendar and other apps than they do in Wrike.  It’s important to be aware of your organization’s biggest milestones, project task due dates, and incoming tasks. Because most people are checking their Google Calendar at least once a day, you can easily turn your most important work into events in your calendar so that everyone in the company can follow along. Manage events like tasks Do you religiously manage your tasks in Wrike every day? When you integrate Google Calendar into Wrike, you can optimize the ability to stay on top of your projects. You can do all your planning for the day without leaving Wrike by turning your meetings into Wrike tasks. Additional functionality includes asking questions about meetings, requesting changes, and more, all from Wrike. By connecting Wrike into Google Calendar using Project Syncs, you can accomplish more in Wrike, collaborate more efficiently with people across the organization, and never have to switch tools again. Integrating Google Calendar with Wrike using Project Syncs is quick and easy The Project Syncs add-on for Wrike is a no-code workflow management solution that lets you connect with Google Calendar.  It empowers the user to sync Wrike tasks seamlessly with your calendar. If you’re using a Business Plus, Enterprise Standard, or Enterprise Pinnacle plan, you can get access to this add-on! As long as you’re an account owner, enabling Project Syncs is as simple as going to the Subscription panel of your Wrike settings and enabling the Project Syncs trial. From there, you just need to click Create flow to start linking your Wrike projects with Google Calendar and get more out of both tools. Here’s more information on doing that. If you have any questions, or having issues connecting with your calendar, feel free to reach out to us. 

Ask the Industry Expert: How to Project Manage the Six “Severance” Personalities on Your Team
Wrike Tips 7 min read

Ask the Industry Expert: How to Project Manage the Six “Severance” Personalities on Your Team

If you’ve watched the latest Apple TV® hit Severance, then you’ll know what I’m talking about. If not, you’ve at least heard the hype – it’s that dystopian/sci-fi series where some people elect to have a brain implant to essentially “sever” the link between their work and personal life consciousness so that their work selves don’t remember their personal selves, and vice versa. Given the myriad types of personalities that project managers need to work with, I found that the six main characters in this series fit really well with some typical archetypes that PMs find themselves working with. So, let’s get into these personalities, and how they map to some familiar stakeholders you may need to communicate with (a note for superfans: this covers only these characters’ innies, not outies): 1.    The “Mark” a. Meta tags for this personality type: Mark is pretty much your ideal boss – trusting, caring, and only a smidge of a tendency to be a rule-breaker, as long as nobody gets hurt. b.    Preferred communication style: Model their model-like professional behavior and you will be fine. c.     Hot buttons: They think a lot about their concerns about you — whether you’re unhappy or have an issue of any kind. They are all about taking care of others and dealing with constant disruptions by trying to keep things at an even keel. d.    Sweet spot for communication: Mark loves for you to simply meet simple expectations. Anything else may throw them off and cause confusion. e.    A project template they would love: This personality would love our Change Request template to help them see how to manage the constant disruption and volatility that a workplace can experience. This will speak to their sensibility, and maybe even garner you a special look with kind eyes. 2. The “Harmony” a.    Meta tags for this personality type: Harmony is a micromanager and uber-company ambassador. This type can be a boss, a boss’s boss, or another higher-up stakeholder. b.    Preferred communication style: Check in and communicate as much as possible – but be short and sweet about it. c.     Hot buttons: Forgetting to cc them or inviting them to meetings really pushes "Harmony's" buttons. Not including them in key conversations will make them feel out of control and out of the loop, which are big fears for them. d.    Sweet spot for communication: The more this personality sees their name everywhere in your documentation and meeting invites, the better. e.    A project template they would love: This personality would love the OKR Template to give them detailed visibility into how all projects tie back to the higher-level strategies that they are responsible for. This will keep their wolfish behavior at bay, and maybe even get you an optional handshake. 3. The “Helly” a.    Meta tags for this personality type: Helly is a rebel with an unknown cause, with uncertainty issues. They could be any team member at any level. b.    Preferred communication style: Offer Helly guideposts to help them manage their ups and downs, but otherwise, don’t bother them too much. c.     Hot buttons: Hovering, putting too many demands on them, and not giving them enough structure or guidance are all touchy areas for Helly. d.    Sweet spot for communication: Having a good listener and someone that can guide them through their experiences is crucial for Helly. e.    A project template they would love: The Roadmap Template would help this personality see where their tasks are leading, how they are interconnected, and the progress of what their work leads to. This will help a person of this type feel more secure, and maybe even get you invited to a team dance party. 4. The “Dylan” a.    Meta tags for this personality type: Dylan is a bit of an egomaniac, snark-master, and also comic relief. They usually fall into the peer-type of resource category, but this can vary. b.    Preferred communication style: Trade some good barbs; make Dylan feel good about the work they are doing. c.     Hot buttons: Taking work too seriously, or not including them in conversations or tasks can annoy Dylan. d.    Sweet spot for communication: Having some lighthearted conversation and looping them in to help solve problems helps Dylan feel comfortable at work. e.    A project template they would love: This personality type would love the Retrospective Template to show them shout-outs for themselves and other team members, and help them feel good about the work they are doing. This will help a person of this type feel more motivated, and maybe even inspire them to get a glass sculpture made with an image of your team. 5. The “Milchick” a.    Meta tags for this personality type: Milchick is a watchdog – they can be a mid-level manager, team manager, functional manager, or another supervisory role with a team of direct reports. b.    Preferred communication style: Be available and responsive at all times, or Milchick will come looking for you. c.     Hot buttons: Not being in your seat (or at-the-ready on Slack) during your working hours, or really any appearance of rule-breaking is a red flag for Milchick. d.    Sweet spot for communication: The more they see you in person or online doing what you are supposed to be doing, the more Milchick will like what you do. e.    A project template they would love: This personality type is all about the Kanban board – to see quickly and easily what everyone is working on and their real-time progress. This will make this type so happy, that maybe you’ll even throw you a waffle party. 6. The “Irving” a.     Meta tags for this personality type: Irving is a by-the-book, process-hound, regular drinker from the Kool-Aid fountain. They could be a teammate or someone who has been at your company long-term. b.    Preferred communication style: Irving likes to be looped in and directed using language from the company handbook. c.     Hot buttons: Stepping out of protocol is a no-no for Irving unless you are taking a trip to their favorite department. d.    Sweet spot for communication: Using the company lingo as much as possible to get your points across will put you right on Iriving's radar. e.    A project template they would love: The Security Governance and Compliance Checklist is perfect for this personality type to clearly see the protocols that ensure compliance with governance guidelines. This will make this type feel so policy-giddy, they may even forget to say their cringe-inducing, trademark greeting to you. And there you have it. Whether you’re refining data, or are in any other industry or sector where you are managing teams, chances are that there are correlations between who you manage and the templates that will serve them well. As Wrike is both the compiled and the manifested blend of “work,” “life,” and “right” (the polar opposite of Severance's plot), I wish you all a happy Wrike-ing. Chris Hare is an award-winning author and certified program and project management professional with 16 years of experience working for such companies as Adobe, Patagonia, and Guitar Center. Her tenure includes managing hundreds of successful projects for a myriad of client- and agency-side organizations, PMO permutations, and methodologies. At her current role at Wrike, she lends her industry thought leadership and subject matter expertise through product innovations, events, mentor groups, and blog columns. Have a question you’d like Chris to answer? Send us an email! Featured image: Apple TV Plus

How the San Francisco 49ers use Wrike
Wrike Tips 5 min read

How the San Francisco 49ers use Wrike

All great teams require an aligned game plan and flawless execution. Unfortunately, the complexity of today’s work environment makes both a challenge. But with the help of its innovation partner Citrix, the San Francisco 49ers are removing the complexity and noise from work, and empowering their team off the field to be as successful as their team on the field. When the 49ers first partnered with Citrix more than six years ago, the team was looking to streamline its operations and fuel collaboration. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, they enabled remote work for their employees quickly to support a dispersed workforce and keep its operations running, using digital workspace solutions to stay connected and collaborate. The addition of Wrike to the Citrix portfolio was great news for the 49ers — the team was already a customer. For the past three years, the 49ers have used Wrike’s project management solution to support production of video and media assets. They turned to Wrike because they were looking for a more efficient and effective way to serve internal partners who needed these assets. “We are a fully functioning creative agency housed within the 49ers marketing department,” says Nate Steele, Manager of Production and Media Assets. Steele’s team produces everything from sponsorship videos to images for the team’s social media channels. With games almost every weekend, from September to January, plus preseason and postseason, and requests for assets to support sponsors, community engagement, and more, having a tool that could enable effective communication and the quick turnarounds required was critical to managing the flow of work. And Wrike delivers. Improved communication and visibility Before Wrike, requests and follow-ups were getting buried in inboxes, leading to miscommunication and wasted time and effort. Now, requesters complete a customized form when they need help with production of video or other media assets. The information comes to Steele’s team, and the work can move forward without multiple follow-ups, speeding the process. “We were looking for a more useful way to get information amongst 49ers internal teams.  This platform allows dialogue between our team and the project requestor.  It provides a robust tool for tracking effort on project request and allows collaboration on edit requests and approvals” Steele says. For example, he can provide feedback to his video producers directly in the asset, which helps to streamline the review cycle. He can also track the time spent on projects, getting valuable insights into the amount of resources used to complete a request. Blueprints Wrike’s Blueprints feature has been one of the biggest advantages for Steele’s team. Blueprints enable users to manage projects, folders, task templates, and more, and the feature is especially useful for recurring work. They were able to cut the majority of phone calls and emails around projects, while still supporting mutual decision making, from which changes need to be made to whether a project should even go forward. Blueprints helps the team to get the information they need on the front end and eliminate barriers so they can do the work. “What we were doing here was buying back time for our team of content creators,” Steele says. Ready for remote Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the team worked together in a single location, and providing feedback on projects could be as simple as a face-to-face conversation. Having Wrike in place, Steele says, was a win for his team because they were already set up to support remote collaboration. They didn’t have to scramble at the onset of the pandemic to figure out how to engage remotely (and effectively) with content requestors and keep their content creators on track as they approached the 2020 season. Learn more Learn how Citrix helped to keep the 49ers connected and collaborative as they prepared for the 2020 season. Check out the video below to learn more about Citrix and Wrike and get your free trial of Wrike today.

Useful tips
Wrike Tips 3 min read

Useful tips

From time to time I find out some features that help users, but sometimes are not obvious enough. Hope you will find them useful. Usually I prefer to delete my long 6-lines signature when assigning tasks via e-mail. It allows me to avoid cramming the task description which comes from the e-mail body. Of course if the recipients know who I am and that this message will be transfered into the task in Wrike. If you want to let a person read an e-mail, but don't want to share a task (or a folder) with him or her, you simply put their e-mail address to the "Bcc" field. Where does the task disappear when you change its status to complete? It may become invisible. When you have hundreds of tasks, you will understand how convenient this is. If you still want to view or change the completed task, simply filter the tasks in the appropriate folder by status (choose ?ompleted or All in this case). What is the best way to edit a task and add your comments? Choose the way that seams most natural for you (and your team as well). I prefer to add my changes in the upper part of the “Description” field and sometimes add my signature if lots of people are involved in the task’s fulfillment. Sometimes there is a need to make changes in the text (if you correct the grammar for example). You can also add comments as we use to do it in blogs: one comment after another. Whom can you include in the fields “Assigned to” or “Also shared with”? Everyone you consider to be interested in your task’s progress. If a person isn’t registered, Wrike will do that for him or her. Since the moment you save the task changes people concerned are able to keep track of all the task changes via e-mail. They are also automatically registered in the system and receive an invitation with a password. Why didn't you receive an e-mail to confirm your registration? Please make sure you didn’t miss the e-mail in junk or spam folder.