I want to tell you about a long-existing LiquidPlanner feature that I’ve only recently come to fully utilize and appreciate: Following plan items.
Following plan items lets you stay up-to-date on the activity of any package, project or task item that you don’t own, or aren’t otherwise involved in. Setting yourself as a follower will notify you whenever there are new comments, plan changes or decisions made on that particular project.
To follow an item, double-click on your plan item of interest to open the edit pane. Then, click the Follow button, as shown in the following screen shot.
Here’s how we use the Follow feature in my group, the Sales Team:
We on the sales team tend to spend the vast majority of our time helping people get as much work done as possible during their trial workspace period. As such, we tend to have a much lower number of items in our LiquidPlanner workspace than, say, someone from our development team. However, I set myself up to receive notifications about various projects I follow because it helps to know where certain tasks stand in our project pipeline. For example:
- I follow our Feature Request Inbox to see what sort of new functionality is most desired by our existing and prospective clients.
- I follow many of our marketing initiatives to better anticipate where incoming prospects are coming from and to give me insight into their habits and unique challenges.
- I follow our sprint (upcoming release) packages to get a better idea of when upcoming features are expected go live.
- What I find most rewarding is to follow the various design-related items to see how new features are taking shape. Some features are just a straight-forward expansion of existing functionality, but the most exciting new developments usually have a large scope and take shape through input from all teams within the organization.
Granted, not all organizations solicit this sort of discussion from their various teams, but even if I were just a casual observer, having access to this information in a bite-sized, ongoing fashion would leave me far better equipped to highlight the advantages of our system.
So if you don’t mind taking a few minutes out of your day to better understand what’s happening in your organization, I highly recommend that you try the Following plan items feature. And if you want to scale back, a single click of the Follow button will reverse the setting.
Are you currently using this feature, or one like it? Tell us how it worked for you in the Comments section, below.
Evan Hill is a Product Specialist for the LiquidPlanner Sales Team.