Keeping your clients informed and up-to-date on their projects without annoying them with constant updates and check-ins can be challenging. The same goes for off boarding client communication at the end of the project, so they don’t feel like you’re stalking them from the moment they check out of your hotel until the day they remove all evidence of you from their Instagram feed.
Unfortunately, not many designers get training in communication and customer service skills when they start their careers. But it’s one of the most important things to keep in mind if you want to have happy clients and continue working with new ones again after that. Fortunately, both skills can be learned and improved over time. To help you do just that, here are some tips for managing off boarding client communication without losing your sanity.
Brief your team on what to communicate and when
Important milestones in a project include when the client signs the contract, when the deposit is paid, when milestones are reached, and when the project is complete (and everyone can breathe a sigh of relief). These dates will vary from client to client and from project to project. Like most things in design and business, it depends. When you brief your team, you also need to let them know if you’re working with a remote client and how you’re going to communicate with them.
Set expectations with your client
To avoid confusion and frustration, set expectations with your client at the beginning of the project. Depending on your client, you may want to put this in writing or email them a short summary of the key points they need to know.
You can start by asking them what they hope to get from the project and what results they expect. This will help you frame their expectations for the project scope. For example, if you’re redesigning their website, they may have in mind a very specific look for it. If you decide to stray from that, ensure you’re setting expectations for why you’re making the changes.
Check-in at key milestones.
Check-in at key milestones with your client to make sure they’re happy with the progress on offboarding client communication you’re making and to know whether they have any feedback or suggestions or not. This will reassure them that you’re on track and help you set expectations for what milestones need to be hit on the project.
Sometimes you may want to check in more frequently but if you do, make sure it’s when there’s a real reason to do so. Checking in too frequently can be annoying, so make sure each time you do it is justified. If you want to track these communications, use a project management tool like Basecamp so that you can see everything in one place. That way, you won’t lose track of anything, and everything will be in one place for you to refer back to if needed.
Estimate the time you’ll need for off boarding
Start thinking about off boarding client communication when the project ends, and you’re wrapping things up. This includes letting them know you’re wrapping up the project, checking in with them on what kind of designs, content, etc., are due, and letting them know their next steps. It’s important to plan for this time and not rush through it because it is just as important as the rest of the project.
Let your client know what they should expect when things are due and when you’ll be following them to get their feedback. You can also use this time to give them advice and a few tips on how they can use their new project to its fullest potential.
Why Do We Need Off boarding Client Communication Processes?
This move is made simpler for both parties by using an offboarding procedure. Offboarding assists businesses in reducing security concerns and avoiding legal problems (such as wrongful termination, compensation, and contract disputes.
Offboarding controls the employee experience when they leave the company. The process of successfully releasing a person from their employment after their resignation or termination is known as offboarding.
A well-executed offboarding procedure guarantees a seamless transition for the business and the departing employee. If we brief on why we need an offboarding client communication process, these are the reasons.
1. Create a better impression at first
If your company’s off boarding client communication procedure consists of a handshake and a quick exit, you’re probably doing reputational damage. Impersonal and negligent off boarding client communication can result in bad word-of-mouth, public criticism on social media, and business review websites like Glassdoor.
A successful off boarding client communication procedure will create a favorable lasting impression, enhancing the company’s employer brand. Additionally, it makes a place where workers may feel at ease resuming their duties in the future. These are referred to as boomerang workers.
Boomerang workers reap several rewards since they have more knowledge, experience, and maturity on the job when they come back. Additionally, recruiting managers is less risky when using boomerang personnel. Since they already know your company’s culture and need minimal training, your staff can reach its peak production quickly.
2. Acquire insightful information
As they reflect on their experience at the firm, departing workers are more inclined to be open and give honest criticism. This is excellent news since both positive and negative feedback may help an organization pinpoint its advantages and disadvantages as well as areas for development. Any knowledge a corporation can gain from its staff is beneficial.
3. Continue to comply
A good offboarding procedure serves as a tool for risk and compliance management. Exit interviews, for instance, are a preventative step to assist employers in finding any negative issues that have occurred throughout the employment (such as workplace bullying or discrimination), which may be reduced before they result in legal action or negative publicity.
Recovering firm assets and revoking system access are further offboarding procedures that guard against compliance-related issues.
If you want to keep your clients happy, make sure they’re in the loop. This will also help keep you sane because you won’t have to worry about clients asking if they’re on track or if everything is going well. If you’re a client, be sure to read this article and ask your designer if they’re doing these things.
If you’re a designer working with clients, keep in mind that the more you brief your team, the better they can communicate with their clients. This will help keep your clients happy and stop you from being the bad guy when they want to know what’s happening. Communication is very cruical for a successful client relationship.