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What clients can expect
This week a client asked me for a service level agreement. We’ve produced a few of them over the years but for more technical processes such as website management.
Given that managing expectations is key to good service, I approached the task with a broader client distribution in mind. As a result I’ve been drafting a ‘service promise’ that outlines what clients can expect when they work with us. And – fair’s fair - I’ve also outlined what we expect from them.
What do you think? Does this fairly represent what you would expect from us if you were a client? What else do you think we should expect from clients?
What you can expect from us:
- Listen and ask questions to make sure we are clear about your challenge, your audience and what you need.
- Always deliver creative and innovative ways to engage your audiences and deliver the results you need.
- Base all our recommendations on good insights, research and/or best practice models and frameworks.
- Deliver the best solution across multiple mediums including print, on-line and experiential.
- Give you our best professional advice on what the best course of action may be including challenging you (in a good way) if we think something isn’t right.
- Utilise your expertise as a subject-matter expert.
- Collaborate with you, and other parties you work with, to deliver the best results possible.
- Ensure our work is correct and accurate at all times.
- Assign you a dedicated relationship/project manager who will be your main point of contact for all dealings with us.
- Take the time to understand your industry, your business, your objectives and the way you like to work.
- Celebrate success with you.
- Always allocate the required resource volumes and skills to your projects to ensure we can deliver what you need within the agreed timeframe and budget.
- Return your calls, emails and texts within a reasonable timeframe.
- Provide you with estimates for all work we undertake and outline the assumptions we’ve used in the estimate.
- Never charge you more than the higher range of the estimate, unless the scope of the project has changed.
- Notify you if something is out of scope before taking on the additional work. We’ll provide you with estimates for the additional work as soon as we are able to.
- Deliver detailed project plans for all projects of a significant size, as agreed.
- Use clear project methodology that facilitates the efficient and effective delivery of projects on time and on budget.
- Keep you informed of progress against timeframes and budgets and raise any risks which arise that could compromise quality, budget or timeframe, at the soonest opportunity.
- Work with a network of specialist partners who have the skills and professional practices to help us deliver the outcomes you need.
- Take responsibility for all freelancers or contractors we bring in to help us deliver your work.
- Have the appropriate insurances in place for the nature of the work we do for you.
- Ensure adequate health and safety processes are in place for all work we undertake for you.
- Make all endeavours to keep material, information and other items provided to us confidential and safe.
- Notify you as soon as we become aware of any conflict of interest that may arise and propose a course of action to mitigate and manage the conflict to your satisfaction.
- Have a clear escalation process if you are not happy with some aspect of our work or the way we are working together.
- Comply with all applicable laws and regulations.
- Keep good records of all time we spend on your projects.
- Invoice monthly within eight working days of the end of the month.
What we expect from you in return:
- Provide us with reasonable notice of work you intend to give us so we can plan the right level and type of resources for what you need.
- Be open and forthright with all aspects of your business so that we can tailor our solutions to what’s right for you.
- Be clear with your objectives and how success will be measured.
- Give us some leeway to explore ideas and solutions that have the potential to deliver better strategic-creative outcomes.
- Be reasonable in your expectations: effectively balancing the budget, time and quality trade-offs to achieve the best result possible.
- Carefully consider all material we provide you before approving it. This helps minimise changes at later stages in the project which may add additional effort.
- Provide us with the necessary information, content and approvals in a timely and orderly manner that allows us to deliver the agreed specifications, budget and timelines.
- Keep us informed of any developments that may impact our ability to deliver the agreed specifications, budget and timelines.
- Give us the opportunity to address any issues or concerns you may have.
- Give us open and constructive feedback on our work and process so that we can continue to learn and grow as an organisation.
- Pay us for all work you commission us to do – whether you progress with it or not.
- Pay our invoices by the 20th of the month following the date of each invoice.
Leave a comment below with your thoughts!