As our client, you really don’t care how many other clients we have or how many projects we’re working on at any given time. You just want your project completed when you need it. That’s where our process comes in. We have to follow the process we have in place to make sure that all projects are completed in a timely manner and it’s my job is to ensure you get that project when you want it.
I’m the Traffic Manager for Esparza. And boy do I love to tell people what I do for a living. It’s a great icebreaker because if you’re not in advertising you have no clue what that means. People think it might actually have something to do with vehicle traffic. But no, I just move your project along until it gets to you, our client, on time.
As the Traffic Manager, I touch every single project that comes through the agency. It’s my job to ensure that our projects are on time and on budget. I move or make sure each job is moved from point A to point B (between strategy, media and creative teams). Some projects are pretty straightforward. Others, not so much. They have lot of points. Copy, approval, more or less copy another approval, designs, revised designs and revised designs. You get the idea, complicated. And along the way I have to make sure we meet the final deadline.
I check individual schedules so no one person is overloaded with work. Every client has an assigned team, an account executive and a creative person. Sometimes though, there’s a lot of work flowing through the agency. So, I help the account team figure out which creative person will be working on each project. That means there might be cross mingling – a different creative person might work on a client they don’t typically work on. My team knows how to flex.
To make sure nothing falls through the cracks, I have a couple tools at my disposal. We have a white board that has the upcoming daily deadlines for the next two weeks and who is working on each. I utilize Webvantage (agency tracking software) task list and update it as each task is completed or a new task is added. The AE opens a job and the process begins. I enter the information onto Webvantage and on our whiteboard. About mid-afternoon, I check my boards and check-in with my creative team to ensure they will finish all projects due for that day. As a group, we meet at 8:15 every single day to discuss what’s due that day and what projects are coming up in the next two weeks.
If a project is going to require more time, I work with the account team to figure out what our next move will be. I have detailed production checklists and use them to assign tasks to each employee for every phase of the project.
These steps help to ensure the client is happy and we keep moving forward as a cohesive team. The agency functions smoothly when we all work together and move each project according to the schedule. The ultimate goal is to make sure our client gets what they want when they want it. The team that surrounds me makes that happen every day so there are no traffic jams.