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How to Handle Projects for Retainer Clients

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Level 8
Hi, I'm curious how other agencies that have retainer clients handle the project set up. For our clients on a retainer, i.e. not a one-time project, we scope out work month-by-month, so we also set up projects month-by-month; we also have projects by each team/service, i.e. SEO (this decision was made for billing/revenue reasons). There are a few pain points in doing this though. For example, if a project doesn't wrap up in a given month you could have multiple projects open for one client, which can be tedious to manage. Also, it makes finding documents harder, especially if you need to look back at a project; you may have to go into several projects before you find what you're looking for. Thanks in advance for your feedback! Jenn Jennifer Tanabe Director, Project Management Vertical Measures
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Level 1
As an internal agency we also have longer projects that follow an ongoing area of work in addition to individual open and shut projects. We don't have a great solve for the problems that you mention but the task structure is the biggest difference. For our group I think that we'll need to implement more standardized naming conventions for tasks so that we can report/search on certain kinds of tasks. For the document problem, I created a couple of custom forms to attach to documents, such as Save for Reference and Help Doc (there are a couple different kinds). PMs attach those forms as they go along and it greatly helps in finding things later. Kristen Cook ESPN