Enova International is a leading provider of online financial services and has a portfolio of 10 trusted brands serving consumers and small business around the world. For the 1,200-person firm based in Chicago, most of the agency’s projects are centered around digital marketing such as websites, blogs, landing pages, email campaigns, and video, but also include direct mail and some brochures.
Manager of Enova Studios, Joanna B., describes her in-house agency as a “small but mighty team.” Mighty is an apt description for the 16-member team of designers, writers, and other creative professionals because at any given time the busy group is managing over 150 creative projects for Enova’s numerous business units. Overall, RoboHead has helped increase the group’s productivity.
With hundreds of marketing projects moving through the pipeline annually, Enova Studios needed a more robust project management solution than its previous tracking system, which consisted of two separate software packages. The agency was using one system for its job request form and another for project management. Problems arose when they tried to connect the two systems, which caused frustration and made it clear that they needed an automated, elegant, all-in-one solution.
We didn’t have timelines, and the next steps weren’t clear.Joanna B. – Enova Studios Manager
Enova Studio’s team chose RoboHead because it “Offered the best mix of intake forms without having to customize or upgrade.” Before implementing RoboHead, Joanna recalls the chaos of sticky notes and cryptic messages left on her desk by clients who would wander by the group’s work area. Gone, too, are the inbox-clogging emails between agency and clients that accompanied each project. Now, all project feedback is time and date-stamped for accountability, which has increased productivity and improved quality.
Of the 10 to 15 project management programs we vetted, RoboHead offered the best mix of intake forms without having to customize or upgrade.Enova Project Manager
In addition to storing project feedback, Enova also uses RoboHead to obtain necessary project information and specifications upfront, ensuring that they get the right information the first time so that they can review and approve the requests quickly.
During the transition, agency members found RoboHead’s online video tutorials and training sessions helpful, especially the videos explaining the dashboard. “We have all new employees in our group view the videos to learn the system basics,” Joanna shares. From start to finish, Enova had RoboHead up and running in two weeks.
Customized Project Request Forms
RoboHead’s flexibility in tailoring intake forms makes it an ideal solution for an in-house agency serving multiple divisions and brands. “We have 11 customized project request forms our clients can use, and there are anywhere from two to five different variations of each of these,” says Joanna. “It’s been incredibly valuable to be able to capture all the important information up front and to be able to customize the form ourselves.” Every year the agency gathers feedback from its clients to see what if anything should be changed regarding the forms.
Previously a client may have handed Joanna a PowerPoint mockup with colors and fonts already specified. Now, the start of a project begins with the client answering questions like these:
- What is the business problem you’re trying to solve?
- What is your proposed solution?
- Who’s your audience?
- How will this support your goals?
With this information living in RoboHead, writers and designers can immediately go to work creating a solution that addresses the client’s business problem— bypassing the conversations regarding creative execution. “Now we can focus on the customer journey and the user experience,” shares Joanna. Additionally, she says, “We no longer have to rely on our memory to recall project details.”
Improved Client Communication
Another problem RoboHead solved for the Enova team is improving communication with their internal clients. Sometimes clients get busy with other aspects of their jobs and may forget to log into RoboHead and approve a project. Joanna and her colleagues have tailored workflows within the software that can send out reminders (aka “nudges”) if a client has not reviewed or signed off on a project before it can advance to the next step. “We build in these nudges, so we’re proactively moving the project forward.”
Increased Productivity and Improved Quality
Consolidating feedback from numerous stakeholders who want changes and revisions made to a project that’s in production can be a challenge. RoboHead, however, cleverly ties feedback to every project and keeps it in a single location for anyone to access. Says Joanna, “For auditing purposes, we can always go back and reference those reviews and stakeholder comments. If the comments are extensive, we use that as the primary feedback.”
Improved Metric Tracking via Comprehensive Reporting
Enova Studio’s management team also uses RoboHead’s reporting features to keep track of project progress automatically. “We send out a scheduled weekly report to all of our stakeholders and can generate a spreadsheet and keep track of what’s on time, what’s delayed and what’s ahead of schedule,” Joanna shares. “We’re able to run, format and share a report in 15 minutes.”
It was essential to have an interface that was “collaborative and transparent,” especially with more than 16 people accessing the project management system at any given time. “RoboHead also solved a couple of problems that we didn’t know we had.” For instance, Joanna was never able to assign tasks to specific roles, which left team members unsure of what they should be working on next. “A manager would have to ask, or problem solve for every project. Through RoboHead we can see predecessor tasks and if they’re not complete. RoboHead lets everyone know when things are ready in real-time,” she says.
Since Enova is in a highly-regulated industry, its marketing projects are reviewed by company experts. Content is scrutinized by legal, product managers, brand managers, and design to make sure projects adhere to government regulations, corporate brand standards, and internal compliance. And all of these approvals must occur before the group’s internal clients can even set eyes on a project. “RoboHead lets us stay on top of all the approvals as we assign roles at the start of a project. You can imagine, it’s saved us a lot of time,” shares Joanna. Using the software’s built-in templates alone saves a project manager about 20 minutes each time someone creates a new project. During a typical day that time-savings can translate into hours.
RoboHead Team Size: 200+
33% decrease in project duration
75% decrease in task duration
RoboHead lets us stay on top of all the approvals as we assign roles at the start of a project…it’s saved us a lot of time.Joanna B. – Manager, Enova Studios
After working with RoboHead for four years, it’s difficult for Joanna, and the team at Enova to imagine going back to the way her group used to manage projects. “There’s a lot less time that we’re having to internally figure out what’s going on with the project because everything is there at a glance,” she says. Additionally, Enova’s agency members love how RoboHead has streamlined its operations, which helps them produce better work and provide more accountability on both sides of a project. Managers also document the project’s business objectives and client feedback. If the scope changes during production, it’s no longer a problem. The team quickly pivots and starts over. In the end, Joanna says, “That’s how we’re able to produce better work.”
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