Projects basically help you divide the workload, all tasks and actions that need to be performed to deliver your services - whether those are based on a deal or not. In Teamleader, these steps are called milestones. And as always, we offer multiple ways to set up and distribute those milestones among your team.
The first question you should ask yourself is: how would you like to invoice your project? This will influence how your project will be structured. In Teamleader, you can easily create invoices based in milestones, which is why we recommend you to be clear on invoicing preferences before you set up a structure for your project.
Let's get started with our construction project. First of all, do note that a milestone is not a single task or meeting, it's more of an overarching group of steps within your project. For example, milestones for building a house could be:
- Buying a plot of land
- Hiring an architect
- Getting a loan from the bank
- Asking for permission with the city
- Building the house
- Moving in
Yes, we do know that building a house is a little more complicated in real life. But let's just keep things simple in our example - for the sake of clarity.
For each milestone, several tasks and meetings will need to be completed. To buy a plot of land, you'll first need to do research, visit a few websites, set up meetings to check different offers, set up a meeting with a real estate agent, etc. Those tasks and meetings are all part of the first milestone.
But you could also choose a different approach. Imagine that you want your house to be built within 12 months. This also gives you the opportunity to set up a structure for each month.
Say you want to buy a plot of land and find an architect in January. Before that, you'll need to browse the web to find a plot of land, set up meetings with real estate agencies and different architects. These tasks and meetings would then be part of your milestone January.
Now then, as we mentioned in the beginning, we should first determine how we will invoice our project. If you'd like to send out invoices on a monthly basis, you should set up your milestones accordingly - one for each month. If you want to invoice different steps of your projects, e.g. "buying a plot of land", "hiring an architect", then you should create milestones that correspond with each of those steps. Click here to learn more about how to invoice a project.
Basically, the milestones help you keep an overview of what needs to happen by when. You should look into the different options in terms of structure, but also investigate how you can make milestones mutually dependent.
Note: You can select the billing method of each milestone when creating the project.
This is specific to each company, which is why you'll need to decide on these things internally before setting up projects in Teamleader. Obviously, you can also use different structures for each project. If you do need advice, you can always contact us - we're happy to set you on the right track.
Once you've found structures that work best for you, you can start using project templates. Suppose you plan on building another house - you won't have to create milestones and corresponding tasks over and over again.
You'll probably realize - after having laid the foundation by setting up new milestones - that working in a team often helps. So let's check how you can cooperate by using projects. In each project, you mostly have one person who takes decisions and multiple people that contribute. Teamleader offers you the option to grant different rights to participants based on their role.
Budget spent on a project displays your client's budget and how much billable hours are spent. Budget management on projects is a way to keep track of the predetermined budget you and your customer have agreed upon. By allocating resources and estimating time on billable tasks & meetings, you'll know if you are going over budget.
Each project visualizes its profit by giving an overview of the costs you've incurred in relation to the revenue of the project. Read more about profit on projects here!
Click here to read the next part: Getting started: How can you add work and external costs to a project?