Does this design review meeting dialog (by Brad Frost) from sound familiar?
SCENE: A design review meeting. Laptop screens. Coffee cups.
Project manager: Hey, did you get my email with the assets we’ll be discussing?
Client: I got an email from you, but it looks like there’s no attachment.
PM: Whoops! OK. ’m resending the files with the attachments. Check again?
Client: OK, I see them. It’s homepage_v3_brian-edits_FINAL_for-review.pdf, right?
PM: Yeah, that’s the one.
Client: OK, hang on, Bill’s going to print them out. (3-minute pause. Small talk ensues.)
Client: Alright, Bill’s back. We’re good to start.
Brian: Oh, actually those homepage edits we talked about last time are in the homepage_v4_brian_FINAL_v2.pdf document that I posted to Basecamp earlier today.
Client: Oh, OK. What message thread was that in?
Brian: Uh, I’m pretty sure it’s in “Homepage Edits and Holiday Schedule.”
Client: Alright, I see them. Bill’s going back to the printer. Hang on a sec…
Unfortunately, this is how things tend to go–and this only describes the meeting. Outside of meetings, much more time is wasted on a typical design project be it chasing down the latest version of assets, or trying to find a decision/approval in an email thread.
There are many tools that attempt to solve this problem, but I appreciate the transparency and simplicity of the Project Hubs Brad describes. I’ve been a fan since I saw him use it on an open redesign project. The implementation of this can be quite simple, and there is timeline template on Github if you don’t want to create your own.