If you’re a manager or project lead, following up can be your frog. “Frogs,” as coined by popular author Brian Tracy, are the most challenging tasks you face each day. But workplace frogs aren’t always the most technically difficult or creatively demanding tasks: sometimes they’re the most boring ones.
Following up is an expected part of management, and it’s a critical part of staying on top of a project delivery. But chasing team members for answers is rarely the highlight on your list of job requirements.
Hundreds of articles will tell you how to “eat the frog,” whether it’s setting up a time window to knock out your follow ups in one go or wording a polite email that doesn’t include an apology for being annoying (there are 4,600+ articles dedicated to showing you how).
But with Kintone, you don’t have to “eat” anything.
You can automate your reminders
With Kintone you can set up automated reminders that will do all the follow up work for you. These automated reminders can feature customized messages and set to trigger upon a wide variety of conditions, including:
A project’s status (such as pending, in-progress, under review, completed)
A specific time/date (when a task record is created, the deadline, etc.)
A specific condition of the task (such as all records with an “NPO” label, or who the task is currently assigned to)
Once created, a reminder will continue to run under the set conditions until it’s modified or deleted. So if you want to remind your sales team to follow up a week or a month after a lead has been created, you only need to do it once and Kintone takes care of the rest.
“Before, we had a lack of visibility on the current status of each project and who needed to take the next action to move things forward. Now we have automated reminders, project status visibility, and clear assignments and accountability.” - Volvo Trucks North America
Here’s what an automated reminder looks like:
This automated reminder will notify a person three days before their deadline that it's coming up. Here's how that reminder looks when the user receives it:
Here’s how easy it is to set it up:
Going even further with notifications
In addition to reminders to your team, you can also set up notifications to track what’s going on outside your immediate scope. Kintone features two types of notifications alerts: General and Per Record
General notifications can be set so you, another administrator, or anyone else you choose gets notified whenever a new data record is added, edited, changed, or commented on.
So if you’re a sales director who wants to know every time a new prospect record is added, you can set that up. Or if you’re in accounting and want to know whenever someone adds a comment to their expense report, you can create that, too.
Here's an example of a General notification being created for a user submitting a ticket to their IT Support team. The General notifications are set up so that the requester (the person submitting the ticket) will be notified automatically whenever their ticket status changes.
Here’s what a General notification looks like:
How it looks when a requester receives a General notification:
Per Record notifications are a little more granular than General notifications. Rather than focus on the record as a whole, it allows you to set notifications about details in the record. You can set automated notifications that trigger whenever the status changes, a task deadline changes, or more.
Let's continue with the IT Support example. The General notification allows the submitter to know the status of their ticket without having to go back and manually check. But a Per Record notification allows IT to see when a new ticket has been submitted.
Here's what that Per Record notification would look like on IT's side:
Here’s what an Per Record notification looks like:
Here's how it looks when a IT team member receives the Per Record notice:
These notification features save you and the IT team from having to manually follow up every time a status change occurs; instead, the act of changing the task status itself triggers a notification that keeps everyone informed.
“I could write an entire book about how nice it is that Kintone can send automatic reminders. I no longer have to spend time following up and reminding people to do things." - Musical Empowerment
Why automation matters
A recent survey of 10,600 workers found that:
“People [spend] 58% of their day doing ‘work about work,’ including communicating about work, searching for information, switching between apps, and managing shift priorities and chasing status updates.” - CNBC make it
Automated reminders and notifications in Kintone can help offset some of the “work about work” that fills your daily routine, giving you more time back to get actual work done.
They also help remove the “nagging” element you might experience when you’ve followed up one-too-many times with that colleague who rarely responds. Now you’ve got a handy way to follow up without things feeling personal.
“Our patients have to get re-evaluated every year, and we’re able to set up custom reminders for these important dates. Rather than having to manually look into the database to see which children are due for a re-evaluation, my staff is notified 30 days before.” - MOST/DFW
Want to see how these could save you time?
If you want to learn more about how notifications can help automate away your busywork, set up a one-on-one demo with one of our product experts. Personal demos allow you to quickly see how Kintone can help your business; they’re also a great way to ask questions and learn what you need about the platform.
About the Author
Michelle is the Content Marketing Specialist at Kintone. She is a content marketing expert with several years in content marketing. She moved to San Francisco in 2015 and has experience working in small businesses, non-profits, and video production firms. She graduated in 2012 with a dual degree in Film and English.