After devoting weeks, months, or even years into a project, it’s an often frustrating fact that everything can still go wrong right at the last minute.
All of the work that goes into a professional project will amount to nothing if it isn’t delivered correctly.
If the client doesn’t know how to use what you’ve made, or if they don’t know where to find the resources they need, they won’t be satisfied with the work you’ve done.
In this post, we’ll explain why delivery plays such a vital role in every project, and we’ll take a look at how you can approach delivery to ensure a successful handoff.
Don’t Drop the Meal Before it Gets to the Table
Imagine that you run a restaurant. Imagine that your chefs have prepared a perfect meal, exactly as the customer ordered it.
They pass it off to the waitstaff, who bring it quickly over to the right table.
Then, just before the server can put the dish down, they slip and the whole meal falls to the floor.
It doesn’t matter how well the food was prepared in the kitchen; if it doesn’t get to the table safely, then you’re in trouble.
You’re going to have to make the food all over again, repeating work you’ve already done and trying desperately to restore the customer’s experience.
How to Ensure a Great Delivery, Every Time
This hypothetical story illustrates a concept that’s critical to any agency or other B2B companies: you need to make sure your delivery method is as good as the rest of the work you do.
Before co-founding XRay, CEO Tom Nassr ran a digital design agency called Checkmate.Digital for several years, along with a few other members of XRay’s current team.
We’ve been in the agency world for a long time now, and these are what we’ve found to be the key traits of a successful delivery.
Easy Access to Key Resources
First, the client needs easy access to all of the work you’ve done. If they can’t find it, they can’t use it, and from their perspective, you essentially didn’t do it.
All of the files, assets, links, forms or resources that they need to use your work should be easily accessible.
Documentation for the End Users
Second, the client needs to know how it all works.
A new website with a fancy CMS won’t do anyone much good if they don’t know how to actually upload content.
Including documentation with your project is always a good idea if you’ve built anything technical for your client.
Documentation for Training
Third, the client needs to be able to train others on their team.
You don’t want the company to drop your product the second that they hire new talent or reorganize.
You need to ensure that they can teach others how to use what you’ve made. So when you’re preparing your documentation, make sure it’s suitable for anyone, regardless of their role or technical skill level.
Keep everything organized
Finally, you don’t want the client to have to ask you to send material again.
Of course, continued communication for new features, new pages or bug fixes is vital for a long-term partnership.
But when your clients are forced to ask you for links, resources, and training docs over and over again, it’s just a frustrating waste of everyone’s time, and it shows that your delivery process wasn’t organized well enough in the first place.
To sum it up, delivery should be well-organized, with links and easy access to everything the client needs to utilize your deliverable.
You should include documentation so they can use the material, and train their team.
And if it’s all working correctly, they’ll never have to ask you “where can I find this?” again.
XRay’s Delivery Solution: XRay.Studio
Using a combination of apps like Google Drive for file sharing and Notion for documentation can be a decent way to conduct delivery.
But having different resources spread across various apps makes delivery messy. It’s exactly the sort of situation that causes clients to lose track of what you’ve sent them.
And if you have clients on different software, your team will have difficulty keeping track of their own work.
Building Our Own Delivery Platform
Since there weren’t any great delivery tools on the market that did what we wanted, we decided to build one ourselves.
XRay.Studio is our own project delivery and workflow management platform. It lets you save links, embed documents and web apps, and share resources from all over the internet on a single board.
Your training docs can be saved right alongside the client’s sign-in portal, or organized in a group with Google drive links for the assets they need to download. So instead of jumping between an email and a Notion page and a CMS portal, your client can just open up an XRay.Studio board and follow the process one step at a time.
All of the information and context they need is right there, so they don’t need to switch between tabs or search for important files. Most importantly, it’s both a surface for your team to organize deliverables internally, as well as a surface that your clients can reference for all the material they need, regardless of the tools used to create it.
Join the XRay.Studio Beta
XRay.Studio is currently in beta as we keep adding and polishing features. If you’d like to sign up for the free beta, just go to XRay dot Studio.
You’ll get a 1:1 onboarding call and be all set to deliver your work like never before. We want XRay.Studio to be the perfect platform for sharing projects and workflows, so your feedback will be essential.
And if you’re not interested in XRay.Studio, you can still follow the delivery tips that we’ve outlined in this post to make sure that you can carry your projects successfully over the finish line.
Craft a Delivery process that lives up to your standards
Ultimately, there’s nothing more devastating than falling at the last hurdle. When you’ve put your best work into a project, you want to make sure that handoff is as smooth as possible.
An organized delivery process with thorough documentation and easy access to key resources is a great way to ensure success. And if you’re interested, we’ve developed XRay.Studio to make delivery as impressive as the work you do.
If you’d like to learn more about designing and optimizing your workflows, check out our blog or our YouTube channel. You can also follow XRay on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.