Full Sail Partners Blog

Lindsay Diven

Recent Posts

Easily Capture Project Information Using Deltek Vantagepoint

Posted by Lindsay Diven on Wed, Jul 22, 2020 @ 11:35 AM

Project information checklist

Have you ever noticed how the proposal process tends to fly by leaving you scrambling as the deadline nears? When producing proposals, project-related information needs to be found quickly. Of course, speed is important in the search, but data accuracy is imperative. Gathering accurate project details in a timely manner is a challenge I hear of nearly every day from marketing and proposal managers at project-based firms. Fortunately, with Deltek Vantagepoint, your teams can easily capture project information and reference it quickly when it matters most– during proposal crunch time. Let’s dive a little deeper.

Identify the Key Project Information You Need for Proposals

The Deltek Vantagepoint Projects Hub will become your one source of truth for the project information you need to rely on to produce winning proposals. The image below shows a project experience page created using Deltek Vantagepoint Custom Proposals. The page was built based on information captured in the Projects Hub and includes fields such as project name, project description, client name, project manager, and square footage along with a few project images.

Project experience page

 

Capture Information While Pursuing the Project

Using Deltek Vantagepoint, capturing critical project information begins in the pursuit stage. Because Deltek Vantagepoint has one project record that is maintained from opportunity to pursuit to proposal and eventually to a regular project record, the information captured during the pursuit never gets lost or goes unused.

Project in pursuit stage

The image above is showing a project in a pursuit stage. We can tell this record is in a pursuit stage because the coloring in the left-hand summary pane is gold and the Stage is labeled as Pending. During this stage, there is common key project information that is typically collected as part of the proposal process.

Much of the information you will eventually need for your project cut sheets and proposals is typically known during the pursuit stage, and thus can be collected and stored inside the project record in Deltek Vantagepoint.

Examples of common key project information include:

  • Project Name
  • Primary Client and Contact
  • Project Location
  • Key Team Members, such as Principal-in-Charge, Project Manager

You can also identify other team members, both internal and external to your firm, for the project. See image below.

Project team

Over on the Dates & Costs tab, you can begin to capture the estimated project start and completion dates.

Project dates & costs

You may even have some information about the project from the RFP or client description of the project. Deltek Vantagepoint allows you to easily store an initial project description on the Proposals tab.

Project description

 

Move From Pursuit to Billable Project Without Losing Key Information

Now you might be thinking, why would I want to store this information into a record that is in pursuit? Well, Deltek Vantagepoint makes it seamless to move from a pursuit stage to an awarded project stage. When you make that move, all of the information captured in the pursuit stage stays with the awarded project record. This makes the process more efficient. Information is entered only once and is used throughout the project lifecycle.

Pursuit to Billable Project

 

Access the Data You Need When You Need It

Once you have won the project and are performing the work, you can easily continue to enter and access key project data:

Key Team Members

Over on the Team tab, Employees are automatically added to the project when they charge time to that project on their timesheet. Then, you can easily update their role on the project.

Team members

In the image above, you can also see the number of hours employees have charged to this project. Additionally on the Team tab, you can add external contacts that should be associated with the project. You can even identify who should be the project reference (for future proposals, of course).

Project Descriptions

As the project evolves, you will have more details to include in the project description. That information can quickly be added to Deltek Vantagepoint on the Proposals tab. Deltek Vantagepoint allows you to store different types of project descriptions that you may need for different uses. Examples may include short description, long description, key features, etc.

Firms often have a primary project description that is used on project cut sheets, but then may need a project description that is shorter. The shorter descriptions might be good for resumes or when page limits are tight. You can mark one description as the default by checking the default checkbox. No matter how you use your project descriptions, Deltek Vantagepoint makes it easy to store and use project descriptions for proposals.

Description options

Track Project Awards

Chances are you have some award-winning projects. Vantagepoint makes it easy to track what awards your projects win in the Awards grid as shown in the image above.

Project Photos

If you want to use project photos in your proposals, Deltek Vantagepoint allows you to store and manage images and other project related documents on the Files & Links tab.

Files & Links tab

Information Specific to Your Firm’s Projects

If there is information that is specific to your firm’s project, Deltek Vantagepoint allows you to create custom fields, grids, and tabs. The image below is showing a custom tab called Project Information. On this, I have added custom fields like square footage or number of floors. Other popular custom fields are around tracking sustainability goals such as LEED Certifications.

Custom tab and fields

 

Drive Success with Deltek Vantagepoint

As you can see, Deltek Vantagepoint allows you to easily track key project information through the entire project lifecycle, from initial lead to project completion. That information can then be quickly used to build winning proposals that drive success for your firm. 

New call-to-action

Topics: Technology Solutions, CRM, Deltek Vantagepoint

Tackling Resume and Project Updates to Promote Business Development

Posted by Lindsay Diven on Wed, Mar 06, 2019 @ 11:35 AM

Update Data In project-based firms, marketers play a huge role in business development. They are responsible for keeping company content up to date. Overall, their goal is to have information to promote the firm, its project managers and staff, and its projects. Tackling resumes and project information will ultimately lead to more work for the firm, so it is a necessity to get it done.

Painting a Picture of the Firm

What makes a firm stand out is its people. Every individual is unique and brings specialized experience to the firm. It is important for marketers to show off these skills to promote business development. Thus, marketers must ensure that everyone’s resume is up to date. The certifications, licenses and bios paint a picture of what clients will get if they choose to go with that firm for their projects.

The ideal time to update information is with newly hired people. Once HR has made an offer, marketing can then proceed with identifying the relevant information for content creation. Information should also be gathered on an on-going basis at an established frequency like work anniversaries. Better yet, this can all be done using an automated system.

Crafting the Story to Tell

Another significant way to develop business is through case studies. Potential clients want to know that their projects will be efficiently run and meet their expectations. Stories of smoothly run projects with ideal results are what they desire to see in the firm’s marketing materials.

Marketers need to have successful project details that can be presented to these potential clients. One option is to invite project managers to lunch and there they can fill out project information data. Project information can even be acquired by on-site visits where a marketer is walked through and given a visual of the project. Some firms, once a job is awarded, send someone from marketing to track the project through its duration.

Project information collection and updating can also be automated to ease the burden. Marketers can get project updates at certain milestones depending upon how their stories need to be told. Whatever means your project information is gathered, it is important for marketing to get the specifics showing potential clients why your firm is the one to go with for the next project.

Developing Your Data Collection and Maintenance Program

Now you see the need for marketers to tackle resumes and update project information in order to promote business development. The next question is how can I make all of this happen? Make sure to attend upcoming SMPS regional conferences to watch me, Lindsay Diven, CSPM, Senior Consultant at Full Sail Partners present on this topic.

New Call-to-action 

Topics: Technology Solutions, Deltek Vision, Deltek Vantagepoint

Work More Efficiently with Deltek’s New Vantagepoint

Posted by Lindsay Diven on Wed, Jan 16, 2019 @ 11:30 AM

Deltek VantagepointWith the new Deltek Vantagepoint, Vision is re-imagined. Not only has the look and feel been improved, but there are many new enhancements that all users will love. This new browser-based solution helps your firm deliver more successful projects and grow your business. It’s built around the project—from finding, pursuing, winning, and delivering them. 

In the last quarter of 2018, Full Sail Partners’ consultants participated in early adopter testing of the Vantagepoint 2.0 solution. To say we are impressed with the new features and streamlined design and framework is an understatement.

In this article, three of our consultants share what sets Vantagepoint apart from Vision and why you should be excited. We will go into detail from Employee Scorecards and Project Plans to Multiple Dashboards and Milestone Dashparts.

While change can be scary, we assure that you will fall in love with the Vantagepoint enhancements we have seen so far, just like we did. 

Intuitive Business Development

Lindsay Diven, CPSM is a Senior Consultant for Full Sail Partners. Below are just a few of my new favorite features of Vantagepoint.

  • All Companies in One Place – The previous Clients and Vendors has been combined to form a new hub called Companies.
  • All People in One Place – The previous Leads and Contacts info center has been combined to form a new hub called People.
  • Easily See All Associations for People and Companies – With streamlined hubs, you can easily see all the projects a company is associated with – either as a subconsultant or a prime.
  • Easier Searching – You can easily build searches on the fly. You can add a field quickly and instantly preview results.
  • Milestones Dashpart – A place to track and display all your CRM and proposal deadlines.
  • Visual Dashboards by Function – You can easily toggle between Business Development, Project Management and Executive/Owner level dashboards.
  • New Drag and Drop Proposal Builder – Long gone are the days of coding and testing merge templates! You can now see what your proposal looks like as you are building it.

Efficient Project and Resource Management

Below Principal Consultant, Matt McCauley, shares some of his favorite new aspects of Vantagepoint for creating and managing projects as well as managing resources.

  • Create a Project and Plan Simultaneously – When you create a new Project Record, a Project Plan is automatically created.
  • Add Multiple Resources to a Project at One Time – Quickly add multiple resources to a project with a few clicks.
  • View Resource Management by Employee or by Project – Gain greater visibility into resource utilization.

Streamlined Accounting Functions

We sat down with Scott Gailhouse, Principal Consultant, to ask what his favorite new features of Vantagepoint are. He listed the following:

  • All Reports in One Place – Get the information you need to make actionable decisions easily and quickly.
  • Best of Both Worlds: Batch or Single Entry – Save time with easy functionality that allows for processing multiple transactions with a click of a button.
  • Expanded Approval Center – New Approval center includes absence requests, expense lines, expense reports, timesheets and timesheet lines. You can also view the progress of the approval workflow.
  • Update Fees in Interactive Billing – Update project fees while processing invoices.
  • Employee Cards and Timesheet Calendar – New Outlook integration that allows for timesheets to be updated from a user’s Outlook calendar.

Learn More about Deltek Vantagepoint

To learn more about these new features and see examples, make sure to watch our webinar Things We Love About Deltek Vantagepoint So Far. This is the first in a series of webinars on how to prepare for Vantagepoint.

Deltek Vantagepoint  

Topics: Technology Solutions, New Features, Deltek Vantagepoint

5 Things you Didn’t Know iAccess Could do for Marketing and Business Development

Posted by Lindsay Diven on Fri, Mar 23, 2018 @ 11:46 AM

Deltek iAccessAcquiring and maintaining accurate client data is absolutely necessary for both marketers and business developers. Marketers need it to provide valuable content to clients and business developers for a successful sales pipeline. Additionally, as with any other firm department, both marketers and business developers need a way to track their efficiency and effectiveness. With iAccess, this all can be achieved. Here are five things you probably weren’t aware of that iAccess can do for marketing and business development:

1. On the Go CRM Without an App

Business developers and marketers spend lots of time on the go rather than at their desks. With iAccess, you can use the web browser in your mobile devices to update your CRM and keep data current. We recommend saving it as a bookmark or using the “Add to Home Screen” option for even quicker access on the go. 

Furthermore, the iAccess Business Development workspace enables you to contribute and maintain key pipeline information wherever you are as long as you have an internet connection. 

2. Enter and Edit Contacts, Opportunities, and Touch Points

Using iAccess, you can work with Contacts and Opportunities as well as set up touch points. Under the Contacts tab, you can perform basic searches and add contacts. The contact area provides quick access to key information for your contacts such as title, phone numbers, company, location and email address. You can even add image links into contact records.

From the Opportunities tab, you can view all your current opportunities as well as add new opportunities. You can easily change and view data such as the opportunity stage or see what client you are working on. Additionally, you can view and update the touch points as well as quickly add a touch point within any of the tabs by clicking on add touchpoint under the Touchpoint tab.

If the standard saved searches don’t provide the information you need, you can create a custom search. When you create a custom search, you can save it for the future, so you do not have to continually recreate the search parameters. 

3. Easily Sort, Filter, and Export Opportunity Reports

Opportunities are found within the Business Development workspace of iAccess. Here you have critical information at your fingertips. You have the option to sort opportunities by active opportunities, all opportunities or just those that you are associated with as part of the team. See the opportunities instantly as you filter and organize. These reports can then be exported to wherever you want them to go.

4. Track Your Department Spending

Another nice feature of iAccess is that you can use it to track department spending and can make sure you are being effective and efficient with your resources. If you set up budgets for Promotional Projects, you can easily see where you are Job to Date (JTD) and Year to Date (YTD) for that project. In that project record using the Project Management workspace, iAccess provides visuals to  see the labor and expenses that have been charged to the promo number and what budget is left.

5. Update Contact Notes Using Talk to Text 

A final iAccess benefit is that you can use “talk to text” to update Contact and Opportunity records. When you open iAccess using your mobile devices (explained above), you can use the talk to text feature to update any field. We like to update touch points and notes using this talk to text method. There couldn’t be an easier way to provide a meeting summary after visiting a contact. 

Let iAccess Work for Marketing and Business Development 

Now that you have discovered five things that iAccess can do for marketing and business development, are you ready to try it out? For more information, check out these past webinars to get an introduction to iAccess for business developers and to learn how to connect to Vision from anywhere with iAccess. Lastly, if you’re attending the SMPS Southwest Regional Conference, make sure to attend Lindsay Diven’s pre-conference Vision CRM workshop.

New Call-to-action

Topics: Building Business, Marketing, Deltek Vision

New Year’s Resolutions for Business Development and Marketing Professionals

Posted by Lindsay Diven on Wed, Dec 13, 2017 @ 09:00 AM

New Year's Resolutions After the ball drops every New Year’s Eve, the song “Auld Lang Syne” triggers everyone to begin a personal reflection of the past. Similarly, at the end of a year and on a professional level, business development and marketing professionals should look back at the previous year and evaluate the results of their efforts. How they use this information will help them strategize for the following year and improve upon performance. Here are some New Year’s resolutions that business development and marketing professionals should make to get the most out of next year.

New Year’s Resolutions for Business Development 

Improving client relationships is essential to generating more sales and revenue. Here are five ways to help nurture better client relationships.   

  1. Streamline your client engagement/touchpoint activities. Distill your activities to the essentials to shorten sales cycles while providing high-value interactions with clients and prospects.
  2. Get to know your clients better. Ask the right questions and actively listen to the client’s answers.
  3. Coordinate and collaborate with the marketing team on a regular basis.
  4. Embrace new technology. Communicate with prospects and clients and record information gained. Share this information with internal teams.
  5. Stop checking in. Instead, use your database to connect with prospects using meaningful conversations or useful content. 

New Year’s Resolutions for Marketers 

While marketing requires evaluating the performance of efforts throughout the year, using this data to become more effective for the next year is a difficult task. Here are five ways marketers can increase the impact of marketing plans for the new year. 

  1. Examine last year’s marketing campaigns and see which ones met your goals. Determine how you will use this information for next year’s planning.
  2. Take a hard look at your process for collecting and maintaining your information/data. Make it a goal to get all your data centralized into one place.
  3. Coordinate and collaborate with the business development/sales teams on a regular basis.
  4. Create high-quality, value-based content that your clients and prospects need.
  5. Understand the client experience journey from prospect to project delivery. How can you, as a marketer, improve your client experience to differentiate your firm? 

Increase Business and Revenue in 2018! 

With the New Year comes the potential to increase sales goals and revenue. This is the best time to make changes and adjustments to business development and marketing strategies. Follow these New Year’s resolutions to be more productive in your marketing and business development efforts for 2018.    

Streamline Proposals with Deltek Vision

Topics: Building Business, Marketing, CRM