Automate Project Initiation with Wrike Request Forms!

So, you've created a blueprint, but you still haven't found a way to easily collect a project's objectives, requirements, constraints, and general stakeholder expectations without holding a meeting (ugh). Have you been using Request Forms to your advantage? If not, start today!

Creating a request form can allow you to generate a URL to post on your intranet (proactive) or email the URL to any stakeholder after they've inquired about a product or solution from your team (reactive). For example, you can create a form with required fields to collect details on the project, including but not limited to scope, timeframe (i.e., expected start and completion dates), key stakeholder lists, related files (recipients can upload multiple files so they save to the project!), and any other information you'd like to collect upfront. 

And the best part? That project blueprint you created will become automatically populated with all of those details so you can move right into the project kickoff call instead of hosting a discovery meeting (that is after you review and assess the project with your team!). 

Working with a virtual team or don't have time to meet on every Request Form submission? Configure a custom workflow to trigger from the completed form to notify key team members, or add an approval workflow to allow for project acceptance and validation!

Using Wrike Request Forms is both a time-saver and a means to collect accurate, detailed information (in writing) so you don't waste time guessing, assuming, or "interpreting" what your stakeholders are really asking for. 

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Hi Anthony Fronza, thank you for sharing this best practice 🤗 I'm sure your tips will be helpful to the Community; I've featured your post on the main Community page now 👍

Are you also using the external request forms, or is it just your internal intake? 

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Thank you Lisa! We use multiple forms in various ways. We manage Change Requests using internal forms but the majority are external, including Webinar Requests, Product Development Requests, etc. I'm happy to share more!

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That's great, thank you for letting me know Anthony Fronza

I'm sure it would be very useful to the Community if you could share more of your use-cases and best practices in relation to the forms 🤗

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Howdy Anthony Fronza,

Great user case, two things to consider:

1. You talk about using a project blueprint but not the reason that you do so, do you have a standardised project structure? What is it? Do you often deviate away from this structure? Do you make the blueprint full of everything you might need and then remove any subtasks you don't need manually?

  • If so have you considered using a dropdown (my preference because it requires less user knowledge and takes them less time) or checkboxes for the user to specify project requirements and then you can fill tasks in from task blueprints, for example:
  • Sadly this makes dependencies more difficult / have to be done manually.

2. You say "That project blueprint you created will become automatically populated with all of those details" custom field data sadly isn't cascaded to subtasks (yet, see: https://help.wrike.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/115000313265-Custom-fields-of-a-folder-and-being-important-should-be-attributed-to-tasks-issues-in-that-folder?no-translation-de ) however a potential solution to this - if you think it'd be helpful to your user case - is the paid add on Wrike Integrate, see community post: https://help.wrike.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360039414333

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Hi, George! Thank you for providing your feedback on my post. Currently, we're using blueprints as our standard and I've addressed using them in our Team Charter. We custom-tailor our blueprints based on the project type. For example, we use a blueprint titled Solution Development, which includes our standard procedures, tasks, instructions, scope statement, and assignments for development needs; with the option to delete or cancel a task (or mark it as N/A to avoid deleting it).

I was not aware of the custom field data not cascading to subtasks, but, we're fine so long as the custom fields appear in each task from using the Blueprint. I'll keep my eyes peeled for an update on the latter and will vote to create the feature! 

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We are a custom engineering firm - and our projects are anywhere from 8-18months long. So projects aren't user generated! 

Once we get the customer order - our PM populates the project using blueprints - but not through use of forms.

The closest thing we have is what we call "workshop requests" - which are tasks generated by our engineers or sometimes a spare part order. These are little "mini projects" I guess - where the engineers can request 3D printing for RnD or request a machine shop operator to modify or make a part. 

 

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Great use case! We have another way that we use Wrike to spin up projects where we leverage our Salesforce Opportunity entries and by use of Wrike Integrate, we select a template to spin up the project all information is sent to Wrike from the opportunity! This has been a HUGE time saver for us as well as a great reduction in human error and increased speed to market! 

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Very good idea which can be used in many variations.

One feature I'm missing with request forms is the abillity to add followers instread of asignees. It can be done instread by tagging the task to a specific folder, where the regarding persons are set as auto-follower, but that's only another workaround.

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George Fiveash Very interesting idea to include subtasks as add-ons in your form. How do you manage rescheduling their due dates within the form?

We currently use one form to clone the project and a separate request to add "as applicable" tasks to that project - often, the additional work is confirmed after a project has already been created (eg, an event agreement is finalized), and this allows the user to specify the tasks/due dates needed. However, it isn't the cleanest solution.

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Carolanne Mak [CHI closed 25–26 Nov]
Firstly may I say, "UNACCCEEPPTTABBBLEEEE," for no apparently reason.

Secondly, currently we use Wrike Integrate and Workato to do so. Using webhooks to trigger actions when a new project is created we can reorder the tasks as necessary. For example, their order is predefined by a custom field value (hidden to most users but visible to the workato connection account) e.g. 1, 2, 3, 4 in task A, B, C and D respectively; then when C is not added to the project by the requester and the workato recipe is deciding how to order and date the tasks, the lack of task C doesn't effect the order and just brings task D forward. Even dependencies can be automatically added if required.


This (to my knowledge) can't be done by Wrike Automate yet, which is why blueprints were (and are) a great addition to Wrike! But sadly not a full solution - unless you have several for every variant of the project possible (in terms of unnecessary task removal).

 

Hope you found this interesting and have a great week, 
-George

p.s. the alternative is, of course, to have dateless tasks - but this isn't ideal for most use cases (it is for a couple of ours, for example when filtering is done by a calculated custom field of priority instead of the owner defined start date).

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This is helpful, thank you! We use Request Forms all the time, but we haven't dabbled much in blueprint automation yet. I'm excited to give it a try!

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