“Our productivity has risen by about 70-90% since we started using Teamwork Projects.”

Ptype UX & Product Design Agency is a full-service UX agency designing and improving products and services through research, problem solving, and prototyping. They use empathy, user-centred design thinking, and maybe a little magic to architect everything that touches the customer or the customer can touch. Ptype also provides UX and Axure training; they’re one of the few Axure-recommended trainers on the planet. Their realistic prototypes exceed expectations and set a new standard.
Debbie Levitt, Founder and CEO, runs Ptype, a creative digital agency often hired by other agencies to do the UX heavy lifting… though they’re available to be hired directly, of course! As they like to say, “The agency you hired hired us.” Agencies and clients like to call Ptype “Mary Poppins”: “We fly in, fix everything, sing a few songs, and move on to help someone else.”

The Challenges

Ptype has been a Teamwork.com customer for many years. The new challenge is finding new ways to use it as it’s updated and improved, and as Ptype grows. Debbie relies on Teamwork Projects to enhance her organization’s daily workload, especially as Ptype expanded into Europe in early 2018. As a UX agency, she has to give her clients the best, easiest-to-use tool that will delight them. She can’t wave the banner of “good user experience” and then ask them to work inside of a poor product or multiple systems stitched together inefficiently. Teamwork Projects provides an all-in-one solution.
Prior to 2018, Debbie and her team were based in America and focused on North American businesses, but they recently expanded, becoming an Italian SRL aimed at Italian, European, and more worldwide business in more languages.
 

The Solution

Ptype uses Teamwork Projects for project management, inviting clients to collaborate, review files, and discuss ideas. They also have clients post written approvals within task files or comments inside Teamwork Projects to remove miscommunication about approval for certain aspects of the project.

“Everything related to a client’s project goes into Teamwork. The contract, brainstorms, pasted images, and call notes. From the first day, every person on the project knows exactly where to find the materials they need.”

Some are shared with the client, and some have the privacy set to internal team members only.
Since a long message thread can sometimes be hard to wade through, Ptype uses Notebooks to summarize where the brainstorm is and immediately convey what the team has decided so far and what decisions are most current. The Notebook can then evolve wiki-style without being a long thread requiring serious reading to find the agreed-upon pieces. 
The Ptype team also uses Teamwork Projects for extensive internal planning. They keep a project called “Ptype Internal.” They have a task list for leads and potential clients, updated with comments as these possible jobs evolve. The zillion variations of the Mission Statement and “What We Do” doc are easily kept in a Teamwork Notebook. They also have Notebooks for staff onboarding and internal how-to’s.
They also keep task lists internally for each project. This allows them to assign things to people who are transparent to the client. The team also has a staff log, and they invoice their hours here. This system allows Ptype to compare the time the team estimated to the actual billable and non-billable time needed. This feedback loop has helped them take their estimating skills from good to excellent, now that they have a clear way to refine and improve their practices.
With clients and staff around the world, Teamwork helps all of the time zones melt away. Ptype feels incredibly productive and efficient thanks to it.

“We were already pretty efficient but Teamwork has made us even more productive!”

 

The Benefits

Teamwork Projects has been the core of all of Ptype’s systems for years because it has simplified every working day. It’s the archive of every moment of the project: decisions, choices, disagreements, and resolutions. Even invoicing has gotten easier now that they have the ability to monitor billable and non-billable hours in one place.

Debbie can’t imagine how much time they’re saving because they’re not having headaches over finding emails or files that are essential to their projects. The team works together much better at every level and no one has to ask, “Who has that file?”

“It’s a fantastic connection and organization tool internally as well as with our clients. It more than pays for itself year after year. Productivity is high, messages are never missed, archives are easy to find… it’s been a total dream!”

Teamwork Projects has allowed Ptype to organize most of its work in Tasks, Messages, Files, and Notebooks, keeping everything in one simple software system, no matter where they work or where their clients are located. Debbie says that clients are also thrilled with the features and the access they have to their project at every level.

“We can’t imagine our process without Teamwork Projects. We’ve been superfans for more than eight years. You couldn’t pay us to use another tool. When I see staff and clients adopt a tool effortlessly without me begging, I know it’s something truly special.”