Question

What Karbon hack have you created that you are most proud of?

  • 18 August 2021
  • 8 replies
  • 783 views

Userlevel 7
Badge +10

I’ll go first - 

I have created a Hidden, Internal contact for myself (I used my role as the name of the contact since using my name would be problematic)

Under this contact I have created several work orders that are not related to clients (internal reporting prep, setting up regular meetings, Newsletter creation...) but are key to me staying on top of my work.

  • The repeating schedule matches the work 
    • I have weekly commitments broken down by task, I keep the status updated on each task so even if I get interrupted I will know where I am at on my weekly commitments.
    • Bi-weekly/Monthly/Quarterly are set up so I don’t drop the ball because time flies.
    • I have them set so the tasks populate 1 day before the start date so it is always a current list of tasks.
    • I link emails and notes as they come in but do not have to shift my focus to that work until it’s time to actually work on it.
  • Some are simply ‘parking lots’ for items I don’t want to lose track of
    • One off projects that may have several emails or notes along the way with a specific due date
    • If I have created a document I make sure to link it in a note so there is no searching when I get back to it, I simply go to my Karbon work order
    • Storage for specific newsletters that I get - no due date but I do add a comment if there is an article or item I want to highlight

This helps keep my Triage and To-do lists under control.

We also have Private, Internal contacts for teams to park their non-client work like meetings, training programs, onboarding new employees, etc.

I am very interested in learning about the hacks you all use,

V


8 replies

Userlevel 5
Badge +5

We do a similar thing - we share lots with the team so don’t have that hidden, although our business planning and direction we want to take the company is under a hidden contact (called Partners in our case - and where I share with the other director).

We have a contact called ‘noticeboard’ where we posted notes that are team based - ie @ mention all and the note might say - hi team, take a look at Karbon’s latest update - I love the ‘x’ feature and think it will be great with clients, what are your thoughts? Let’s talk at team meeting. 

 

or

 

The Gov statutory update is xyz and you’ll find a link here - please can you read it and be aware if clients call 

 

etc.

 

Userlevel 2
Badge +1

One thing we implemented in the beginning was “Ad Hoc” work templates. We only allow our employees to create work items based off of a template. The main reason is because all of our templates have budgets set up. The intention of the ad hoc work items is for stuff that comes to us “on the fly”.

We set up the following -

-Advisory: Ad Hoc

-Assurance: Ad Hoc

-Payroll: Ad Hoc

-Tax: Ad Hoc

Here are the tasks associated with the above ad hoc work items-

-Go to the time & budgets tab and adjust the budget for this work item accordingly. (We put 15 minutes as the starting budget)

-Rename the work item if necessary.

-Email the client that this work item request may result in additional fees. (This gives the client a head’s up that this is not covered under their covered engagement)

-Create the necessary sections/tasks in order to complete this work item.

-Billing notes - Leave comments, notes, insights, etc.

This process has increased our firm’s “out-of-scope” billing. It eliminates the opportunity for employees to book this type of time/work to non-billable or bury the time into a pre-existing work item.

There are times where are employees create ad hoc work items for which we may not bill for, but that is left up to the discretion of the firm’s Operations department/Partners.

 

 

Userlevel 4
Badge +6

@Victoria Peters love it. I do the same thing for every employee when they’re onboarded and myself. I also have hidden or private contacts for:

  • Admin: for me and my partner
  • Recruiting: for… recruiting… that me and my partner can only see
  • HR: for various people ops things that come up
  • Planning: for us to add tasks to and do some planning

Then I have open ones for the team to see as well, such as:

  • Marketing: so they can contribute ideas, too
  • DevOps: for building bots and workflows
  • Team: for anyone to contribute something unrelated to the above

I also created one-time templates for us to use for those ad-hoc tasks that have a client section and internal section so we can still send client tasks on the ad-hoc requests. 

Last but not least, I created a monthly work item on every client to track out-of-scope requests so we can go back each month to review them and see if we want to bill extra for the work.

Userlevel 4
Badge +4

Have you ever heard, "I have a quick question."? If we all had a nickel for every time we heard it, we'd have stacks of gold bars! At CRC, we belovingly refer to them as Q-Squared! 

Under each client timeline, we've created a work timeline called Quick Question 20XX that repeats annually. We track all quick question Q&A under these work timelines. This gives us great analytics to share with our clients when they renew their service plans with us each year. For example, we can celebrate that we replied to 127 quick questions in the past year.…

This makes these efforts very visible and palatable for our clients.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Userlevel 1
Badge

Since I have a largely administrative role within my firm, my Karbon hack is a recurring work with zero tasks that auto populate called “Weekly Internal Admin Tasks (Week Ending MM/DD)” -- the client is the firm and the visibility is open to the whole team. Each week, I “move” any one-off tasks not completed from the previous week and record any new one-off emails, tasks, etc. as they come in. Since I’m hourly, I’ll also track any time spent in triage or on internal calls on this work.

Userlevel 3

How have I only just found these cool hacks?! I’d love to include these in an article I’m writing for Karbon Magazine about creative ways to use Karbon that most people don’t know about.

Is everyone okay if I share these hacks, including your names and firms? You can email me at jessica@karbonhq.com if you want to discuss further. In fact, I might reach out to you for more information at some stage!

Looking forward to hearing from you 😊

Userlevel 7
Badge +13

We have two great hacks that we use:

We have two fake team members that have been created -  Tax Placeholder and Fake Person

  • Tax Placeholder is assigned all repeating work when it is in the planned stage.  We have automators in place to reassign work to a real team member when it hits the ready-to-start date. This keeps the Team’s work tab cleared of clutter.  You can even create a dashboard work view for Tax Placeholder to view planned work.
  • Fake Person is used when a team member leaves the firm.  All their work gets assigned to Fake Person.  This allows us to quickly remove the team member from Karbon.  We can then have a meeting using the dashboard for Fake Person and reassign the work to other team members.  We can check back periodically to see if any repeat work has been missed.

We also have created a few fake clients - Internal Admin Work, Internal Client Work, Internal Meeting, and Internal Training.

  • These are used to create internal work items to help keep the firm running smoothly, track time for things like updating Templates or client work items, track meeting time, and track training.
  •  We each have a personal development work item.  We track our training and Special projects here. This work is assigned to Internal Training and allows our business manager to track this data.
  • We can create custom work items for ourselves to help us complete our specific jobs.  I have a work item to remind me to pull IRS transcripts weekly.  Since this benefits clients, it is assigned to Internal Client Work contact.  I also have a yearly work item to Proforma our clients from one year of Lacerte to the next.  This is assigned to the Internal Admin Work contact since it is for the Firm.

Both of these hacks have been instrumental in our ability to log time, track internal work and get better data on nonbillable work.

Userlevel 3
Badge +4

I’ll go first - 

I have created a Hidden, Internal contact for myself (I used my role as the name of the contact since using my name would be problematic)

Under this contact I have created several work orders that are not related to clients (internal reporting prep, setting up regular meetings, Newsletter creation...) but are key to me staying on top of my work.

  • The repeating schedule matches the work 
    • I have weekly commitments broken down by task, I keep the status updated on each task so even if I get interrupted I will know where I am at on my weekly commitments.
    • Bi-weekly/Monthly/Quarterly are set up so I don’t drop the ball because time flies.
    • I have them set so the tasks populate 1 day before the start date so it is always a current list of tasks.
    • I link emails and notes as they come in but do not have to shift my focus to that work until it’s time to actually work on it.
  • Some are simply ‘parking lots’ for items I don’t want to lose track of
    • One off projects that may have several emails or notes along the way with a specific due date
    • If I have created a document I make sure to link it in a note so there is no searching when I get back to it, I simply go to my Karbon work order
    • Storage for specific newsletters that I get - no due date but I do add a comment if there is an article or item I want to highlight

This helps keep my Triage and To-do lists under control.

We also have Private, Internal contacts for teams to park their non-client work like meetings, training programs, onboarding new employees, etc.

I am very interested in learning about the hacks you all use,

V

@Quynh Ngo This thread has great suggestions (:

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