The dashboard in your car relays important information at a glance. You can monitor your speed, check how much gas you have and make sure your engine is not over-heating with minimal effort. The Report & Update Activities in Solve works much the same way.
Throughout the day, you’re busy focusing on managing interactions with prospects and clients, completing existing projects and planning new projects. When you are performing this myriad of activities, it can be difficult to keep track of what you and your team’s priorities and promises are. When you wake up in the morning and need to know where do we need to be and what needs to get done - that’s where the options under Report & Update Activities comes in.
There are four simple reports to help you manage what’s about to happen:
- Next actions assigned to
- Calendar events with
- Follow-ups assigned to
- Opportunities managed by
And three simple reports to help you manage what has happened:
- Activity changes for
- Time tracking for
- Actions logged for
In addition, our Report Builder allows you to quickly pull opportunity and record data directly from your Solve account into Google Sheets to easily generate personalized reports. We’ve provided tutorials for specific examples including Sales Pipeline, Sales Funnel, Sales Team Performance and Quarterly Sales reports. Each report progressively demonstrates the flexibility and usefulness of Solve and Google Sheets, smartly integrated to create practical business dashboards. Simple, flexible, useful.
Next we’ll review the most popular reports …
Next actions assigned to …
To follow along open Solve menu > Report & Update Activities then choose Show next actions for... in the toolbar.
Think of this report like an air traffic controller’s screen; here all your tasks and events are the planes that need to land in a specific order i.e. organized by the date they need to be completed.
Filtering the list to something more manageable
- Keep tabs on the teams priorities by using the filter in the toolbar to sort items by due date and by the individuals or team responsible for the task
- Click on a group heading to collapse or expand a specific group of items
Editing events and tasks in the list
- Double-click in any of the report cells to edit an item, or click on a link to jump to the page the item is related to.
- As you complete items click on the checkbox to the left of the item’s title and it will be marked as completed and removed from this report. The item will also be marked as complete on the page it is related to (it is never deleted).
Calendar events with …
To follow along open Solve menu > Report & Update Activities then choose Show calendar events with… in the toolbar.
The calendar view organizes all events and tasks that have a due date.
Changing the calendar view (daily, weekly, monthly)
Get an at-a-glance monthly view, zero-in on this week’s activities, take a close look at today’s agenda or switch back-and-forth from monthly to weekly to daily, just by clicking.
- You always start out by viewing the next five weeks i.e. month view
- Click once on one of the days of the week to expand the detail for a week
- Click once again on one of the days within that week to extend that specific day’s details
- Click once on the expanded day to return to the month view
Adding new calendar items
Add events that are private to you, shared with your team or more commonly directly linked to a contact, project blog or company.
- Double-click on the calendar in the time and date you wish to add a new item
- Fill out the indicated data (see below)
- A descriptive title for the event, such as "Board Meeting"
- The date(s) the event will occur
- (All day)
- Checking this indicates it is an all day event; un-check to specify a time
- If it is a regular occurrence, select daily, weekly, monthly or yearly to automatically add events to the appropriate future dates
- Location of the event or call information
- Any details you wish to include as background to the session or agenda to follow
- (Show event as)
- Determines who can see and edit the event by setting it to private or shared
- (Show event as, Activity for)
- This one’s important – linking the event to a contact, project blog or company will also show the event in the related pages’s history and place an open link beside the name so that you can jump quickly to the page when the meetings starts, more details on this below
- (If event is linked) Click to open the linked page
- (Internal Attendees)
- The Solve users that are attending the event i.e. the event will appear in their calendar, they will receive notices and reminders
- (External Attendees)
- Any person not using Solve i.e. one of your contacts or anyone with an email address attending the event, they will also receive notices and reminders
- (Send an email notification to all attendees now)
- This one is also important – Check to send a notification email immediately after the event is closed, the email will include a special attachment which the recipient can use to add the event to their own calendar system e.g. Outlook, Google or iCal
- (Send an email reminder to all attendees)
- Will automatically send an email reminding the internal and external attendees of the meeting the specified time before the event is scheduled to begin
- (Keep the event as a next action until someone completes it)
- Normally calendar events just "slip off your radar" after the scheduled date has past, this option allows you to keep the item on your list of things to do i.e. the Next Actions list until it is actually marked as completed
- (Color label)
- Select a label to distinguish activities/events by your organization system such as client, internal, on-site, off-site, etc.
- Click on the X in the top right corner of the event form window to save the changes and close the window.
Linking events to contacts
Link events to contacts and switch from the contact’s record to the event’s record seamlessly
- Create a new event by double-clicking on the calendar in the date and time you wish to add the new event, or open an existing event by clicking-once on the event
- In the “Show event as” field start typing the contact’s name you wish to link to
- Solve will intuitively propose a list of contacts, even before you finish typing
- Select a name from the list
To quickly jump to the linked contact, click the blue underlined “Open” link which now appears next to the contact’s name.
Deleting calendar events
- Click once on the event you want to delete to open it in a form view
- Click on the “Delete” button in the top-right corner of the form window
Rearranging calendar items to different days/times
As your plans change, update your calendar quickly just by clicking and dragging
- Click, drag then drop the item to the desired new location (date and time slot)
Solve in Action
Kyle just got off the phone with Sarah, a potential client, and they agreed to an introductory meeting next week. Kyle creates an event for the meeting in Solve and adds all the attendees: three people from his team and Sarah, the potential client. He then links the event to Sarah’s contact record. Kyle selects the option to notify the attendees of the event, and then moves on with his other work.
Sarah receives Kyle’s notification email about the meeting and clicks on the email’s attachment to automatically add the event to her desktop calendar. Thirty minutes before the meeting, she receives a reminder that the meeting is scheduled to start and commits to attending partially because Kyle appears so organized.
Follow-ups assigned to …
To follow along open Solve menu > Report & Update Activities then choose Show follow-ups assigned to… in the toolbar.
You need to keep tabs on situations to get the outcome you want. Event and Task activities will get them on your radar, but those activities have many options to set and a growing list will quickly clutter up your calendar. The solution is to place the light-weight activity “Queue a follow-up” on a contact, project blog or company page to get the details out of your head and into a shared list that’s easy to manage.
Generally Follow-ups don’t interrupt your day and completing them doesn’t require much preparation or time. At points during the work week that inside voice would say “lets knock off some follow-ups now”. Attentiveness impresses clients and moves the initiatives forward until they pay off.
When it’s time to jump on your Follow-ups open their special report where working through them is a breeze.
- Use the filter in the toolbar to limit the list by who the follow-up is assigned to or when it’s due.
Process your follow-ups and update them as you nudge them closer to the needed outcome.
- Simply double-click on the field you wish to update, make your change then click off the cell to save the change
Quite often it takes a few attempts before you close a business initiative. Follow-ups have a neat feature called “bump”, when clicked will re-queue the Follow-up for a future date, and log the action so you have a history to refer to next time.
Differences between Follow-up, Task and Event activities
|Bump to new date||yes||-||-|
|Email on completion||-||yes||-|
|Mark as complete||yes||yes||optional|
|Shows on Calendar||-||yes||yes|
|Shows on Next Actions||-||yes||yes|
|Shows on Follow-up report||yes||-||-|
|Syncs with Google||-||yes||yes|
|On the Mobile and Tablet Apps||yes||yes||yes|
Opportunities managed by …
To follow along open Solve menu > Report & Update Activities then choose Show opportunities managed by… in the toolbar.
As your team works with your contacts and identifies potential or qualified deals they’ll place the activity “Add a revenue opportunity” on a contact, project blog or company page. This report tallies all of those activities into a pipeline that will ensure you team focuses on closing the deals and helps forecast future revenue.
Opportunities are grouped by who is managing them and what their current status is.
- Use the filter in the toolbar to limit the list by person responsible, closing date or status of the opportunity e.g. won, lost, or in progress
Track revenue opportunities and update them as you inch closer to closing.
- Simply double-click on the field you wish to update, make your change then click off the cell to save the change
The Note field is a great place to document why the opportunity was won or lost. Encourage your team to share experiences so that your entire organization benefits.
The administrator can add additional custom fields to the opportunity to track information specific to your business process.
For more comprehensive and personalized opportunity reports be sure to take a peek at our Solve for Google Sheets add-on.
Activity changes for …
To follow along open Solve menu > Report & Update Activities then choose Show activity changes for... in the toolbar.
The previous reports showed you how to quickly see what needs to happen i.e what you and your team have planned. The “activity changes for” report will tell you what has already happened. It answers questions like “how many calls did we make yesterday/last week and how did they go?”. This gives you a great opportunity to catch up on what’s been going on, identify patterns that can help make your processes more effective and pinpoint specific issues that need attention.
Just like all the other search filters Solve uses a simple sentence to describe what you want it to show you. Just read the phrase to understand what activities are currently being shown in the report and click on the words paired with a drop-down arrow to change the criteria.
You should now have a better understanding of how Solve’s Contacts, Project Blogs and the Report and Update Activities features work together to manage your interactions with your clients and keep your team organized. Next, why not login to your own account and map these features to your day-to-day work processes. If you need additional information about a particular area you can also dig into our feature walkthroughs.