What clients can expect

19 Jun 2018 by Steven Giannoulis

Unrealistic expectations v3

This week a client asked me for a service level agreement. We’ve produced a few of them over the years but for more technical processes such as website management.

Given that managing expectations is key to good service, I approached the task with a broader client distribution in mind. As a result I’ve been drafting a ‘service promise’ that outlines what clients can expect when they work with us. And – fair’s fair - I’ve also outlined what we expect from them.

What do you think? Does this fairly represent what you would expect from us if you were a client?  What else do you think we should expect from clients?

 Expectations ahead

What you can expect from us:

We will

  • Listen and ask questions to make sure we are clear about your challenge, your audience and what you need.
  • Always deliver creative and innovative ways to engage your audiences and deliver the results you need.
  • Base all our recommendations on good insights, research and/or best practice models and frameworks.
  • Deliver the best solution across multiple mediums including print, on-line and experiential.
  • Give you our best professional advice on what the best course of action may be including challenging you (in a good way) if we think something isn’t right.
  • Utilise your expertise as a subject-matter expert.
  • Collaborate with you, and other parties you work with, to deliver the best results possible.
  • Ensure our work is correct and accurate at all times.
  • Assign you a dedicated relationship/project manager who will be your main point of contact for all dealings with us.
  • Take the time to understand your industry, your business, your objectives and the way you like to work.
  • Celebrate success with you.
  • Always allocate the required resource volumes and skills to your projects to ensure we can deliver what you need within the agreed timeframe and budget.
  • Return your calls, emails and texts within a reasonable timeframe.
  • Provide you with estimates for all work we undertake and outline the assumptions we’ve used in the estimate.
  • Never charge you more than the higher range of the estimate, unless the scope of the project has changed.
  • Notify you if something is out of scope before taking on the additional work. We’ll provide you with estimates for the additional work as soon as we are able to.
  • Deliver detailed project plans for all projects of a significant size, as agreed.
  • Use clear project methodology that facilitates the efficient and effective delivery of projects on time and on budget.
  • Keep you informed of progress against timeframes and budgets and raise any risks which arise that could compromise quality, budget or timeframe, at the soonest opportunity.
  • Work with a network of specialist partners who have the skills and professional practices to help us deliver the outcomes you need.
  • Take responsibility for all freelancers or contractors we bring in to help us deliver your work.
  • Have the appropriate insurances in place for the nature of the work we do for you.
  • Ensure adequate health and safety processes are in place for all work we undertake for you.
  • Make all endeavours to keep material, information and other items provided to us confidential and safe.
  • Notify you as soon as we become aware of any conflict of interest that may arise and propose a course of action to mitigate and manage the conflict to your satisfaction.
  • Have a clear escalation process if you are not happy with some aspect of our work or the way we are working together.
  • Comply with all applicable laws and regulations.
  • Keep good records of all time we spend on your projects.
  • Invoice monthly within eight working days of the end of the month.


What we expect from you in return:

You will:

  • Provide us with reasonable notice of work you intend to give us so we can plan the right level and type of resources for what you need.
  • Be open and forthright with all aspects of your business so that we can tailor our solutions to what’s right for you.
  • Be clear with your objectives and how success will be measured.
  • Give us some leeway to explore ideas and solutions that have the potential to deliver better strategic-creative outcomes.
  • Be reasonable in your expectations: effectively balancing the budget, time and quality trade-offs to achieve the best result possible.
  • Carefully consider all material we provide you before approving it. This helps minimise changes at later stages in the project which may add additional effort.
  • Provide us with the necessary information, content and approvals in a timely and orderly manner that allows us to deliver the agreed specifications, budget and timelines.
  • Keep us informed of any developments that may impact our ability to deliver the agreed specifications, budget and timelines.
  • Give us the opportunity to address any issues or concerns you may have.
  • Give us open and constructive feedback on our work and process so that we can continue to learn and grow as an organisation.
  • Pay us for all work you commission us to do – whether you progress with it or not.
  • Pay our invoices by the 20th of the month following the date of each invoice.

Leave a comment below with your thoughts!