Are you getting confused on what information you need to collect or don’t regarding your client’s technology assets?  Maybe you are not even collecting this data yet. Take a tour with us as we explore methods and examples of Client Asset Documentation. We’ll speak IT Glue, ConnectWise, Autotask, and a few other systems to share specifics, as well as take questions and answers from the audience.

Video Transcript

Welcome, everybody. We are live in our ITDUG Facebook group, as well as have some live participants in our zoom meeting which you can still register for this topic today will be about client asset documentation. I’m just going to read to you a prepared statement.

Unknown Speaker 0:25
Are you getting confused on what information you need to collect or don’t regarding your clients technology assets, maybe you’re not even collecting this data yet. Take a tour with us as we explore methods and examples of client asset documentation. We’ll talk a little bit about the various systems involved including it glue Connect wise autotask, Confluence, and possibly many, many more.

Unknown Speaker 0:48
I also love interactive, you may interrupt at any time, Veronica will be monitoring messaging, or feel free to just pipe in by unmuting yourself. You may also try Facebook comments on the live feed. Just keep in mind there is a slight delay. So it might take us a minute or two to see that response and maybe another minute or two to get our work done.

Unknown Speaker 1:11
For those of you who might be tuning in from elsewhere, this is hosted and put on by the it documentations users group on Facebook, you can see the various URLs there. The Facebook pages live, posting helping peer to peer help. And on our website at it guys webinar is all the past webinars and word this and will be posted later this week.

Unknown Speaker 1:36
It was founded by Tracy harden, who could not be here today. But she owns next century technologies and MSP and Kentucky found in 2001. She founded this group may in 2018, to help her figure out how to use it glue. And August of that year, we opened it up to all platforms. And she invited me to help her with the group.

Unknown Speaker 1:57
We then quickly hit 1000 numbers 2000 members note the dates is February 2021 will be over 3000 because we’re at 29 something right now.

Unknown Speaker 2:08
So keep inviting people because the more people that are joined, the more people who can ask you good questions or answer your good questions.

Unknown Speaker 2:17
I’m Alan.

Unknown Speaker 2:20
It’s always fun to talk about myself, I can go on for ages. But the basic points are, I’ve been doing it a very long time, I have also owned an MSP like many of you guys, we were able to sell it for a profit at work of two other msps and leadership after that, which we had great success again. I’m also yes implementer. And I founded Eureka process, where we are working day in and day out with it business owners to help them with business processes, profits operations. And frankly, it’s 80% documentation.

Unknown Speaker 2:55
So that’s where a lot of these experiences come from. So first a poll. What do you think of when we say it documentation? And I’ll put that on the screen in a moment. But the question again, is, what do you think of when we say it documentation, you can text your input the number on your screen. 205-883-8760 I’m trying to be all adjustable here. So I’ll say one more time to 058838760 or all of it folks probably have already quickly put this in there have a swift, enter code 14795. That’s swift polling, comm 14795. We’re gonna take a quick look at the live poll to see what people think of when they see this.

Unknown Speaker 3:44
So you’re gonna see some of these numbers change as people weigh in. I did pre populate a few of these based on asking a similar question earlier this week in the IT dog Facebook forum. So I see the word SLP and procedures is quite popular.

Unknown Speaker 4:01
I’m also seeing the word password in there a few times credentials as a related assets code comments off very good, how to fix things, network diagrams. So I think the moral of the story is, we think of a lot of different things when we say it documentation, perhaps us why there’s so many members in it, because we’re all thinking different things. I know I’ve seen people coming here for very unique asks that I don’t typically think of because I’m in the IT services space, and maybe they are coders or in corporate departments.

Unknown Speaker 4:34
So we have to get a little more specific and don’t wait.

Unknown Speaker 4:39
I have changed this number for at least three times this week. And it’s been anywhere from three to 12 when I’m picking this. So I’ve tried to categorize this better and get more consistent. The four types of documentation would love your feedback and how you’d categorize these differently. One, internal processes. This is

Unknown Speaker 5:00
How to open the office how to put in tickets as an internal process, how to say pizza request, that’s a fun one. You might also have a client facing variation of that. But my favorite is how to submit tickets, that would be a client facing internal process.

Unknown Speaker 5:16
I think a lot of us thought of technical processes in the previous slide as well. So you have the technical processes, your team’s your textphone, how to solve issues, you might also have some for all your clients like, this is how you reset your password. Or maybe even a client specific technical process like this is how you set up outlook on your phone with your settings in it. So that would be a client facing specific technical process.

Unknown Speaker 5:44
Even your work notes and your time entries, and your PSA is a type of documentation. It’s your work history documentation. There’s a lot of clues there when you’re troubleshooting problems based on.

Unknown Speaker 5:56
And then what we’re here to talk about today is client asset documentation. This is the inventory of things, both those real such as hardware. And those a little less tangible, such as software, network diagrams, etc.

Unknown Speaker 6:15
I do include passwords as a type of client asset documentation, even though they could perhaps have their own category.

Unknown Speaker 6:24
So step one, in documenting anything is to know thyself know what, you know, therefore know what you don’t know. So we have to document our documentation.

Unknown Speaker 6:38
I have four slps, I recommend for this. The first is the process process.

Unknown Speaker 6:46
This is a far better than when I first created it in 2004. Back then it was the procedure procedure, I still have saved you two syllables, you’re welcome.

Unknown Speaker 6:56
The process process is basically what do we write based on the four types of documentation went for before? How do we write it? And exactly where do we start, maybe you use a documentation system like SharePoint or it glue Confluence, there’s a bunch. But no matter what system you use, if you have a clear directions for everybody, and how we’re going to store things, it becomes that much more structured for you. It makes it easier to use

Unknown Speaker 7:25
naming standards, everything has to have a name, so we can quickly find it. When I think naming centers at this level, I’m really thinking equipment, because if I want to look up that firewall, I want a naming center. So I can type that naming standard in and find that customers firewall at that site every time without having to sift through a bunch of folders.

Unknown Speaker 7:47
Same for passwords. Passwords typically have some sort of Name field, how do I know I want to find the Active Directory domain admin on that user? Well, if it’s called the same thing for each place, I can always know where to find it. So we should come to an agreement as a culture as a company on what that standard is. Those three SNPs

Unknown Speaker 8:08
are actually going to be the topic of next month’s webinar. Because this month, we’re going to talk about a document that we happen to have called d 05. d for documentation. Fifth document we wrote on asset documentation where we store everything we know in our company, about the assets we document.

Unknown Speaker 8:30
So what our client assets let’s give some examples here. Site summary, new user PC setup, applications, remote access domain, email virtualization land, subnets, VLANs, nazz, security standards, printers, IP addresses, shares, wireless and so much more. I’m sure you guys can think of a bunch more.

Unknown Speaker 8:53
And the last topic, the last pay to play that would we be remiss not to cover? Before we document anything

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is necessary and sufficient. Every piece of data that we decide to record or not to record must pass the test necessary and sufficient.

Unknown Speaker 9:16
I’ll give you some better more specific examples you can use to understand this is a very important concept. I was the professor I said write this one down.

Unknown Speaker 9:25
Will this data ever be referenced again, let’s make sure we don’t get in the habit of document everything just because it’s a really hard culture to enforce. It feels like busy work. So is it really necessary to write this down? Are we ever going to reference it again?

Unknown Speaker 9:42
When will someone reference this? And another way I like to ask that question is what are they working on when they do reference it?

Unknown Speaker 9:51
Maybe it’s a silly example. But let’s say that this piece of documentation you wanted to document whenever they use it, they’re going to be inside of

Unknown Speaker 10:00
Live and working firewall? Well, if they’re inside live and working in firewall, they already have a good bit of information in what they’re looking at. So how much documentation do they need? If it’s already there? Because it’s live and working? Maybe, again, silly example. But think about the things that already exist, where they’re at, to help you inform what what is actually necessary for where they’re at?

Unknown Speaker 10:23
Is this documentation stored somewhere else already? And if so, maybe we can link to it, instead of recreating the wheel, we definitely don’t want double entry.

Unknown Speaker 10:34
Nobody wants to work more than they have to the easier we make this to do, the easier it’ll get done.

Unknown Speaker 10:40
Here’s a fun one. What should they already know.

Unknown Speaker 10:45
There is a a pendulum that normally swings or consulting clients from no documentation to document everything. And then people feel like robots, we’ve got to leave room for people to do what they’re good at. Maybe that’s troubleshooting, maybe that’s resolving a specific technical matter.

Unknown Speaker 11:04
Another absurd example is, you know, you don’t have to describe to them to right click on stuff, they should already know these things as you’re hired highly compensated technicians.

Unknown Speaker 11:16
They just need to know roughly where to go to leave the room to be them.

Unknown Speaker 11:21
I have a backup one actually. I also have a propensity not to include screenshots, as I believe that our technicians roughly know where things are located at when giving instructions. And it also saves me from having to redo the screenshots with minor updates the software, there’s always exceptions, reasons they need a confirmation, specialized software, etc. But I do minimize screenshots.

Unknown Speaker 11:44
Is this documentation more easily referenced somewhere else? Maybe there’s an example where Google is actually more up to date, the documentation could ever be depending on the situation and sources, of course. So again, just one more way to challenge the question isn’t necessary.

Unknown Speaker 12:04
Okay, so based on where they’re at, when they ask access this information, what questions are they likely to need answered?

Unknown Speaker 12:12
I love firewalls as an example. But in my documentation, I hope I have a backup config somewhere else. I don’t need every single setting in the firewall. Typically, what is the basics of the problem? get it set up, such as the LAN IP address, local IP address, and who the heck’s doing DHCP?

Unknown Speaker 12:34
And another fun one is the is it always, I kind of always say that in the attitude of digit die?

Unknown Speaker 12:43
If you’re creating some sort of documentation structure of a lot of clients using it glue, and if you’re using SharePoint, don’t worry about creating fields or questions or prompts for things that aren’t, don’t always need to be answered.

Unknown Speaker 12:59
One minor examples in the olden days, you would ask for, hey, what is the windows license key, the five by five numbers. And you could actually put some structure around that some

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Data Reference checking, validate data validation.

Unknown Speaker 13:15
But these days, the way things have licensed I’ve gotten so complex, I have

Unknown Speaker 13:21
intentionally given up that structure. Now I have a text box that says, How is this thing licensed with instructions on the types of input to get it that way? If it’s a five by five code, or if it’s the QuickBooks

Unknown Speaker 13:34
if it’s an application code registration code, two different size numbers? Or do you have to log in with a user and password to authenticate

Unknown Speaker 13:42
too many options to structures, I give them free rein. So don’t build your documentation for for client assets around exceptions, only the rule.

Unknown Speaker 13:56
So let’s dive in.

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I’m going to give you my favorite first example of a client asset.

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And I’ll start with a story.

Unknown Speaker 14:09
And my team is on the call. Brooke said she might jump in on some of these things as she gets passionate about this stuff as I do sometimes.

Unknown Speaker 14:16
Adams excited about this stuff, as well. So we’ll see what happens if we have any good feedback here. I was service manager and we had this pretty good sized firm during the company at the time they were had become our largest MRR account.

Unknown Speaker 14:32
And I swear we were about to get fired because we could just we could not set up a new user with a new PC the way she wanted it right the first time. We just couldn’t get it right. She was frustrated. So I was like, Okay, look.

Unknown Speaker 14:46
Let’s go in and write down generally what you need. Let’s agree ahead of time, what you need, and we’re going to deliver that to you and you’re going to tell us any exceptions. So after that meeting, we actually built three templates that I like

Unknown Speaker 15:00
labeled new PC users that have finance doctors, nurses.

Unknown Speaker 15:05
And then she submitted a ticket and says, Hey, I want to use this is for a doctor.

Unknown Speaker 15:11
And I know we agreed on a set of applications, but I wanted to remove this one application. All she had to write, we were able to deliver the first time. So this became an important piece.

Unknown Speaker 15:21
The reason I like this one first is because a new PC just sort of connects to a lot of other things, you can get a feel for how this connects to other client assets, we can do linking.

Unknown Speaker 15:33
Obviously, there’s a name.

Unknown Speaker 15:37
Right? Write your rules down in your in your document. These are a five client asset documentation. However, this can frequently follow either a naming standard, if you have that, or for the new PC user setup case. It’s really just more of a generic name for the template, maybe this is client, new user template, or maybe it’s client user template, finance, sales. And then whatever the case is, I don’t recommend you have too many. Everybody should have one and a few will have two or three probably.

Unknown Speaker 16:11
All right, what applications do we feel are required in almost every case? So if you forget to tell me assume these applications are going to be installed?

Unknown Speaker 16:22
Likewise, I like to have a secondary list of optional applications these applications might be worth asking about, because some of them do get it but I wouldn’t assume that without being told. Maybe this even prompts me as the technician or the order taker to ask Hey, did you did you need office 365 for this one.

Unknown Speaker 16:44
Depending on who you are, and how strict you are about 100%, MSP you might have the question is does do their setups get our RMM agent? nice, easy checkbox, perhaps.

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What printers do they need access to?

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What data? Do they access to?

Unknown Speaker 17:05
What wireless networks need access to any security groups, you’re beginning to get a feel distribution groups? What remote access profile might they have if you’re not unified across?

Unknown Speaker 17:16
Maybe they have some very special things with the email instructions. I’ve had several that I’ve said, everybody in this template needs to be added to these four distribution groups. And I want their email forwarded to the boss store and forward.

Unknown Speaker 17:32
whatever it is they and are we supposed to automatically assume these types of users need to set up on their phone? Do they take work home with them afterwards?

Unknown Speaker 17:42
Your list can change, you have to ask, Is this necessary. And this is this sufficient for your case.

Unknown Speaker 17:51
And what I like about using this one as a starter, I use the word tag. That’s how it glue does it. But the concept is okay, you have applications where you probably also have applications or client assets. So you can link to existing data about that. And this can just be a list. So all the ones that say tags can link to existing detailed documentation on those pieces.

Unknown Speaker 18:16
And maybe your group policies are set up so tight that things like printers, data, wireless security, distribution groups, maybe those things take care of themselves. And if that’s the case, it’s not necessary, pull it out of here. And the smaller list can be sufficient for everything you need to create new PC users. So I’m going to

Unknown Speaker 18:39
I’m going to show you how I document this and it’s super crazy simple.

Unknown Speaker 18:46
I literally write in my case, I use Word and SMB. Or you can put this in your documentation system as well.

Unknown Speaker 18:55
I write the name of the asset at the top, I create a bulleted list of all the fields and parentheses. I’m just writing what type of field I want it to be if I have structured data, and then in a sub bullet, I answer questions. And I’d see glue. This could be a hint field, an auto task and connect West configurations. Maybe this is a default field to help you understand what you’re going to replace. But anytime somebody comes to me with a question about what should I write here, or what about this special case, I write the answers in this document.

Unknown Speaker 19:32
So that when I’m training the next new guy, those questions are already answered in this document. For the most part, new guys are going to read this and gals.

Unknown Speaker 19:45
I don’t expect a whole lot of my existing staff to reread these once they’ve been introduced to it.

Unknown Speaker 19:52
Another powerful concept behind having this document pre written especially if you’re in the middle of transitioning

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This is everything that is in your client asset documentation document

Unknown Speaker 20:06
is stuff we have decided on, we have decided this is what’s necessary and sufficient to fill out anything not on this list, we have not decided yet.

Unknown Speaker 20:18
I know in some popular platforms, there’s lots of templates that come people fill in the templates, because they’re there. And maybe you don’t want to stop that. And that’s okay. But you can tell them, if it’s in this d 05, client asset documentation document

Unknown Speaker 20:34
that it has been decided and it better be there.

Unknown Speaker 20:40
One thing that I started doing with some of the msps that I’m working with is we gather this data. Now, when we do a client on board,

Unknown Speaker 20:49
we have a document that sort of a template that we generated that has these various things on it. And we start asking these questions out of the gate. Because to me, a new user setup or a new PC setup is one of the ways that you can really shine as an MSP. Because it’s an opportunity, somebody gets a shiny brand new box, and it works out of the gate, they log in, and everything that they need is there. Or a new person, this is a new employee for a particular company, and what better way to really show who you are as an IT firm, than to set up everything accurately, the person sits down on their first day, they log in, they’re able to work, everything is there, there’s no hiccups. I mean, really, you know, makes the thing I mean, transitioning to a job is already stressful. So the last thing you want to do is have our it firm be a hindrance to that. So this is a really good one, I think to refine and ensure that there are like no gaps, which is why we started doing it in several places in the onboarding process to let them know that we want to make this a number one priority, because we want your users to be able to work when they get a new machine or you hire new people. So it’s it’s so important to us that we are now gathering this data during a client onboarding.

Unknown Speaker 21:58
I mean, even that one example I gave broken, you’re with me during that example.

Unknown Speaker 22:03
It was a client changer, you’re talking about complete attitude shift, even in other areas of service is because we listen to a need, and we solved it permanently going forward. And for that particular clients, it was it was a very large client. So they had you know, they were getting new computers all the time and hiring new people. And it just I mean, not only did it streamline it for them, but it also streamlined it for us. Another thing that we did for that particular client was the PC setup, Allen basically gave her that same sort of choice, a computer’s computer, you know, a is like you know, the top elite C level computer, B or C, and don’t we wrote, we didn’t, you know, you can’t always sell the same computer every single time. But you know, these are the minimum specs that you need to have, it makes it easier for the client versus having to every single time Look at all the specs on quote or approve it. Or she just says, Hey, this is a doctor PC, and we go order the doctor PC. So it’s streamlined it for that that, you know, client to make things easier for them. Because I don’t want to make it difficult for them to ask for a new person to get hired. And I definitely don’t want to make it difficult for them to buy something from me. So just giving them some choices and saying, hey, you want computer A, B or C, and you just check the box and keep going. It made it easier for a lot of people.

Unknown Speaker 23:17
Good, thank you. I’ll also take a moment. Our next slides is actually we’re going to dive into a another flexible asset, and then talk about how to roll this out into your organization.

Unknown Speaker 23:30
Before we do q&a, but if anybody has any questions at this point, just one second Veronica for a second, do we have chats or questions anywhere? Nope, we’re all good, we can continue. Alright. So

Unknown Speaker 23:42
as I mentioned, the new user PC setup connects to everything. And I feel like probably the next most populous thing that we do is listing all of their applications. So let me just give us some examples of some things that us and our clients have come up with.

Unknown Speaker 23:58
To name locations, yes, a name. Perhaps you need to track who the vendor is, especially what your support options are. Maybe this is simple as a text field. Or maybe it links to a company and your PSA or your documentation system.

Unknown Speaker 24:12
Application credentials again, maybe you have a separate password management system. So a link to that. So whoever is working on the application can go straight to the credentials and get the surf.

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Where does the application live? Of course, application server these days

Unknown Speaker 24:28
could be the cloud, or Azure or some other places. So you have a little more creative, even though it could be a tag to an existing configuration.

Unknown Speaker 24:38
Where how do we install the software? Do we have to go online somewhere? Is it in a file server somewhere? How do we do it? And Brooke, you had an example you said regarding an insulin location. Photo recently, we have a client that I’m consulting with how we’ll mess up. We had a client that had it was cloud based but they had purchased and we would migrate

Unknown Speaker 25:00
A server. So we needed to migrate some of the applications. I’m part of the documentation that I always preach is that it’s living and breathing it once you get it down, that’s not the end of the road. Every time something changes, something updates, it’s on the tech, it’s on that person to go make sure that the documentation reflects that. And the installer location had changed where we had stored that. So I had a kid that was working on this project, and I just needed him to install some applications moving from point A to point B, okay, fine. Um, he used the wrong installer. Because what was listed in this client’s documentation, which happened to be it glue said these are where the installers are at. So those are the ones that he used it then install these applications on the wrong drive letter. And this particular application required a specific drive letter to make it work. This was a project we got it done everything, okay, great. Three months later, they don’t see any data because the data is in the wrong place, we didn’t point it to the right direction, because we use the wrong installer. So therefore, now I’ve got to go back and eat some of the time and money on that project, because we did not install it in the right place. So this might have been a case that somebody updated the application and didn’t look at the existing notes. We the person that changed where the installers were at the basically the dot txt files of, Hey, this is where that changed. And we did not update the documentation. Alright, less than someone’s head and that that is in the you know what?

Unknown Speaker 26:27
neck, but it’s in the neck, somewhere in the pocketbook. Because we have to write off, we have to write off some things, which is never, never a good thing. Very good. I mentioned licensing notes previously, that when it comes to licensing, I tend to make a little more freeform, and a little bit of trust in my text to know what we need to properly license the software.

Unknown Speaker 26:51
I love the fact that I let PowerPoint, pick the icons for this. It’s all the word notes, a musical notes, that’s exactly what he’s talking about.

Unknown Speaker 27:00
Perhaps you need to know where this application is installed, because you’re either counting licenses or some specialized machine, perhaps not if it’s not necessary for your applications.

Unknown Speaker 27:11
But don’t use it

Unknown Speaker 27:14
and expiration date.

Unknown Speaker 27:17
Not if you’re in a structured system, such as your PSA it color pass portal, expiration is actually a special field. And what I recommend in those advices, don’t fill it in unless it matters. Meaning if some action has to happen, because of an expiration date, let’s fill it in and all almost all the tools that I’ve seen that have the special field, you can create workflows that trigger on Hey, 30 days before expiration do x.

Unknown Speaker 27:47
So usually I have that in my D 05. document asset documentation. And it says

Unknown Speaker 27:54
when and when not to fill an expiration date because of those workflows, and automations. That’s incredibly helpful for sales. And if you’re doing quarterly business check ins, things like that, so that you can have those items in there, if you’re especially if you’re trying to help them get a budget prepared for the year, because a lot of times they don’t remember. So you need to that will be helpful to make sure that you know what those licensing fees are. So you can help them prepare their budget for the year. I’ll keep repeating it necessary and sufficient if it’s not necessary, let’s not create noise because it happens to have an expiration.

Unknown Speaker 28:27
Think about this from the tech side. But a lot of these things, like I said, the expiration date that’s gonna touch sales and account management. So everything that you’re putting here can have far reaching tentacles that can go help lots of different people in the in the company. So you know, keep that in mind that, you know, when you’re documenting these things, other people might be able to use that documentation to help them do their job better. So it’s not just tech stuff, as it should, as it should, especially if you have a culture of documentation.

Unknown Speaker 28:55
So creating your own asset or client asset documentation document.

Unknown Speaker 29:02
To get this culture of documentation, it doesn’t happen by accident. And it definitely doesn’t happen by yelling or dictating. And some of you might be nodding your heads going, Yeah, I know that now.

Unknown Speaker 29:13
So it doesn’t matter where you are, how much documentation you have, at some point, you’ve got to stop and start documenting your documentation. So if you already are using several client assets, and you have some templates together and how it works, what you’ve never decided on exactly how it should work. You never got the whole team involved. Well take a moment grab one of those and put them into a document says okay, this is decided, are we still clear in this is everything necessary and sufficient. And what I like to do is grab a small committee together, maybe it’s a short time committee, a couple of representative folks if you have a decent size, maybe you have a tier one, those who need the documentation and a tier three those who know the documentation

Unknown Speaker 30:00
Get them together and discuss every field, every client asset, is it necessary and sufficient for us to both do our jobs.

Unknown Speaker 30:10
And by having that discussion, they are invested and involved in the process, they’re going to hold their peers accountable, because hey, I helped create this. This is what we decided, this is why we decided it. And the ones we’ve gotten to and decided on our in our asset documentation lists to go check that out, and help me out with it.

Unknown Speaker 30:30
And most importantly, I must be frequently referenced. And I don’t mean, hey, guys go into documentation.

Unknown Speaker 30:39
Or every morning, go read this document, go read that document. What I mean is, we have to use it, we have to have, again, that culture of following the process, reading the documentation. And the way that I do that is anytime an example of something didn’t happen, we tie it back to our documentation in our in our corrective action against coaching as a reminder, whatever it is, we don’t say, Hey, this is the way you do it. We say, Hey, this is the way we wrote down what we’re doing. Do you agree that this is corrected, we need to change it? Alright, let’s follow this way.

Unknown Speaker 31:15
Anytime you hate to use this word, let’s say you have to discipline an employee, there should only be two reasons to discipline an employee Failure to follow core values, and a failure, failure to follow process.

Unknown Speaker 31:32
And the only way you can say they’re not doing those things is by to reference, which one of those things is not doing and which one? And that’s a great coaching moment, because then people begin to see you answer every question with, Alright, here’s the process, or here’s the client asset you didn’t document. Here’s where you had to reference it to get your job, right, you didn’t do that. And now you see the results. If you do that every time consistently, you’re going to create that culture of frequently representative documentation, it can’t be superficial, it has to be a part of the process.

Unknown Speaker 32:05
It has to be how’d you get work done. In particular documentation platform, it glue you can, there’s a score that goes with each type of documentation that you have, if you create a document, you get X amount of points, you know, you update a document, etc. I’ve done things before where I give small, small monetary gift cards, I’ve sent cookies before, things like that whoever ends up in first place, we had a contest we ran for a month, and every single week, whoever was in first place, got to gift cards, or got some, you know, some some cookies, or sweet treats or whatever, to just sort of really encourage on a positive note, hey, you know, let’s get out there and get this stuff done. And you know, make sure every single time to work on a ticket that you’re you know, looking at nslp that might be associated with it, make sure you’re checking that client’s documentation, whatever assets might be out there, if you’re installing some software or creating a new user, just really encourage it on a positive note, rather than just constantly trying to hit one hammer the hammer. Another fun game, it’s less competitive, but still fun as the Easter egg hunt. You could choose to tell them it exists or not. But you plant an Easter egg in one of the client assets that are supposed to reference frequently. Like, hey, contact so and so tell them you saw this Easter egg and you win a free gift enterprise.

Unknown Speaker 33:25
out there, you know, when somebody claims it, remove the easter egg, put it somewhere else, until that’s part of your culture. That can be a fun game, especially if you don’t announce it the first few times just do it. See how long it takes us only to reference it. It’s a lot of fun.

Unknown Speaker 33:43
Alright, so we have this concept of Okay, we get to document all this stuff. We get a test necessary and sufficient? How the heck are we going to get started? How the heck are we going to get all this data entered, there’s so much to catch up on to fix the update to start.

Unknown Speaker 34:00
So as I hinted at before, I would form a committee, not the whole company, not the leadership team. Pick a guy or two if you’re a five person team, fine, just have two people represent the populace to get decisions made faster, consider deciding necessary and sufficient.

Unknown Speaker 34:18
Pick one type of client asset

Unknown Speaker 34:22
make all the decisions on what data you need necessary and sufficient and then have either one person

Unknown Speaker 34:30
sorry, have either each person of the committee do it or have one person, go record. One asset. Let’s say you pick firewalls, you decided everything and thinks this resubmission is a great now go record client ABCs firewall, just one.

Unknown Speaker 34:46
We’re going to go through the work. They’re going to come back and go who that was way too much information. Do we really need this? Or actually we have a separate they’re going to have feedback. And that committee should take that feedback, improve the process.

Unknown Speaker 35:00
And then we’re going to expand our vaccine trials, we’re going to expand our asset trials, right? have everybody on the service team, anybody who would ever have a reason to document something? Try one of these, maybe we have a lot and they can pick one. Or maybe you have to assign you to client B to client C, have them do one with the purpose of giving you feedback, and help teach them necessary and sufficient.

Unknown Speaker 35:28
Take that feedback and improve it again.

Unknown Speaker 35:32
At this point, I like to call it done. But then the last question remains. Alright, what about all the other assets we have this type, we have to get the rest documented now that it’s good.

Unknown Speaker 35:44
There are two options. One I prefer what I did I prefer the first is create a project ticket however you do it, and invest the time to catch up. I do not like this method.

Unknown Speaker 35:56
I don’t like documenting stuff that I might never get to because the client never calls or whatever the case is. So why document everything.

Unknown Speaker 36:04
I prefer to do it as you go. I have seen a great exception or two. I had a client says, Look, I know what you said, Alan, but I need to get all the internet circuits documented, because that’s the number one call we get at 3am.

Unknown Speaker 36:20
And we’re scrambling to get it and we never know who’s next. So they created a project, they got all those done first, it did make Hong Kong that much easier.

Unknown Speaker 36:30
And then everything else when they touched it, they fixed it. That was the rule once everybody on the team had a chance to have say so they’ve had a chance to test it, use it, read the client asset documentation document.

Unknown Speaker 36:43
They were invested, they knew it was there. If you see it, you fix it.

Unknown Speaker 36:52
All right, now we turn this over to you guys. We can answer

Unknown Speaker 36:56
any questions you have. If for some reason that we don’t have enough questions to fill up any time I have one more bonus asset at the end of the presentation after our outsourced slides. Just as a quick share,

Unknown Speaker 37:11
do we have any questions or anybody who wants to share how they do things? It’s a totally open forum.

Unknown Speaker 37:23
I kinda want to do that.

Unknown Speaker 37:25
Who was that man on the moon guy? Andy?

Unknown Speaker 37:30
Andy, somebody came out Saturday Night Live, and he stared at the camera for a minute.

Unknown Speaker 37:36
all nervous looking.

Unknown Speaker 37:39

Unknown Speaker 37:41
Brooke, Adam, would you like to share any stories?

Unknown Speaker 37:45
I was having flashbacks with that new user PC setup. We had a client that was a nonprofit, and they had users coming in and out all the time. They probably had about 120 users. And we would do on average, like five new users a week sometimes like it was crazy. There would be have temps coming in and going out. And it was it was just kind of chaotic. So at some point, we did kind of say what do you need on every single PC, let’s get a document together. And we started a version of it version one. And I think when I left around like version 9.153, or something like that, it had been changed so many times. But it was really accurate to what their current set of one is, what everything that they needed for those specific users. And we could go back and reference it. So it helped us save time on those setups, it helped us with the client relationships, we could go and talk to them and say, what was done well and not done well. And we can revise our documentation, it helped keep our hours for those setups low because we were doing so many of them. So we didn’t want those hours to get out of control

Unknown Speaker 38:55
pretty quickly, which would make our agreement not profitable, just in your user PC setups. So

Unknown Speaker 39:03
my experiences with the msps that I consult with now there is a direct correlation. In my experience with efficiency and resolution time on tickets with clients that use heavy documentation encouraged that practice, they have a culture of documentation versus the clients that I have that do not. I’m also, I’m a big believer that if you can pull something in via some sort of in connectwise, type subtype an item, and you can link documentation slps. For that it helps to reduce the amount of time that it’s going to take to resolve a ticket. I’m also big on it because it helps new people when you onboard a new employee, if you have that documentation there so that they’re not just trying to figure out how all of this works. And you can help sort of give them a push in the right direction. It’s great for new employees to be able to drive that as well and then I also do a lot in

Unknown Speaker 40:00
on new employee onboarding, I dedicate a good chunk of time on a ticket on a new client and new employee ticket to go over the documentation and run through all of these things and how we do them. You know, if there’s a naming standard, you know how to find it, which processes to start with, how to go through all of those things, how to reference them, all of that, I think, is an extremely important when you’re onboarding new employees, because documentation is one of the things that I get asked about a lot. When we’re doing some of the screening stuff that we do. They ask, do you guys use documentation, because everybody knows how hard it is to start somewhere new. And if you don’t have if you don’t come into a company that has that, it makes it really, really hard to be successful. Quickly, it can take a long time. And it just it makes for a tough uphill battle for a new employee, you don’t have that

Unknown Speaker 40:47
makes expand that one topic you mentioned, we’re intimately familiar with it. But maybe our audience does not have a concept that she was referring to is is there a way to get the right technical documentation and perhaps the right client asset documentation in front of your technicians the moment it’s, it’s needed. In our case, we’ve done some automations, and a couple of different PSAPs, where as soon as you maybe the configuration item in your PSA has a link that I can fish, or maybe it is the documentation, which could which can be great as well. Or if you’re doing a technical process, which is outside of this scope, maybe that technical process, because the ticket is coated with a certain issue or sub issue type or subtype, or however your PSA does it, we can automatically add the right link in your documentation system to what they need to follow down, it’s right there in the ticket once again, they click it and they’re there. So anything you can do to prevent searching, versus giving them explicit directions is great.

Unknown Speaker 41:49
A relevant example like that today, but it wasn’t just for new staff, it was for their overnight supplemental staff. So they get an alert in the middle of the night. What do they do? What would your staff do? So they were working on documentation specifically for them, because they won’t have anybody to ask in the middle of the night, they need to rely on that documentation needs to be good.

Unknown Speaker 42:11

Unknown Speaker 42:13
And Adam, I love it. When you say stuff like that, and I have no idea who you’re talking about, I guess teams just doing work. And I can good presentation, this is great. I will tell you some more feedback about naming standards, naming conventions, how you’re going to name these documents, is also really important. Otherwise, you’re just going to end up going through folder structures, which is not the most ideal way to make this happen. So having a standard way to name the documents, and then teaching that to new people and to old people as well as a constant refresher, so that you can easily search for what you need. Because there’s nothing worse than having, you know, a metric ton full of documentation and I can’t find it. I’m searching, searching, searching, I don’t know what it’s called, I don’t know the name of it. If your documentation platform doesn’t pull metadata, it can be extremely difficult to find the right documents or the right client asset to use. If I don’t know what it’s called, and we don’t have a standard naming process yet, we’re gonna we’re gonna share a lot more of that next month. So for those who might be catching this webinar, beforehand,

Unknown Speaker 43:17
come with your questions and maybe the way you’re doing things or we’re gonna show the way we’re doing things because we want to create a proper structure on where we store things and come to that agreement and, and talk about solving some of these problems that booked us mentioned.

Unknown Speaker 43:32
So we have hit our next

Unknown Speaker 43:36
topic will be figured out what it is documenting your documentation, we saw a an opportunity to fill out the rest of this presentation with this information. So we’ll be glad to share that with you next month. Feel free to participate.

Unknown Speaker 43:50
We do have additional resources and I will still take questions even after this we have a few more minutes left. Our website Eureka process like calm and our brand new website, the Eureka That is our membership based community we have separated into its own domains to give us more room for menu items. It hasn’t really been upgraded besides content at this time. We just got them separated last week. You’re welcome to contact me directly informations on the screen. And if you’re watching this elsewhere, or from our website,

Unknown Speaker 44:24
category, slash it, Doug, this is how you can join the Facebook conversation slash groups slash it Doug.

Unknown Speaker 44:32
For those still tuned in, I have just one more bonus asset for you.

Unknown Speaker 44:39
This is a copy and paste from our client asset document virtualization. I’ve have seen a fair amount of difference on how our clients will document this this is certainly one example.

Unknown Speaker 44:56
Some will want to know where the virtualized

Unknown Speaker 45:00
server is stored at. Some people have gotten a little iffy on even recording the host anymore because many people have very fluid virtualization that can bounce from host to host. So it’s a host group perhaps.

Unknown Speaker 45:14
For those who don’t demand everybody be on one single virtualization platform they might have a couple of years since then people know if you’re looking for a Hyper V host, or VMware host, for example,

Unknown Speaker 45:24
exactly who that host is, which virtual machines might exist?

Unknown Speaker 45:30
And how the heck do we manage this thing? what’s what’s that domain, to login to, or application to lunch, to manage it. So that’s just one example.

Unknown Speaker 45:42
Your client assets documentation is can be anywhere from 10 ish to 2030 items. If you get much deeper than that, maybe you’re documenting too much just because we got to be able to find what we need when we need it and not waste your time documenting stuff that we will never reference again.

Unknown Speaker 45:59
It’s always a fine balancing act.

Unknown Speaker 46:03
That’s what we have for now.

Unknown Speaker 46:05

Unknown Speaker 46:09

Unknown Speaker 46:11
this full document is available on our community site de recomienda comm

Unknown Speaker 46:18
our free trial is going away, but currently, it’s still active. So I do encourage you if you’re watching this live, if you want to pop into the rica community comm register for an account, go grab this document, I will not be offended. If you want to cancel afterwards. I’ll set a small tear, but I won’t be offended I certainly your prerogative to try it out if we don’t have other value in there for you. And the biggest value I see in the rich community calm is actually our monthly community conference call where the US fire store, try to hop on and answer all one on one questions about anything you see in the site or elsewhere. Most people who attend that find that the biggest value of their community.

Unknown Speaker 47:05
So with that being said, we’re going to practice the method of signing off.

Unknown Speaker 47:12
And then we’re going live on Facebook and we’re recording so I think I’m just going to stop the screen sharing in the meeting. Is that correct, Veronica?

Unknown Speaker 47:20
All right. That’s correct. She nods.

Unknown Speaker 47:22
Okay, bye guys. Thanks for attending and hope to see you soon.


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