Tag Archives: Work

No More Attachments

What is one of the biggest time sucks in corporate information workflow?

Email Attachments.

Let’s go through an exercise.

Person A sends out an Excel document, Word document, PowerPoint presentation – choose your poison. They send it to 6 people. They ask each person to update a section and send it back to get merged.

First off, this is very 1999ish. We have better ways to do this. But let’s continue.

Person 1, 2, 3 start to update their sections. Person 1 replies directly to Person A, Person 2 replies to all. Person 3 though needs feedback from people not on the original chain. So they cut out their section, create a new document, and email it to Person X and Y. Person X updates something and sends it back to Person 3 but also CC’s Person B. Person Y updates the SAME part and sends back to 3 and X.

Confused yet? I am.

Person 3 then needs to merge sections but there are conflicts. So more back and forth on that with more attachments and revisions. Naming files CoolFileName_Rev5, Rev6, etc.

Meanwhile, back to our original 6. It has been a few hours, or a day, and Person 4, 5, 6 have been updating their stuff but haven’t sent anything back. But wait! Person 1 realized they didn’t have some critical info in the document, so they create a new revision themselves, this time with changes incorporated from Person 1 and 2, but not 3, and new changes from Person A that they forgot. They then send that revision back to Person 1-6 again and say sorry, but figure out what I changed and update your sections again. We go back to zero.

I could keep going here but you get the idea. Before you know it, there are multiple copies (10? 15? 20?) floating around, none of which are the master. It ends up being way more work for everyone involved.

I said earlier this is a better way. But what is it?

Well, using collaboration tools the way they were meant to be used would be a great start.

How about this? Person A saves their document to SharePoint (or insert your favorite collaboration tool here). In the document library they save it to, they turn of document revisions. They then send out the same email but without the attachment, instead a link to the document. The instruct Person 1-6 to try to “edit it Office Online/Web” so they can edit at the same time and not run into having file locking issues.

Person 1-6 then start their edits, and they can see the others working on it. Person 3 asks Person A to share the link/document library with Person X and Y, and they join in as well. Person X then asks for Person B to be included, and that happens too.

When Person A realizes they forgot some key info, they just update the master and send out a note that they update it, but everyone working on the document sees that too, and better yet, revisions are saved as time goes on, so they can see edits over time.

Which way do you want to work?

I choose the latter. Let me hear it.. “but so and so doesn’t know how to use tool X” or “it is too hard to get it going” etc. Well, I would choose a little pain up front the first few times using this new way of doing things instead of the perpetual nightmare of attachments forever.

Can we all agree, that “no more attachments” would be a good mantra? Who is with me?

Welcome Back

It’s been a loooong time since I have posted here. Well, time to change that. The experiment is over. Always been toying with other things. Twitter, Google+, Facebook, svbtle, medium, blogger, whatever. But I guess this is where I belong. Hell, I’m getting requests from this guy.

I focused on some other things.. stevenovoselac.com, which still is an experiment. Orignally it was a lifestream, on a few different services, then Posterous, which Twitter bought, so I moved it to WordPress, then Squarespace (which locks you in HARD btw) – and now decided to take some of the posts and move to svbtle. We will see what I do with it. Like I said, still an experiment.

In all reality I haven’t posted here since 11/2012.

What’s changed since then?

steve and olive

  • Life: Olive is almost a year old, our house is coming along
  • Work: I’ve promoted some awesome people and I have many less direct reports. I am getting into other technologies and projects.
  • Health: I started cycling. I’ve lost 65 lbs since 11/2012.
  • Tech: Chromebook? Macbook? Android? WP8? iOS development? Chromecast? Everything else? check. And more.
  • Music: Still rockin
  • Homebrewing: Yep, still doing that too. Need to do it more. I plan on it.

steve novoselac

I’ve cleaned up the theme a bit. Cleaned up some links etc. Still some categorization to here. Oh yeah, still have ads too. It pays for the hosting, and a beer every few months. :)

brewing

Looking at my Google Analytics, I can tell you exactly when Google Reader shut down…

Not even sure if anyone still reads blogs… do they? I know I do. Feedly is my drug of choice for a reader.

kom

What do people want to read about? Let me know in the comments.. which I guess I might see one or two. Otherwise I will just make up stuff as I go, which is pretty much how I operate anyways.

fam

Oh yeah, I love that Mase song – listen to the YouTube, it’s awesome.

Looking to Hire…

I have been managing two different groups @ Trek -  (Business Intelligence and .NET Software Development) for a while now, and we have some openings we are trying to file, so that is why I am putting this out here.

First role, looking to hire a Microsoft .NET Windows Forms developer, or someone with web experience looking to get into Windows Forms and eventually WPF/Silverlight, and also Windows Services. C# is the language.

Second role, looking for a Microsoft Business Intelligence Developer/DBA – SSAS/SSIS/SSRS, DBA experience preferred. Working on cubes, and ETL’s and reports and DBA stuff.

Shoot me an email at steve_novoselac@trekbikes.com with your resume and info.

Getting There

Worked on the basement pretty much all weekend. Finished painting, put up trim and cleaned it up. Hauled in the last of the stuff I had out in a trailer. The couch was a debalce. Wouldn’t come through the back door, and it fit though the front door, but wouldnt turn the corner down the basement. What we had to do was cut a hole in the sheetrock from the garage to the side door – like I said, debacle. Wish I would of taken a picture, because the sheetrock is back up now. I got DirectTV – finally. After them cancelling once, then cancelling again – and me calling and saying, today or never, they sent a tech out who got here at 7PM. Also I think I found a bug of some sort with SQL 2005. I set up a new laptop this week, and it was fine, but then I noticed IISAdmin service was crashed and wouldnt start – WTF right? So I do a clean install – start getting everything installed, IISAdmin was fine – until I installed SQL2005 (everything – RS, AS, IS, MS). So now, I’m on my second clean install, and I havent installed SQL yet. I think I am going to just install Management Studio and hope to heck that IISAdmin stays running.

New Job

I usually don’t talk about work on my blog, but I figured this is a pretty big thing, so I would post about it. Tomorrow I start my first day at my new job, at freeze.com. For the last 5 and a half years I have worked at St. Cloud Wireless Holdings, the holdings company of Cellular 2000 (Recently sold to Verizon) and Northern PCS, a Sprint PCS Affiliate. It has been a good place to work at, and I have learned a lot. I just am ready for something new. Hopefully I will enjoy my new job, and I am looking forward to new challenges.