The first step automating any part of your business is to write down every step in the process. Don’t skip over anything.
With onboarding, for example, your process probably looks like this:
- You are contacted by the client to set up a discovery call
- You go back and forth trying to find a date that works best for you both
- You email them a questionnaire before the meeting
- You realize that you aren’t sure who is calling who or what platform you’ll be meeting on – email back and forth to figure that out
- You were supposed to meet with the prospective client, but one of you forgot about a prior appointment or just forgot about the meeting
- You go back and forth again determining a new time
- You finally meet with the prospective client
- You send an email with any follow-up questions including what the next step would be
- Client hires you
- You send the contract and invoice to the client via email
- You then figure out how you will set up your first meeting or begin working
Why are there so many steps!? It should not be that complicated. You should not have to go back and forth so many times, there shouldn’t be any kind of mix-ups as to how you’re meeting (or when, if you’re in different time zones), and there should be no confusion. This is your first impression with the prospective client and it should go smoothly.
So, now that we’ve determined what our problem is, how do we fix it?
First, set up an account with a calendar booking application (I use 10to8.com, but there’s so many available) and put a link on your website. This way, the client can open your public calendar and select a date a time that works for them. Steps 1 and 2 are complete without you having to do anything! (Bonus tip: If the client emails you, respond with an email template that has a link to your calendar.)
Using the calendar booking application that you choose, they should automatically receive the client questionnaire, meeting reminders, and a link to your Skype or Zoom meeting room. Steps 3-6 are done and you still haven’t had to do a single thing!
You have your meeting. Sorry, you can’t automate and miss out on this one! Step 7, done!
After the call, send an email to the prospective client. You could use an email template (see how to do this in Gmail) and change any details to customize it for the lead. This should include a link to digitally sign the contract and an invoice so the client can pay you. Steps 8-10 are complete!
Once the contract is signed, the new client should automatically receive a welcome packet that includes vital information about your business such as your office hours, basic payment information, etc. This email should also include a link to set up an initial meeting, if necessary. Step 11 is finished!
That 11 step process for you turned into a two-step process for you! It’s like magic.
What does your client onboarding system look like?
Amanda Leigh, with her business savvy tools and upbeat attitude, helps entrepreneurs develop systems that work for, not against them. By setting up project management systems and email management protocols curated specifically for each business, Amanda’s dedication to helping others thrive means making sure nothing is forgotten.
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