RE: tracking progress on tight deadline? - Traffic

Subject: RE: tracking progress on tight deadline? - Traffic
From: Annamaria Profit <inteltek2 -at- earthlink -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 24 Mar 2002 18:23:33 -0500

I received several private e-mail requests for more information, so I'm responding publicly too, so that folks who would like to investigate this "traffic management" process can go on to the expert sources. Traffic management is one facet of Project management in an agency. Other facets include production and estimation. The really successful ones managed both client and agency side trafficking. Their jobs were at the heart of the agency's profitability. They were hard working, outgoing, good managers, great negotiators, polished, extremely well organized, well liked, and given to spontaneous Friday afternoon parties. In fact, an agency party/outing was their answer to stress generally. When things heated up, they bought bagels, ordered pizza and beer, or funded a trip to a local watering hole. None of the ones I've known and loved over the years were traffic/project nazis. I don't know why or how they managed all the deadlines without biting someone, but they did. They had everyone's respect.

So here are some other urls, etc.
1. the 4A's--Amer Assoc of Adv Agencies has a Web site
I know they sell pamphlets entitled "What every account exec needs to know about..." and one of them is a traffic manual--a how-to book, essentially. However, I tried the site and it looks like they're locked up tight. So give them a call and see if you can buy the publication, and if that doesn't work, find a friend in a member advertising agency and call in a favor. It will be worth the modest cost. Here are related adv associations--go digging there for more info.

2. There's also a job web site that sells an advertising careers guide, and traffic management will be one of them, however, the guide is about all the ad careers, so if it's worth the price of the e-book anyway, go for it.

Ad agencies pay the second highest rates in the country for all positions--second only to IT companies. A good traffic manager can pull in $60,000+. An ad exec pulls down mega bucks plus an annual percentage of the account's annual sales, dependent on performance and profitability! You could buy a house with their Christmas bonuses. Support staff gets a percentage of annual salary--still significant.
2001 Salary Survey:

Here's an ad

4A Ad Agency seeks highly organized individual with traffic experience. Must be able to help with project planning, monitor deadlines, and work closely with all Agency departments. Should be able to create traffic reports, furnish ad materials to publications in electronic format, and work with time sheet entry programs. Some print production/art direction experience very desirable. We are a highly computerized operation and the selected individual will also need to have sufficient computer skills to learn the programs we use to maintain our electronic ad and brochure libraries.

A representative Traffic Production Manager job description:
*Establish production quality control and support system.
*Oversee production quality and budgets for advertising materials, including collateral, direct mail, point of purchase, magazine and newspaper.
*Establish guidelines, provide guidance, leadership and methodology of the work.
*Execute options to provide a best production resolution that meets Creative and Client satisfaction.
*Oversee Electronic Production studio, scheduling process and color process.
The ideal candidate will have a Bachelors degree in Communications or Advertising, 5+ years of production execution experience in advertising or marketing industry and 2+ years of management experience. In addition, 2+ years electronic file prep, Mac and billing knowledge.
· Initiate or "open" new jobs within production department's tracking system. Create appropriate files (job jacket/folder) for maintaining job information and/art, from start to finish.
· With input of creative staff, develop schedules which include deadlines and deliverables with the appropriate "owners" of each deliverable.
· Monitor daily work flow to ensure jobs are on track.
· Communicate, document and address any issues with appropriate creative staff that may impact the successful and on-time delivery of a job.
· Keep all job-related materials organized and updated, (i.e., art, schedules, memos, creative briefs.) in a document management system.

At 03:27 PM 3/24/02 +0200, various TECHwhrlers wrote:
<One of the advantages of working in the advertising industry was that I had
a traffic manager--who actually scheduled the process across all the
stages. And they negotiated/arbitrated any variances between depts/vendors and with the client.>

This is very interesting. It looks like we can apply some traffic management
principles to our work. Can you point us to articles/books/websites that
describe how these people do their jobs?

Annamaria Profit
E-mail: inteltek2 -at- earthlink -dot- net
"Where it is possible, live in peace with all men."
(Romans 12:18)

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RE: tracking writer progress on tight deadline? - Traffic: From: Erika Yanovich

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