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Our Proven Process

We help agencies cancel chaos and create clarity

We’ve helped thousands of agencies streamline their operations and build healthier, more efficient teams.

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Identifying chaos: Is this your reality?

Chaos in agency operations often manifests as missed deadlines, limited visibility, and a pervasive sense of disorder—symptoms all too familiar for many growing businesses. Whether you're in the exhilarating phase of scaling up, starting to struggle with siloed teams, or navigating the challenge of limited visibility in to day-to-day operations, we understand what you're facing.

Lack of visibility

You can't easily see profitability, capacity, client health, or project progress, and work is delivered inconsistently due to lack of standardized processes.

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Chaotic projects

Without a single source of truth, work continues to slip through the cracks, deadlines aren't being met, and your team is operating in silos.

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A frustrated team

Your project management system is complex and your team is frustrated because they don't know how to use it, when to use it, or what work is on their plate.

What does clarity look like?

Whether you realize it or not, you may be facing some type of chaos at your organization—it may not always be at the leadership level. Clarity involves every level of your organization—from leadership to your individual contributors.
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Clear roles & responsibilities

Every team member comes in to work each day knowing exactly what they need to do, how to do it, and the additional context they need to get it done right the first time.

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Documented processes

All processes are documented and followed by all because they're living where the work gets done, not collecting dust in a disconnected Google Drive.

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Healthy communication

Communication is centralized in one system (not happening across Slack, email, text, etc.), and everyone knows what's happening.

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30,000 foot view

A team that's operating and thriving in one central system, creating a single source of truth—providing leadership a 30,000-foot view of everything happening across the organization.

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Profitability visibility

Leadership has full visibility into which clients, projects, services, and team members are the most and least profitable, helping them make data-driven decisions to increase profitability.

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Workload visibility

Project managers have a view that shows them exactly how much capacity their team has, helping them make better assignments to avoid overworking or underworking team members.

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Client health visibility

Leadership has a central dashboard that shows them exactly which clients are healthy or at risk for churn. 

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Project progress visibility

Account managers have a single view that shows them exactly which projects are on or behind schedule (and the reasons why they're behind schedule—yes, sometimes it's the client's fault, and it's always good to have proof of that!).

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Client visibility

Clients are happy and love the proactive and organized experience. They have clarity on what's happened, what's coming, the results, and they have an easy-to-follow process for making requests.

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A proactive team

The team is spending more time designing strategies and being proactive, rather than reactive, putting out fires, or simply taking orders from clients.

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Seamless handoffs

An incredible onboarding process that makes the sales to delivery handoff a breeze.

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Data-driven hiring decisions

Leadership has the data that shows them exactly which type of role they need to hire if they are to bring on a new client or project.

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Vacation!

The business can operate without the founder(s), providing the time and space for a well-deserved vacation. 

How are agencies trying to overcome this chaos?

The short answer - technology.

Most firms ignore everything else and turn to the latest and greatest project management software, expecting it to be the magical switch that turns off all operational woes. Sadly, this technology-centered approach often fails and leads to a costly cycle of switching systems every 12-17 months.

The truth is, technology alone isn't the answer, and this repeating cycle of tool switching may be costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

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So what is the solution?

Truly achieving gold-standard operations and clarity for all does not start with software trials or furiously jotting down process checklists. It requires deeper work with your team to identify the real needs of all the roles in your organization. And yes, this will require time, effort, and the willingness to buy-in, embrace, and love the process. The teams that are successful are the ones that:

  • Desire to reduce internal chaos and give team members more clarity.
  • Desire to be excellent at managing projects to deliver great client results on time and within budget.
  • Desire to improve visibility into team performance, capacity planning, and results.
  • Desire to be more systematic, process-driven, and organized.
  • And have a willingness to pay for expertise and listen to experience. They "want what works."

If you have the desire and motivation to spend the necessary time to eliminate chaos, you're one step closer, but you still need to follow a proven methodology that works.

The solution:
The 1-3-5 Formula

This methodology isn't just a theory; it's a practical, proven strategy for achieving clarity and efficiency across all levels of your organization. The 1-3-5 Formula systematically evaluates your processes, helps create a plan to reduce inefficiencies, and works with your team to implement an effective solution.

 

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one goal

One goal: Clarity for all

Let's start with the core objective: clarity. In our experience working with 2,700+ different firms, we've found that the root of most operational inefficiencies can be traced back to a lack of clarity.

Whether it's confusion about business metrics, team performance, or individual responsibilities, clarity is the solution. Our goal with the 1-3-5 Formula is to eliminate these ambiguities, ensuring that everyone in your organization knows precisely what they need to do and how their work contributes to the broader objectives.

Three keys: Tools, processes, and habits

To truly achieve operational clarity, you need to focus on three critical components: tools, processes, and habits.

Use the right tools

The right tools can dramatically enhance your agency's efficiency. All gold-standard operations have a core operating hub that serves as their single source of truth. And that hub is tied into the rest of their business tooling, and they have an intentional design to make it as efficient and effortless as possible for their team, while providing the key reporting that leads to better decision-making.

Execute the right processes

Consistent, well-defined processes are the backbone of any efficient operation. They ensure that work is completed in a standardized, predictable manner, leading to reliable outcomes and making it easier to scale your agency's operations.

A gold-standard operation is able to turn individual expertise into company knowledge. Their standard operating procedures (SOPs) are documented, up-to-date, and shared by all. And importantly, their team follows those SOPs because they've made the process live where work gets done. Nobody is chasing down a random Google Doc to try to find the process.

Feel free to get started by downloading our free client onboarding process template here.

Build the right habits

The adoption and execution of your tools and processes depend on the habits of your team. Cultivating a culture of excellence, accountability, and continuous improvement is essential. It's about ensuring that your team not only understands the tools and processes but also excels in utilizing them to achieve your agency's goals.

Gold-standard operations spend time setting crystal clear expectations and rules of engagement, training their team on exactly how work is done at their firm, holding their team accountable to those rules of engagement, and coaching and improving their most valuable assets - their people.

Truly world-class businesses excel at all three of these aspects. It's the magic combination of these three that enables them to build and maintain a great culture and great profits while scaling quickly.

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Five steps to operational excellence

Our structured, five-step process brings the 1-3-5 Formula to life:

Step 1: Design

Clarify your goals, decide on your behavioral standards, outline your necessary processes, and design a technical blueprint.

This stage is about ensuring everyone on your team can close their eyes and envision the same end state of operational excellence while also having clarity on how you'll get there.

Step 2: Build

With a clear vision and structure in place, you now need to construct the tooling and processes. This isn't just about setting up tools; it's about integrating them into a cohesive tech stack that supports your agency's unique needs and requirements.

Step 3: Train

Next, focus on training your team. Effective training goes beyond just showing how tools work; it's about instilling the right habits and behaviors, ensuring your team is equipped to utilize the new processes and tools effectively.

Train your team on the tooling, but also on the expectations.

Step 4: Launch

This phase is where the rubber meets the road. After launching your new system, you need to hold your team accountable to your new standards, fostering the development of healthy habits and ensuring that your new processes are followed.

Step 5: Optimization

Finally, you enter a continuous cycle of optimization. Using real-life data (now that you have lots of it!), refine your operations and make iterative improvements to further enhance efficiency and effectiveness.

This process is never over. And this is where the real fun begins!

By focusing on clarity, leveraging the right combination of tools, processes, and habits, and following a disciplined, step-by-step approach, your agency can not only overcome operational hurdles but also set a foundation for scalable growth.

How can ZenPilot help?

We've helped thousands of agencies streamline their operations and build healthier, more efficient teams. We'll lead you through our 1-3-5 Formula so that you can stop switching tools, frustrating your team, and wasting thousands of dollars in lost productivity every month.

Stage 1: Blueprint

We begin by coming alongside you to identify your current operational inefficiencies, document your goals, and design a technical blueprint and implementation plan that'll solve your current project management woes. This includes:

Diagnosing underlying issues

We dive deep into your operations, identifying inefficiencies through comprehensive team surveys and leadership insights, often uncovering surprising bottlenecks.

Goal setting and success measurement

Together, we define your success metrics, whether it's boosting productivity, enhancing team collaboration, or improving project delivery.

Customized system design

Our experts design a tailored technical blueprint for your agency, selecting the right tools and integrations to streamline your workflow and enhance visibility.

Technical Blueprint-1

 

Strategic implementation plan

You'll receive a detailed plan, crafted to unite your team around a shared vision for operational excellence, ensuring a seamless transition to new workflows.

Implementation plan & timeline

By the end of this 2-4 week process, you'll have a comprehensive blueprint that not only identifies areas for improvement but sets a clear, actionable path forward. 

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Project Management Implementation

Stage 2: Implementation

Next, we'll take the Blueprint we designed together and build this exact structure inside ClickUp—saving you hundreds of person-hours and months of work. After your system is live, we'll train your team on how to use it and get you fully onboarded in just a few weeks.

Custom ClickUp workspace

After a brief intake process, we'll take your Blueprint and build out your ClickUp workspace tailored to the unique needs of your firm, incorporating the appropriate hierarchy, custom fields, views, automations, and everything needed for your team's tasks and processes.

You can expect to have your custom ClickUp workspace set up within 1-3 weeks after finishing the intake process.

Clickup Workspace

Mission control space setup

We'll also build you a central mission control space to track client-related and internal records, providing us with a foundation for reporting and helping your team begin tracking time and contract health right out of the gate.

Mission control space

Delivery space configuration

Thirdly, we'll build and populate your space for client work with client folders, custom fields, and automations, designed to create central source of truth for all billable work. This will provide clear visibility into time, easy profitability reporting and analysis, and simplified billing.

Delivery space in ClickUp

Process library creation

We'll build you a repository for creating and storing your SOPs and process templates, making best practices accessible to all team members.

Process Library Space

Support and training

You will have a dedicated ZenPilot coach and access to our ClickUp certification course, ensuring that your team is well-prepared to excel within the new setup.

ZenPilot Training Center and Coach

By the end of this 6-7 week process, you'll have a fully operational, custom-configured ClickUp environment and a fully trained team ready to elevate your agency's productivity from the get-go.

Stage 3: Project management intensives

After your new system is live and being used by your entire team, we'll spend the next few months improving the system. You'll be enrolled in our community-based training program where you'll have access to hundreds of hours of pre-recorded training courses, a dedicated coach, and live office-hours training calls to help you document your core processes, unlock leadership-level visibility, and enable your team do better work, faster.

Coaching and training

Your leadership team, entire organization, and in-house ClickUp Champion receive tailored support and training to build the system, maintain it, and uphold accountability. Taking you through key phases of building efficient operations:

  • Process Building: Collaborating with your experts to document SOPs and convert them into ClickUp templates, ensuring consistent processes and deeper insights into project management.
  • Migration Preparation & Execution: Guiding your client leads through the configuration and deployment of client work within the new system.
  • Workload Management Training: Equipping your project managers and team leads with the skills to leverage newfound visibility for informed decision-making.
Communal workshops

Join weekly sessions for live workshops to gain insights from both ZenPilot experts and peer agencies.

Communal coaching calls

On-demand training courses

Gain access to our extensive library of tutorials covering the ins and outs of ClickUp, building and deploying templates, migrating client work in to the system, and managing workload.

Project Management Intensives Course

Process template library

Dive into our collection of 180+ agency-specific and operational templates designed to streamline your workflows.

ZenPilot Template Library

Throughout this process you'll be building a finely-tuned operational system that not only boosts efficiency but fosters a culture of accountability and continuous improvement within your agency.

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ZenPilot Reporting + Optimization

Stage 4: Reporting and optimization

Lastly, we'll continue to help you leverage the full power of your newly implemented system for reporting, ongoing optimization, and strategic decision-making—providing advanced reporting and continuous workflow enhancements, automation builds, and custom solutions to improve team productivity.

Profitability reporting setup

We configure detailed reports to provide deep insights into key performance indicators like profitability, resource utilization, budget pacing, timelines, and team efficiency.

Profitability Reporting for Agencies

 

Strategic decision support

Armed with comprehensive data, your leadership can make informed decisions to propel the agency forward, ensuring sustainable growth and profitability.

 

Custom automations & workflow improvements

We'll continue to work together to identify operational bottlenecks and provide you with advanced automations and workflow enhancements to continue to ramp up team productivity—saving you time and money.

ClickUp + HubSpot Integration Webinar

Advanced ClickUp builds

We'll continue to build advanced solutions in ClickUp to continuously improve your operations and build a more productive, profitable, and healthy team.

OOO Management in ClickUp

Continued training & support

We provide ongoing training and education to help your team excel in their respective roles.

ZenPilot Training Center and Coach

As we continue our ongoing partnership, we'll be building a culture of data-driven decision-making and continuous optimization that keeps your agency competitive and agile.


Since becoming our first partner in 2018, ZenPilot has stood out as the go-to solution for agencies who want to get the most out of ClickUp.

Their commitment to truly solving for the customer and providing the best customer experience is perfectly aligned with our mission at ClickUp - and it shows up in their results and the feedback we consistently hear about ZenPilot.


Zeb Evans
ClickUp Founder & CEO

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What success have ZenPilot customers seen?

When companies buy into our 1-3-5 formula—not just with money, but with time, effort, and belief—success is sure to follow.

+27%

Avg. Capacity Improvement

+11%

Avg. Gross Margin Growth

+34%

Avg. Client LTV Increase

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The real game changer of working with ZenPilot was the visibility it gave us into our whole business. I can now feel peace knowing where projects are at, see blocks coming ahead of time so we can proactively communicate with clients, and plan out work accordingly with my team.

There is no way I could’ve built out all the top-tier processes we did in such a short amount of time without ZenPilot—or train my team on healthy project management habits.

ZenPilot is hands down one of the best investments we’ve made as a business. They help us live up to our value of excellence. If you have any doubts, leave them at the door and jump in!


Rebecca Nash
Beam Content

ZenPilot Testimonials

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Our team is more efficient, productive, and healthier. I was always wary of how much of our work could be put into processes, but this has completely changed my mind. If you want to take your agency to the next level, ZenPilot is a must!

Kyle Harms, Digital Hot Sauce
Kyle Harms

Digital Hot Sauce

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They provided the tools, processes, and in-depth knowledge to allow us to successfully migrate our entire business to ClickUp in just a few weeks. We would recommend ZenPilot to anyone considering a move to ClickUp.
Andrew Cole, Fat Earth
Andrew Cole

Fat Earth Media

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They saved us a lot of time and trouble, and we've had many amazed comments from clients and colleagues about how organized our process is now.

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Arianne Foulks

Aeolidia

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Since following ZenPilot's strategy and best practices, our team is saving hours per team member every week. Communication has improved across the team and we're able to give our clients better visibility in their campaigns. Margins have increased because of the efficiency as well.
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Chris Dubois

Lean Labs

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Leadership now has a clear view of bandwidth and capacity, the staff understands exactly what is expected of them when they sit down every morning, and our clients have improved visibility into their deliverables.
Kevin D'Arcy, ThinkFuel
Kevin D'Arcy

ThinkFuel

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We are more efficient than ever and have streamlined our communication so it's organized and on task, vs having a huge Slack channel or Slack mess.
Josh Crouch, Relentless Digital
Josh Crouch

Relentless Digital

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ZenPilot has been the most impactful agency operations investment we’ve ever made. They understood our situation, know ClickUp inside out, and led our team to a successful implementation. If you’re serious about scaling your agency, you need to talk to ZenPilot - they transformed how we work and led a 300% improvement in efficiency.
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Michael Lisovetsky

Co-founder JUICE

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ZenPilot came in with a framework, implementation, and training resources to move our agency through a lot of change in the way our 30 member team does things....change management that is super hard like task and time tracking! They really know ClickUp, and we do some crazy complicated things in there. If you need help scaling and measuring operational performance in your agency, ZenPilot is a great partner to get it done.
Ben Labay
Ben Labay

CEO, Speero

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Our agency has tried many project management tools over the years, but when we migrated to ClickUp we finally felt like we got it right. But hiring ZenPilot to help us implement it was an even better decision -- easily the best investment we made in our agency's growth. In the year since implementing ClickUp, our business has doubled, and our project management systems and structure have been able to adapt and scale with us

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Whitney Parker Mitchell

CEO & Founder, Beacon Digital Marketing

And finally, what's the investment?

ZenPilot employs a monthly subscription model broken into three tiers: Economy ($4,000/month), Business ($6,000/month), and First Class ($9,000/month).

Each of these subscription tiers is fully points-based and is crafted to offer unparalleled flexibility and to ensure our services align perfectly with your agency's shifting needs over time.

For a detailed overview of our pricing structure and to better understand the comprehensive benefits of partnering with ZenPilot, check out our pricing page.

Ready to get started?

We've guided thousands of agencies to successfully increase their productivity and profits. Book a call to see how we can help you navigate the 1-3-5 Formula.