It's essential that pre-work is received from all attendees prior to any advisory meeting.
Pre-work is important because:
- It engages the client in the process - preparing them for your meeting
- It helps you to understand the client's position to better prepare for the meeting
- It helps you to gauge alignment between business owners
- It allows you to go deeper in the meeting to address issues (rather than discover them)
- It helps to maximise meeting outcomes and value gained by the client
Pre-work is sent via email from the portal. Each email contains a unique link for the recipient to access and complete their pre-work online.
To send a pre-work email:
- Navigate to the relevant pre-work.
- Select the client's name from the Client dropdown.
- Amend the Subject Line if required, then review and edit the email. Ensure you've attached any files mentioned in the email, e.g. the client's previous Business Plan.
- All required fields will be marked in red. If you want to customise the existing questions, we strongly recommend reading the Customising pre-work questions section below.
- Click Next or Action to be taken to the email preview page.
- If more than one person needs to do pre-work for the meeting, click the button and type in their emails addresses, separated with a comma.
- You can also select client Contacts from the dropdown
- Each recipient will receive the same email with a unique link to their pre-work form
- Additionally, you can download the pre-work by clicking Download to PDF, or File in FYI if you have enabled the FYI integration.
- Click Send.
Each recipient must receive their own pre-work email from the portal in order to receive their unique pre-work link to access and complete it.
The Cashflow Forecast Pre-work is a Word file that you must download and attach to the pre-work email prior to sending it to your client. Add your logo, and update it to reflect your client's business. This is not a portal form as the client needs to be able to add additional rows depending on the size of their team.
Some pre-work forms, e.g. the Succession Planning Pre-work, already have an attachment loaded by The Gap, indicated by a red paperclip to the right-hand side of the subject line. Hover over the paperclip to view the filename or click to download or delete the attachment.
Each attendee must submit their pre-work at least 48 hours before the meeting to give the facilitator time to review the completed pre-work and any other documents as part of the preparation for the meeting.
The portal user who sends the pre-work will receive an email notification when the client has completed their pre-work. The completed pre-work can be downloaded to PDF by all firm users from the Main menu > > Inbox tab when viewing by 'All Documents'. For more information, see the Managing inbox notifications article.
What if the client doesn't submit their pre-work on time?
Ensure that the client is followed up with a phone call if their pre-work is not submitted by the due date. Discuss with the client whether they have enough time to complete it at least 48 hours before the meeting. If they are unable to, reschedule the meeting.
Avoid meetings of discovery! Reschedule if a client fails to complete their pre-work.
Customising pre-work questions
Our pre-work documents are set up to extract all the required information to deliver the service according to the Delivery Notes. As a result, we do not recommend adding questions. If absolutely necessary, we recommend amending an existing pre-work question. If this isn't possible, create a new pre-work template with the required questions. We only recommend adding a new question and answer field as a last resort, as this is not something the portal is designed to do.
If you think there is a question missing from a pre-work document that would be valuable to other users, please contact us. We regularly update our content based on user feedback.
Amending an existing pre-work question
To edit an existing pre-work question, simply click into the field and amend the text.
Creating a new pre-work template
If you are making substantial changes to a pre-work document, we recommend creating your own template in the Mai menu > > Templates
tab using the Pre-work
template or the Prework with Checkboxes
Adding a question and answer field to a pre-work form
You cannot add a question and answer field to a portal form using the editing toolbars. However, you can copy and paste an existing table that contains a question and answer field by following these steps:
Please note that it is easier to copy an answer field that has question text, even if this means you need to amend the question text after copying.
1. Choose a table that contains a question and answer box to copy. You can identify answer boxes as they have two double diagonal lines in the bottom-right corner.
2. Click outside the table on the right hand side. The cursor will show up on the right border of the answer field.
3. Press Enter. A new line break with your cursor will show up under the table.
4. Place the cursor on the outer box and click and drag to highlight the question and answer field.
5. Right-click on the selected text, then select Copy or use your keyboard shortcut CTRL+C/CMD + C.
6. Click to place the cursor where you want the new question and answer box.
7. Right-click, then select Paste or use your keyboard shortcut CTRL+V/CMD + V. A new table with a question and answer box will appear.
8. Amend the question as desired.
Always send yourself a test copy of an amended pre-work document to review prior to sending it to your client. Make sure you can type in the answer boxes.