In a team environment, there is a question that is bound to come up – how to effectively manage a project task that multiple individuals collaborate on? How can this be done in a way that minimizes errors, promotes accountability, and prevents delays? This is interesting challenge to consider as remote work continues to be the new normal and teams look for ways to improve processes.

In thinking about this recently, and exploring options within our current project management system, Monday.com, I’ve found the recently added subitems — allowing our process can go even further. Subitems allow you to break down a task into its most basic steps which allows for more detail and individual accountability at each step.

One way that we are using subitems is in a multi-stage review. Here’s how we setup the process: 

Outlining the steps

Short but descriptive subitem tasks are created beneath a parent item. We kept the subitem list short, no more than 5 tasks. Each subitem is also numbered to prevent confusion about the order of completion.

Individual accountability

One issue we encountered previously with parent items is knowing who should start the task when multiple people are assigned. With subitems, only one person is assigned to each subitem. The notes section is also used to provide additional detail about what each subitem owner should do to complete their task.

Automation

The final step in setting up the subitem process is creating automations that can help make the review process faster. We set up an automation that will notify the person assigned to the subitem that their step is ready to begin. The notification provides a high level of detail, eliminating the need to view the actual task in the platform. We included information such as subitem name, parent item name, group name, and board name – all visible within the automated message. The “start” work notification also automatically populates the team members daily task view.

Example of subitem set up

Subitems have allowed for greater transparency into multi-stage tasks and have been helpful in keeping team members informed in a remote work environment. We find over communicating and keeping deliverables top of mind for team members creates better collaboration, clarity on key members involved within the process, and efficiency.

Hopefully this has given you some ideas on how to incorporate multi-stage review into your own project management system.

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