The country’s top interior designers—ranging from single proprietors to large interior practices—have come to rely on Studio Designer as an essential tool for their businesses. With its robust array of features, Studio Designer has evolved according to the needs of the trade for decades as we adopt new technologies and continually enhance the platform to set up designers for better organization, productivity, and success.

On the project management side, we have noticed one small, but eye-catching feature that has gained a substantial fanbase among Studio Designer clients— the Color Priority Status indicators, also known as color priorities. Design firm professionals working in the platform can assign one of 10 colors, or even no color, to each item entered in the system. In settings, they can custom label what they want each color to indicate specifically for the business. Finally, they can even run filters on colors when viewing the items on a screen and run custom reports on each color or even multiple colors at a time.

Color Priority Status indicators

A Growing Fanbase for Color Priorities

A rising swell of Studio Designer clients has come to treasure the customization and organizational benefits of these color priorities. Interior designers are naturally visually oriented and especially attuned to the power of color, so it makes sense that they would be drawn to this vivid feature of the platform. In this post, a number of Studio Designer clients share with us in detail just why they love color priorities and why this feature is effective and important for their businesses. Color priorities have empowered them to better organize how they handle and track items, work with their colleagues, and even establish custom project management solutions.

Color priorities were introduced in the first cloud version of Studio Designer and have evolved to their current state with an expanded palette and numerous enhancements. Designer Emily Johnson of Park 21 Design is a massive fan of the color-priority system and shared, “The color-coded circles give me a quick glance of the pulse of my projects. I can always dig deeper with reports as needed when time allows.”

Customizing Colors for Project Success

Studio Designer clients value the ability to define just exactly what each color indicates for their business and how the customization of the colors can be used for better coordination. Client Donna Beck of a.lynn design, detailed how she uses them in the above screenshot, “We have assigned each color a status category and we update the color as the item progresses from start to finish. It is a great feature in that you can easily track items for a single project by using the filter tool. We have also incorporated the color codes into our weekly team meeting, we filter by color for all projects to see what needs to be ordered that week or what deficiencies we need to work on or follow-up on.” This screenshot shows a settings screen in Studio Designer where clients can customize the color priorities.

Emily also shared that the colors are especially important for her to quickly know if an item has been “ordered, shipped, received, lost, issues, etc.” By filtering by color, she can drill down the status of important items without having to delve into a detailed report. Studio Designer made an enhancement to the color priorities allowing clients to filter by more than one color, improving the ability to use colors to find important information.

Consultants and bookkeepers who specialize in Studio Designer are also major fans of the color priorities. It has allowed them to come up with more solutions and systems to boost the workflow and productivity of their clients. Accountant Lidija Markes shared with us, “One of my clients with an in-house staff of six needed a good system for every member of the team to be aware of the status of individual items without the need for constant meetings or emails. We put together a chart of priority colors and assigned them each both the status and person responsible for updates.” Every item input into Studio Designer is uncolored initially, but a recent enhancement allows clients to set up a preferred default color in settings to all new items entered in the system.

A Productive Palette for Project Management

For one of her clients in particular, Lidija uses the color priorities to show when items are ready to be ordered, “I apply the money and mark those items purple which means they are ready for purchase. The expediter logs in and sorts the list of items to only see purple and proceeds to place orders. If the senior designers want to check where we are with purchasing, they can simply log into Studio and sort for items purchased (green), items where only deposits have been paid (blue), or items that have been delivered to the storage warehouse (orange) or a workroom (brown).” This system allows her to know exactly where a colleague is in the project process, even in their absence. Lidija has implemented the same system with her other designer clients because of the successful time-saving aspects of her customized color priority system.

This example highlights the ways in which expediters for interior design firms are using the color priorities. Expediter Tracey Thornton of Steele Street Studios praised the fact that Studio Designer appears attentive to client feedback and said, “We love how responsive Studio Designer is to our questions and suggestions. Some of the latest updates have been so helpful (like the batch update of the priority colors.” Tracey refers to an enhancement allowing clients to change the color status of multiple items in batches at a time. The image above shows how Tracey organizes her color priority system, and you can see that she has even customized some colors specifically for herself and another key team member. Her firm has taken advantage of the color priorities to develop a highly customized, in-house organizational system effective for her needs, as seen in the document image below.

Given the robust and complex functionality of other aspects of Studio Designer, it is easy to miss the relatively simple functionality of the color priorities. Yet, subscribers should pay attention to the powerful way that many of our clients have used the colors to boost their business in unexpected and effective ways. The creativity of Studio Designer’s clientele isn’t just limited to beautiful interior spaces, but also includes innovative methods on how to run a successful design practice.

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