Can I ask you something?

On a scale from 1 to 5, what’s your status of setting up workflows in your Trello boards?

1 — you add every label, every due date, simply everything by hand and move cards around as it appears to you

5 — every projectable action on your board, every time-sensitive event and every added due date, notification or any other information sequence follows a well-thought-out system. Your Trello board not only assists you in your work, it is the backbone of your activity, it is your most reliable virtual assistant. It is incorruptible and only denies to serve you the moment the Internet goes black.

 

So, once again, on this scale from 1 to 5, to what degree are you already using workflows in Trello?

Time’s are changing, and the time of AI and bots and robots is approaching – whether we like this reality or not.

 

I want to encourage you to embrace this challenge, and use it in such a way that your projects and your business take not only one but two or three steps forward. Organizing your Trello boards with workflows is now possible, and we all should get the hang of it … because … it is just so much fun watching that the work is done by itself!

 

So today, I want to introduce to you a few ways of how to create awesome workflow sequences in your Trello boards – in only a few minutes.

 

It’s a bit funny. Everybody likes the drag and drop stuff and easy to use shortkeys in Trello. But it seems most of us have the same problem: when our tasks are spread in boards all over, when team members get involved, or when a business process requires several boards to be depicted, Trello’s praised simplicity descends into chaos.

 

On top of that, everybody is using Trello in their unique way. No standard solutions or cookie-cutter way seems to enable quick wins here. However, since the rise of the ButlerBot, we can create workflows and workflow systems that allow automated cross-board planning and scheduling functionality.

 

Let me introduce to you what I call Workflow Kits for Trello.

 

Workflow Kits are a system of pre-created workflows that you can use to achieve some self-organization in your boards.

workflow kits for trello

The Idea of Workflow Kits for Trello

 

I had the idea to create Workflow Kits on a snowy day in January.

I pondered the question whether there’s a one-size-fits-all kind of workflow for certain board types.

I surely know that there are some setups that became a favorite for many, like an editorial blog calendar. And then, there is the classic board setup that Trello promotes so often, with the 3 lists To Do / Doing / Done. But most significantly, there is a lot of individuality in the way people use Trello. And if there was a baseline that I could use to create Workflow Kits with pre-written commands for inbuilt workflows, I probably would have to set up a bunch of Workflow Kits.

 

But first, let’s get clear what is meant by ‘workflows’:
Workflows are a sequence of actions that are executed when a certain trigger gets triggered.

 

From the feedback I received from students of my free online course on using Butler for Trello, I understood that it isn’t that simple for everyone to put together a workflow or even a command.

workflow kits for trello free butler for trello online course

 

 

Offering a selection of basic features in such a Workflow Kit, however, would be something that would hit a nerve with a lot of users. Each Workflow Kit would be ready to use and fully functioning. The commands contained in each Workflow Kit, can be copied into each relevant board in Trello, and lists and labels would have to be arranged accordingly. But when that is done: the workflows are ready to be used.

On top of that, each setup can of course be adjusted. People could either make adjustments to the already existing commands, or they could create features on top of these commands and fully customize their boards to their liking.

 

So, that was the idea of Workflow Kits I originally have come up with.

I already have created two different Workflow Kits that I am going to introduce now below. And I am working on a bunch of new ones.

Workflows for Classic Trello Boards

The first Workflow Kit that I developed, targeted the type of boards that Trello promotes itself the most often with. The classic style comes with 3 lists: To Do — Doing — Done.

workflow kits for trello classic 3 boards

 

Now, there’s quite some leeway of what features could be included in the classic board style.

To give justice to differing needs, I created four versions of it. Each of them with a different degree of complexity.

Workflow Kits for Trello Classic Boards
Version 1

Version 1 is using only one label (Ready) and comes with features of

  • Daily list sorting
  • Moving cards between lists
  • Archiving
  • Housekeeping
Version 2

Version 2 is using two labels (Ready, Overdue) and comes with features of

  • Daily list sorting
  • Moving cards between lists
  • Due date magic
  • Archiving
  • Housekeeping
Version 3

Version 3 is using three labels (Ready, Overdue, Urgent) and comes with features of

  • Daily list sorting
  • Moving cards between lists
  • Due date magic
  • Urgency handling
  • Archiving
  • Housekeeping
Version 4

Version 4 is using four labels (Ready, Overdue, Urgent, Postponed) and comes with features of

  • Daily list sorting
  • Moving cards between lists
  • Due date magic
  • Urgency handling
  • Postponing
  • Archiving
  • Housekeeping

All four versions are included in the Workflow Kit, and you can choose which one to use in your Trello board. For instance, you could use Workflow version 1 in one board, and Workflow version 3 in another board. One board can be simpler, another more complex. The commands can be used in as many boards as desired. And of course, they are fully customizable. You can add different labels, choose a different archiving rhythm, or build something completely different on top of that.

 

For instance, if you don’t want to use a label called “Postponed”, but rather want to call it “Paused”, that’s totally possible. Such a customization takes only a few minutes.

workflow kit for trello classic 3 boards cheatsheet

Every Workflow Version comes with a cheatsheet, providing you with the necessary info what to expect from each Workflow version and step-by-step instructions how to use the included files and commands.

Workflows for Master Trello Board

 

This Workflow Kit is an advancement of the Workflow Kit for Classic Trello boards, version 4.

It allows using one board as the central hub for a number of other boards. I call that the Master board.

workflow kits trello master classic

I was thinking about a solution for this, because I heard from quite a few directions, that people are struggling with due tasks slipping through their fingers. And this was particularly true when there were multiple boards in play and the tasks were literally spread all over different boards within Trello.

“The lack of cross-board / cross-project planning and scheduling functionality is a major problem for those of us who are managing multiple projects.”

workflow kit for trello master boards

I was figuring that there needed to be a Master board that could store all relevant tasks. And all that was then needed, was a continuous syncing mechanism across boards.

As you can probably imagine, there is not just one possible setup of using a Master board. Whilst these Workflow Kits for Trello might not be a solution for everyone, I am sure they are an excellent starting point, they will work for many AND they are customizable! They can adapt and grow as your boards grow.

Included in the Workflow Kit is a video that shows you how to import the commands into your Trello boards. If you know how to copy&paste, you should be definitely able to get this done.

One quick word about how it works. You can make changes to a card/task on both your individual board or your Master board. The in-built syncing mechanism is bi-directional. Updates are automatically applied across boards.

 

This Workflow Kit combines the simplicity of the classic board system described above, with the convenience of a Master-Client setup.

 

And these are the four features that this particular Workflow Kit is made of:

  • Copy commands between boards when a new card is created
  • Move commands between lists upon certain triggers
  • Use labels as triggers
  • Sync commands between boards when changes are made to a card (bi-directionally)

 

 

For this board setup, you can use as many individual To-Do Boards as you like to link to the Master board: 3, 9, 15 or 25. Of course, the more boards you have that need syncing, the more operations are used. That’s something you need to consider. Butler for Trello comes with a generous free plan that allows you to take off. But should you really want to use 15+ boards to sync into your Master board, you’ll probably have to upgrade. If you want to learn more about Butler for Trello, have a look at the article series I created, and also, feel free to sign up for the free online course where I teach you everything you need to know before getting started.

PART 1

How to use Butler for Trello to increase your productivity

PART 2

11 Little genius Butler Hacks that Tame your Trello Chaos

PART 3

A Breakthrough in Automated Project Management in Trello

PART 4

How to Set Up Productivity Workflows with Butler for Trello

Workflow Kits for Trello Master Project Board Setup
Workflow Kits for Trello Master To-Do
Workflow Kits for Trello Classic Boards
Workflow Kits for Trello Rolling Calendar

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