Traffic Supervisor, Manager or Assistant?

If you work at a large advertising agency or in-house creative department, you might be privileged enough to have multiple Traffic Managers.

A three-tiered traffic or workflow system often has a Supervisor, a Manager and one or more Assistant Traffic Managers. Smaller agencies typically only have a single Traffic Manager and, if they’re lucky, an Assistant (or “co-Manager”).

The following grid outlines the various responsibilities that fall under the purview of “traffic.” If you’re the sole Traffic Manager of your agency, you may find yourself performing functions that cross all three columns.

 

Responsibility           Supervisor           Manager           Assistant
Provide effective system management
Oversee Traffic Manager(s), Asst. Traffic Manager(s)
Evolve the traffic system to meet agency needs
Aid management in evaluating ability to absorb work
Seek new traffic processes to increase efficiency
Improve inter-department communication
Ensure consistency across all projects
Possess strong managerial skills
Possess in-depth knowledge of all agency disciplines
Possess overall knowledge of clients, their businesses
Possess working knowledge of external resources
Possess strong written, verbal communication skills
Effectively, persistently communicate with team
Possess strong organizational skills
Possess an attention to detail
Gain respect from both peers, subordinates
Remain impartial to all people issues
Act positively under pressure
Interface with all internal agency departments
Assist Traffic Supervisor in department management
Assist Traffic Supervisor with system implementation
Physically move projects throughout the agency
Obtain precise project details at project inception
Develop accurate Workback Schedules
Carefully monitor budgetary limitations
Carefully monitor timing limitations
Train new hires, inexperienced employees
Open Job Numbers
Counsel creative department in job assignment
Expedite “crisis” jobs
Monitor stalled jobs, move them forward
Provide continuity in times of illness, vacation, etc.
Attend internal creative, status meetings
Attend internal campaign kickoff meetings
Obtain sign-offs on all work moving through the agency
Oversee traffic for all new business opportunities
Check IOs, ensure materials are sent in a timely manner

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