For years, Thomas Buckborough had been looking for ways to add structure to his company's in-house design process. His quest finally bore fruit in the form of this “design project summary” sheet, first shown to him by a member of his peer group and then adapted to fit his company's culture and systems. “The intent of the form is to give anybody who looks at it a quick idea of the project,” Buckborough says.

“Anybody” includes the project designer, who fills out the form and refers to it from time to time to check progress; the company's selections manager, who uses it to track the time frame she has to shop for products with clients; the production manager/estimator, so he can plan his schedule; and Buckborough himself, who uses it to check his company's progress and to inform field staff of what's in the pipeline.