Drag is broadly used to delegate emails and tasks with virtual assistants. Among the key benefits of using Drag for this use case are:

Not needing to share your password with your assistant.
Not needing to share your entire inbox (and other aspects of your inbox such as folders / labels structure) with your assistant.
Being able to allow your assistant to reply to emails from your own email address.
Being able to review your assistant's draft emails before they are actually sent.
Being able to delegate emails AND tasks in the same tool.

This guide explains how to set up and operate Drag with your Virtual Assistant.

Contents:

How to set up Drag for email delegation
- Create Drag Boards and share them with your assistant.
- Categorize and organize delegated emails and tasks.
- Create templates to standardize your writing style.
- Create automations to save you time.
- Define the default email address for email replies.

How to operate Drag with a virtual assistant
- Control when and by whom tasks are getting done.
- Review draft responses before they are sent out.
- Add further context to tasks with notes, subtasks and internal chat .
- Add new tasks manually.

How to set up Drag for email delegation

Here's how to customize Drag to share emails and tasks with your virtual assistant.

Create Drag Boards and share them with your assistant

The first thing to do is create one or multiple Drag boards for all the delegated emails and/or tasks. But first, let's talk about the 2 different structures for delegating emails and tasks to virtual assistants:

Sharing your entire inbox: Some users need to share their entire inbox with their assistants. This is the case when assistants have an active role in running emails triage or conducting daily inbox reviews.

Sharing specific emails: Some users prefer assistants not to have access to their entire inboxes, but instead just to specific emails that should be delegated. This is the case for a more lightweight support from assistants to help reduce the burden of email management.

Depending on how you need to work with your assistant, the setup will be slightly different.

To share your entire inbox:

Turn Drag on in your inbox.
Invite your assistant to your inbox board.
Your assistant will get an email invite to install Drag and access the board you shared.

From there, your assistant will immediately have access to your entire inbox and to all new emails loading in real time.

To share specific emails:

Create an empty board.
Invite your assistant to the board.
Your assistant will get an email invite to install Drag and access the board you shared.

From there, your assistant will only have access to the emails or tasks that are added to this shared board.

Move emails to be delegated into the shared board or create new task cards (you can move cards manually into the board or create automations to move them automatically).

Your assistant does not need to be in the same domain as you to be able to share a board or to reply to emails on your behalf using Drag.

Drag boards can be viewed in kanban or list view. Here's how you can change between the views.

Categorize and organize delegated emails and tasks

It's crucial for you to know exactly how the virtual assistant is performing on their tasks, when you share your inbox with them. Is that urgent task done already? In which task is the assistant working on at the moment?

You can create a workflow to share with your assistant in 3 ways using Drag:

1. Customize columns/lists

Customize your columns (if you use Kanban view) or lists (using list view) to adapt Drag to your workflow with a virtual assistant. For example, it’s possible to split the boards into stages like these:
Outsourcing
Doing
For Approval
Backlog
Delete

Or if the virtual assistant prefers, they can divide the board into days of the week, with respective tasks and emails for each day, like this:



You can create your board according to your current workflow, with the names of the processes the virtual assistant usually runs through while working on your emails and tasks. To rename the columns/lists, simply click on their titles (on the top left). There will be an inline editing input field, just type the desired title and click outside the input field. The names will be auto-saved.

2. Use tags to classify emails and tasks

Use Drag shared tags to visually segment ToDo's. For example, tag cards with “High priority” and “Low Priority”. This makes it easier to know exactly what the assistant needs to focus on first.



You can easily filter your boards by tags, which is very handy when there are a lot of emails and tasks to handle on a board.

3. Color coding

It’s also possible to organize cards visually with color-coding. Each color can represent something the assistant needs to know with just a glance. For example, you can attribute a color to cards containing recurrent tasks, for example.

Extra tip: Create a fixed card with the colors and respective meanings to quickly help the assistant get used to them. In this example we created tasks with color emojis, and what the colors represented.



Create templates to standardize your writing style

If your assistant needs to reply to emails on your behalf, it's ideal that he/she follows a standardized process, as well as your tone of voice and communication style. In addition, they will likely need to send similar messages very often. For example, an email containing invoices or emails to decline or accept certain offers.

With Drag, we advise you use shared templates with your assistant for 2 reasons:

You can add sample replies with your own writing style for your assistant to use as a basis for his/her own messages, so they are consistent with your way of communicating.

It saves everybody's time in the sense that your assistant doesn't need to write similar messages over and over.

Here's how to set up shared email templates.

Create automations to save you time

Time is essential for both you and your assistant. So saving it leaves more time to focus on what it’s really important. You can automate several actions inside your Drag boards to save you time. Our automations allow your team to put lots of things in auto pilot.

A few examples include:
Sending automatic emails and follow ups, declining promotional offers, or unsolicited partnerships.
Assigning cards to the assistant automatically when the email subject contains specific terms.
Automatically deleting newsletter emails that you don’t need to handle manually.

Define the default email address for email replies

With Drag, your assistant can reply to emails either from your email address, or from their own assistant@ email address.

If most of the replies need to be sent as yourself@, you may want to set this account as the 'default reply', so that when your assistant clicks on "reply" in an email, the email recipient is by default, set as your email address.

Here's the step by step to set your reply default.

When your assistant replies to emails from your email address, the email receiver won't know it was sent by an assistant. It will look exactly like it would with you replying.

How to operate Drag with a virtual assistant

You have set up all your shared boards with your virtual assistant in Drag. Well done! 👍 Now, it's time to learn the best way to use it daily.

Control when and by whom tasks are getting done

With Drag, you can use assignments and due dates to ensure your assistant won’t miss any deadline or even let something undone.

1. Assignments

When you share a board with an assistant, it’s important to have transparency and know what tasks are being delegated or tackled by you.

If you created a board just for delegated tasks, this point is less relevant, as any cards moved to the shared boards are implicitly delegated to your assistant. However, if you are sharing your entire inbox but just some emails need to be delegated (or if you are working with multiple assistants), Drag's email assignment becomes very useful.

2. Due dates

Assistants need to meet deadlines constantly, so visual due dates may be a valuable resource to make sure deadlines are never missed. Assistants can also choose to have due dates integrated to their Google Calendar, besides the visual badge that is displayed on cards.



Review draft responses before they are sent out

Email templates are a great resource to align your assistant's language to your own. On top of that, Drag's shared drafts allow you to review drafts prepared by your assistant before they are actually sent out. You can even jump in and edit them directly, or just passively add comments to your assistant in the context of that specific email response.

Add further context to tasks with notes, subtasks and internal chat

You and your assistant need to be on the same page while working together, and Drag's collaboration features can totally make this smooth and simple. Read more about these features here.

1. Notes and Tasks tabs

You can type all the essential information and instructions for your virtual assistant in each card on your Drag board. Fill them on the tab "Notes" inside any card you open. You can also create a checklist of tasks the assistant must do on a certain project. You can find both tabs on the top of the email detailed view, next to the email title.

Example:
In the example below, there’s an email with a plan proposal for acquiring a new software that you were already considering. The assistant left a note with details of the software company, such as website, average ratings in directories, and recommendations from one partner you are familiar with. On the tab tasks, the assistant has steps she/he needs to follow to know more information about the company and to schedule a demo call with them.



2. Internal team chat

There's an internal team chat inside each card where you and your assistant can talk about any specific details or instructions on a task. Instead of going to a chat app to talk to them, wasting time on context switching, you can simply mention them on the chat box, as they can do the same.

Example:
Your assistant Jasmine is handling an email with an incredible offer from a software you wanted to purchase. You saw the email, and want to let the assistant know you want to schedule an appointment. Then just mention @Jasmine and ask her to book a demo call with the software company.



Add new tasks manually

Drag cards can contain emails or not. Drag automatically converts each email you receive into an email card, but you can also manually create new cards for tasks that came up through other channels. For example, your assistant may want to add her/his daily tasks or reminders to important work they need to perform, but didn't exactly arrive as emails. Here's how you can add new cards manually on Drag boards.



And now you and your assistant are all set up! By following this guide, you will be able to use Drag to manage emails together, with less manual processes, more security and a smooth workflow 👌.

Still need help? Our Support Team will love to help at support@dragapp.com.
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