Appointment scheduling software enables professionals and businesses to manage setting appointments and bookings. The software falls into two categories; web-based systems and desktop applications. In both cases, the scheduling software serves to integrate employees, members, and customer data as well as analyze calendar data on an organization’s calendar system which is connected to a master database.
The desktop applications involve licensed programs that are installed and maintained on the user’s computer hardware. These programs are robust in features and can be easily adjusted to suit an individual’s or business specifications. To schedule an appointment, a customer has to contact the organization to find out when there is available time after which they book their appointment. However, desktop applications lack an online portal for staff and customer access. The end user is also obligated to update the programs as well as undertake maintenance practices periodically. Desktop applications are quickly fading out since they don’t necessary simplify the process of booking an appointment.
Web-based systems are provided by service providers who offer hosted software solutions, usually through a web browser. They have appointment scheduling tools, and customers are allowed to book their own appointments. Customers using this platform access their usual schedules conveniently and book appointments online over the internet.
Web-based systems are easy, quick and affordable for anyone to use. An organization has a website where their clients log on to when they want to schedule an appointment. On the website customers go to the ”schedule an appointment tab” which opens an appointments client schedule. The customer then finds the service they require and sees when the service is available. If it is available, they select the time, date, service and opening that suits their specific needs and falls within their schedule. The client then enters their contact information and confirms the appointment. The contact information could be their email or mobile number depending on the organization.
There is no need for a confirmation from the organization about the appointment since once the website allows someone to book, it means their appointment have been accepted. However, some organizations send customers a confirmation to assure them they are ready for them. A day or two before the scheduled appointment, an email is sent to the client to remind them of their appointment. This also provides an avenue for the client to cancel the appointment if they are no longer interested in the service.
Customer Appointment Management Software
A special type of a web-based system is the customer appointment management software used by companies with a large mobile workforce. The software automatically routes and schedules all appointment arrivals. The software is powered by algorithms that learn the mobile employees work patterns and later predict a service technician time of arrival. Customers usually give the technicians a 60-minute delay window. Customer appointment management software cuts on expenditure as it requires little IT support and even less maintenance.
Appointments scheduling software allows people to manage their own schedules. Staff can see their appointments online and clients book appointments when it is most convenient for them. This, in turn, leads to good time management and provision of satisfactory services. Setting up schedules is fast and takes 5 to 30 minutes depending on the complexity of one’s calendar.