Category: Hours and Schedule

Integration with Google Calendar

Simplifythis provides bi-directional integration with Google calendar.  Using the Google calendar sync capability, the Simplifythis calendar of each staff can be synced with their Google calendar.  Follow these steps to enable sync for a staff:

  1. Go to Staff tab and select the staff whose calendar you want to sync.
  2. Click on the action icon and select the option to start sync with Google calendar.
  3. Select the first option : Authenticate with Google.
  4. You’ll see a list of all the calendars that this staff has.  Select the calendar you would want to sync with, and save.

From here on, Simplifythis will automatically create an event for all the new appointments that are created for this staff.  A few things to note about this integration:

1.  Appointments that were created before establishing sync will not sync with Google calendar.

2. All appointments created for this staff after establishing sync will also be created on Google calendar.

3. While showing availability of the staff to clients during booking process, Simplifythis will check with both Google calendar as well as Simplifythis calendar, and only show those slots that are available on both calendars.

4.  If you create an event directly on Google calendar, it will not show up on Simplifythis calendar. However, it will still block staff availability when a client looks for slots during the booking process.  In other words, a client will not be able to book an appointment for the time that is blocked on Google calendar.

5.  All events (including those marked as available) on your Google calendar will block your availability on Simplifythis.

How Schedules Work

Simplifythis provides an easy to manage and yet very flexible schedule system.  This is a quick and dry overview of features of schedule.

Who’s Schedule : You can create  separate schedule for the whole business,( referred to as ‘Main Schedule’) , for a location, or for a staff.  If a staff follows the same schedule as that of a location, you don’t need to create a separate schedule for this staff.  Simplifythis will automatically use the schedule of the location that the staff belongs  to in case there is no schedule for this staff.  Extending the same notion, if a location follows the same schedule as that of the main business, then there is no need to create a separate schedule for the location.

Schedule Effective From : While creating a schedule, you’ll notice that you need to specify ‘Effective From’ date.  This is the date that the schedule becomes effective from.  You can create several schedules in advance with separate ‘Effective From’ dates.  This works well if you have separate schedule for spring, or summer, or holidays etc.  Now, given so many schedules, you must be wondering which one is going to be used on any particular date.  Simplifythis will pick the latest schedule that starts prior to any give date.  Another way to look at it  is that a schedule expires when it finds another schedule starting.

Let’s go through an example to understand this better.  Say you have 3 schedules, one starting Jan 1, 2011, another one starting May 1, 2011, and the third one starting on Sep. 1, 2011.  Then for all the days between Jan 1 and April 30 (both inclusive), Simplifythis will use the first schedule. All days between May 1 and August 31 (both inclusive), will use the second schedule and so on.

Repeating Schedules : While most people keep a weekly repeating schedule, we have also come across businesses with schedules that repeat every two week or every three week.  When you create a schedule (be it for a staff, location, or main business), it defaults to repeating every week.  However, you have an option to add additional week(s).  So, if you want a schedule that repeats itself every 2 weeks, just specify the hours for each of the two weeks, select an effective from date, and save the schedule.

To further illustrate the use of schedules, let’s look at some of the common scenarios.

I run a solo massage therapy practice.  I work 5 days a week (Tue  – Sat) from 10 to 8 with a 1 hour lunch break from 2 PM to 3  PM.

Add a main schedule that repeats every week. Un-check Sunday and Monday, and for remaining days of the week, specify two blocks of hours : 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM.

I plan on taking a dance class from 6 to 8 on Wednesdays and will need to close early. 
Add a new schedule and modify hours for Wednesday such that it looks like 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM.

I have just hired another therapist.  She will be working on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays and will have her own hours.
Add the new therapist as a staff member. Create a schedule for her that is effective from her date of joining. Un-check Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.  Specify hours for Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.

I want to take every other Saturday off.
Create a new schedule for yourself from the Staff section.  Make this schedule repeat every two week. Edit the schedule for second week and un-check Saturday.

I will be closing early during holidays.
Create a new schedule with the appropriate ‘Effective From’ date near the holidays.  Select desired hours for each of the weekday.

Managing Classes and Group Bookings

This post guides you through managing your classes and bookings using Simplifythis by describing all the activities related to class booking and how to perform them.

Setting up a new class

Setup a new class by going to Classes->Class List and then clicking on  ‘+ Class’ button from the toolbar.  You can learn about the interpretation of various parameters in class setup form by going to this link.  Save the class, and  then create a schedule for the class by clicking  on Schedule tab. If the class repeats itself several times during a week, you can also add as many recurring schedules as you require.

Booking a client for a class

Clients can book a class online from the booking page (more on this on the booking page section), or you can book/register them yourself.  To register a client for courses, go to Classes->Class List, select the course and then click on the ‘Add’ icon to register to client to the class.  Please note that the Add icon will be invisible/inactive for those courses that are closed.

Charging for a class

While charging for a course, you’ll charge the participant for the whole course at a time.  However, for standalone classes, you’ll be charging them for each individual class that they attend.  To charge for a course, select the course by going to Classes->Class List, select the course and then click on the green ‘money’ icon.

To charge clients for individual classes, go to Classes->Upcoming Schedule, select the class that you want to charge for, and click on the roster icon to see the list of clients registered for that class.  Select the ones that you want to charge to and then click on the ‘Charge It’ button on the right hand side.

Taking attendance

To mark who has attend a class and who has not, all you need to do is go to Classes->Upcoming Schedule, search for the class that you want to take attendance for, and click on the roster to see the list of participants registered for that class.  Select the ones that you want to mark as attended and then click on ‘Mark as Attended’ button on the right.  All the selected participants will be marked as attended.

Removing a client from a class/Canceling a booking

People change their mind, or run into schedule conflicts and may call you in to cancel their booking.  To remove them from the class and make room for others, all you need to do is go Classes->Class List for courses, select the course, click on the roster icon (view booking) to see the participant list.  Select the one that you want to remove, click on ‘More Action’ and then cancel the booking.  Similarly, if you want to cancel booking for a standalone class, go to Classes->Upcoming Schedule, select the class, click on the roster icon and cancel booking from ‘More Actions’.

Viewing all classes taken by a client

Need to view what classes a client has booked? Just go to Contacts  section, select the contact and click on the Lens icon (view details) and navigate to Appt/Classes  tab.  You’ll see all the appointments and classes booked by this client in 30 days.  You can then further look for a specific booking by filtering by date range.

Adding a note to a student record

Other than adding notes directly to a client record by going to Contacts section, you can also add notes specific to a class booking. To do so, go to Classes->Upcoming Schedule,  select the class, click on the roster icon and then click on Notes column next to the client name.  You can then edit the exiting note if there is one, or add a new one.

Working with Schedules

1. Accessing Schedule

You can access main schedule by going to Appointment Book and then clicking on the ‘Edit Schedule’ button as shown below.  This will open up the schedule form where you can edit the main schedule for your business.

online appointment scheduling

Accessing main schedule

In this schedule form, you can modify the current schedule, or add a new schedule that will be effective in the future.

Remember- if you operate from only one location or all your staff have same hours, this is the only schedule you would need to manage. If, however, you need to modify schedule for a location, you can

2. Adding/Changing hours for a day

To change working hours for a day, click on ‘Edit’ next to the hours, change the start and end time and click on Save.  To add another block of hours for same weekday, click on Add button on the same form. Make sure that the new block of hours that you are adding does not overlap with the existing block.  Take a look at the image below to understand how to adjust hours for  a weekday.

Day Schedule

Day Schedule Form

Repeat this process to adjust hours for the remaining days  of the week.  Once you have taken care of hours for each day of the week, click on Save Schedule button to save the schedule.  If you are working with Staff schedule, you can also choose a location for these hours.

3. Other features of schedule

Effective Date If you are creating a schedule that will be effective in future, you can specify the schedule effective date.  Any schedule prior to this effective date will automatically end on this date and this schedule will become effective.

Schedule Name  You can give a friendly name to a schedule so that you can easily identify it.  For example, Fall 2011 or Winter 2011.

Schedule Repeatability  By default, a schedule repeats every week.  However, if your schedule repeats every 2 week or every 3 week, then you can add additional weeks to your schedule and specify hours for each week.

Additional Articles

1.  Managing Schedules and Hours – Learn all about schedules and how they work, especially if you have several staffs and multiple locations.

 

Understanding Schedule

Simplifythis provides an easy to manage and yet very flexible schedule system.  This is a quick and dry overview of features of schedule.

Who’s Schedule : You can create  separate schedule for the whole business,( referred to as ‘Main Schedule’) , for a location, or for a staff.  If a staff follows the same schedule as that of a location, you don’t need to create a separate schedule for this staff.  Simplifythis will automatically use the schedule of the location that the staff belongs  to in case there is no schedule for this staff.  Extending the same notion, if a location follows the same schedule as that of the main business, then there is no need to create a separate schedule for the location.

Schedule Effective From : While creating a schedule, you’ll notice that you need to specify ‘Effective From’ date.  This is the date that the schedule becomes effective from.  You can create several schedules in advance with separate ‘Effective From’ dates.  This works well if you have separate schedule for spring, or summer, or holidays etc.  Now, given so many schedules, you must be wondering which one is going to be used on any particular date.  Simplifythis will pick the latest schedule that starts prior to any give date.  Another way to look at it  is that a schedule expires when it finds another schedule starting.

Let’s go through an example to understand this better.  Say you have 3 schedules, one starting Jan 1, 2011, another one starting May 1, 2011, and the third one starting on Sep. 1, 2011.  Then for all the days between Jan 1 and April 30 (both inclusive), Simplifythis will use the first schedule. All days between May 1 and August 31 (both inclusive), will use the second schedule and so on.

Repeating Schedules : While most people keep a weekly repeating schedule, we have also come across businesses with schedules that repeat every two week or every three week.  When you create a schedule (be it for a staff, location, or main business), it defaults to repeating every week.  However, you have an option to add additional week(s).  So, if you want a schedule that repeats itself every 2 weeks, just specify the hours for each of the two weeks, select an effective from date, and save the schedule.

To further illustrate the use of schedules, let’s look at some of the common scenarios.

I run a solo massage therapy practice.  I work 5 days a week (Tue  – Sat) from 10 to 8 with a 1 hour lunch break from 2 PM to 3  PM.

Add a main schedule that repeats every week. Un-check Sunday and Monday, and for remaining days of the week, specify two blocks of hours : 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM.

I plan on taking a dance class from 6 to 8 on Wednesdays and will need to close early. 
Add a new schedule and modify hours for Wednesday such that it looks like 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM and 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM.

I have just hired another therapist.  She will be working on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays and will have her own hours.
Add the new therapist as a staff member. Create a schedule for her that is effective from her date of joining. Un-check Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.  Specify hours for Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.

I want to take every other Saturday off.
Create a new schedule for yourself from the Staff section.  Make this schedule repeat every two week. Edit the schedule for second week and un-check Saturday.

I will be closing early during holidays.
Create a new schedule with the appropriate ‘Effective From’ date near the holidays.  Select desired hours for each of the weekday.

I run a solo business, but work from two locations.
First, add both your locations by going to Settings->Locations.  Then go to Staff and edit your schedule.  Click on ‘Edit’ next to a weekday. This will show you a form to adjust hours and locations for that weekday. Select the Custom Hours option.  Click on ‘Edit Hour’ icon (a clock) and then adjust the hours and select location.  Click on Save to save the hour block, and the click on Save again to save the schedule for the day.  Repeat this for each day of the week, and then save the schedule.

 

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