With the advent of technology, most business owners are working hard to automate their manual business processes and day-to-day operations using available software solutions and mobile apps. Irrespective of the type of company or organization you run, you can opt for the best business software solution that will help you to grow your business and take it to the next level.
Not only this but many small organizations and enterprises have to manage their daily schedules, appointments, and job requests manually in the excel sheet, google spreadsheets, google calendar, international paper forms, files, emails, and Office 365. But it’s high time to opt for the best scheduling app for small business that automates the process of scheduling and managing appointments.
Using a scheduling app, businesses of different industries can get a lot of advantages like automating the process, successfully employee management, shift planning, track customer satisfaction level, and a lot more. Moving ahead, let’s talk about appointment scheduling apps in a simple language and how to choose the best work schedule solution for your company. Here’s the content table to click on the specific section that you want to check.
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What is a Scheduling Application in a Simple Language?
In a simple language, the best appointment scheduling application is one that allows businesses, organizations, and top service companies to create, manage, and track schedules of all the employees along with their deadlines. The mobile application gives the ability to the team members to check the schedules, reserve appointments, events, or services as per their availability.
For instance, if you are running any service-based company or any other company where you have to manage a team of employees, work schedules, task list, whereabouts, track daily reporting, communicate with the members, then mobile schedule app is the best option that helps you to create schedules for all the teams and share with them in real-time.
In addition to this, the mobile app solution will help you to automate and streamline the process of appointment scheduling to increase the overall productivity of employees. The software allows companies to manage hourly workers for any urgent and specific tasks.
Such mobile apps are known for tracking the total hours and working days of the employees, including vacation time, sick time, compensation time, and break time. It gives real-time alerts to the admin if there are any conflicts in anyone’s timing or hours.
When it comes to selecting the best work schedule application for your business, you might find a lot of problems because there are various apps that claim to deliver an exclusive range of features include and benefits. But how would you ensure that you are selecting the right solution? Don’t worry, we are here to help you. We have provided a complete guide on selecting the right mobile app for appointment scheduling that will take care of almost everything. So, let’s get started.
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A Guide to Choose the Best Scheduling Application For Your Business
1. Automate the Entire Scheduling Process
Creating worksheets, schedules, and workflows in the excel sheets, paper-forms, and files become the oldest way to manage your workforces. If you have a number of team members in your company, then you can’t manage their daily work and tasks manually. Time has gone when you were calling your people in the cabin to explain the work that they have to perform and give the deadline.
As we have mentioned that it’s time to go with online scheduling software for small business that will not only help you in planning but also help you in making schedules, assignments, job requests and share it with your team only. Without leaving your cabin, you can communicate with a staff member, explain work, track their daily progress.
From creating to managing and tracking, the small business scheduling app helps you in everything by automating the entire day-to-day operations. Thus, it is a must that you choose one such app platforms for your company that is available on contracts or monthly pricing. It automates the daily work scheduling so that you can manage it with multiple locations and overall increase revenue.
2. It Must Meet Day-to-day Scheduling Challenges
While creating schedules and assigning jobs to your employees, you must be facing a lot of challenges like unaware of employees’ availability, shift timing of a particular team member, current tasks, progress report, skill-set, and expertise. When you create any important task, then you must want to assign it to any experienced employee who can accomplish it in less time and with accuracy.
But what if you don’t know the availability of that employee, his current tasks, and other important things. You might call him in the cabin and discuss all these things. These are some of the day-to-day challenges that you might be facing and wasting hours that you can spend on other business growth strategies.
Hence, it is a must that you select an appointment scheduling software that meets all these business challenges and provide a quick solution. Using an appointment scheduling software, you can assign all the jobs to employees as per their expertise, track their previous & current tasks, look into reporting, process payments from clients, time and attendance tracking, deal management, and get customer feedback in real-time.
3. It Must Be Easy-to-use and User-friendly
The third point that you can look into the appointment scheduling app is that it must be easy-to-use and user-friendly, allowing non-technical business owners to access the solution without facing any issue.
If the software solution is highly advanced in terms of technology, design, features, and functionalities, then businesses and owners, who are not technically sound, will surely find it difficult to access the solution in their day-to-day life for appointment scheduling service.
No matter how much training they will get for the solution, if they have to remember the ways to schedule work and simple assignments, they will not prefer to use it for a long time. They might find it a time-consuming and difficult process and as a result, they will ditch the software. So, it is a must that the management CRM software for client appointments and client management is user-friendly and provides a richer appointment scheduling experience than ever.
4. It Must Be Flexible and Scalable Solution
No matter whether home service businesses or any other type of company is making use of an appointment scheduling tool, it is a must that the system is flexible and scalable enough. It must be flexible so that it can be easily customized with specific features, functionalities, marketing tools, and reporting tools. With specific tools and technologies, companies can make the system to meet their specific business needs.
For instance, any small fitness studio that also offers face-to-face training sessions must have different booking requirements than any service-based company that provides installation, repair, and maintenance services, allowing customers to book appointments with experts and get real-time updates and email notifications by week and per month.
If you want your customers to look into the menu of services and specify the location for appointments, then an appointment booking solution comes with the flexibility feature. It will allow you to customize such aspects so that you don’t have any problem while creating schedules.
5. Offers an Exclusive Range of Features and Functionalities
While selecting and finalizing any software solution for your business, it is must that you consider the number of features and functionalities that it offers. You can finalize the appointment booking software that has the maximum number of features to make things easier for you as an admin. You can take out a few minutes so that you can familiarize yourself with different features and functionalities of the appointment scheduling apps.
You also need to spend time on the functionalities that it offers and what they do for your business. If you are clearly understanding the features and getting a complete idea like how it is helpful for service businesses, then you can go with that particular online appointment scheduling software.
While looking for the appointment booking and staff scheduling software solution with multiple locations, make sure that you check for these important features and functionalities:
- Group schedule: It allows users to manage group employee scheduling with different employee scheduling templates including details like a phone number of the employee, fields, deadline, urgency, any special note about price, etc. It must provide an appointment scheduling page, allowing users to do class scheduling, rescheduling management, and manage the appointment scheduling process per month and weekly with just a click.
- Sync with external calendars: The most essential feature is calendar sync, allowing admin to sync with all the external calendars like Google calendar, Microsoft Outlook, Apple Calendar, Office 365, and other available tools.
- Customer support: It must provide 24/7 customer support so that you can solve your queries and issues that you might have related to the solution. You can discuss on a one-to-one chat option and get a quick resolution for the same. Discuss any problem with customer history on a weekly and per month wise.
- Real-time alerts and appointment reminders: The app must provide real-time alerts like Google calendar and client text reminders about appointments per month. Whether you want to get SMS reminders or email reminders per month or weekly, you can set the reminders as per your preference in advance to smooth the communication.
- Dashboard view: There must be a dashboard view, giving you overall updates about your company, individuals, tasks, reports, notes & visitor data, emergency booking, promotions & activities, and other add-ons. You can get a quick insight into your business and give attention to the important activities.
6. Offers Multiple Points to Access Solution
If you have decided to adopt customer appointment manager or appointment management software, then it is a must that you look for the solution that offers multiple access points so that your employees, clients, and managers can easily access it. The best application will always give you different options and supports mobile devices, desktop, laptop, and tablet, or smartphone.
No matter whether your team members or field technicians have an Android device or iOS device, the appointment scheduling software will run smoothly in the device and allow them to access the schedule instantly. In fact, there are many software solutions that provide a website, mobile applications, and web solution so that your employees and customers can instantly access the solution and get per month notifications. Whatever device you and your team use, the more options always sound better.
7. Real-time SMS and Email Notifications
Whether you want to use an appointment scheduling software for managing your customers or employees of your company, you might be facing a problem when they forget their appointment or booked schedule. Right? At the end time, they do not show up and it creates a big problem for your service-based company.
Fortunately, companies can solve the no-show problem through automated email notifications and SMS reminders in real-time that are scheduled per month. Today, almost all the software solutions provide features of real-time automated email marketing efforts and push notifications, reminding all the employees or customer appointments and schedules that they can check and avoid a no-show.
When you create a new schedule or work time table for your employees, all you can do is, send them a website reminder messages and notify them by email address, text message, or both, reminding them to check the schedule.
8. Sync with External Calendars and Tools
So, many startups and companies that make use of external calendars and tools like Google Calendar, Apple Calendar, Microsoft Outlook, and Office 365 so that they can keep track of their important assigned tasks.
But the important feature that you need to look in the gym management software solution is, syncing with external calendars. By syncing with your existing tools and calendars, the system automatically sends the events or schedules to your external calendar without having you to do it manually.
This way, you can keep track of every appointment booking process and work that has been scheduled by per month wise. In fact, it will also give email reminders, alerts, and updates about your upcoming events. Moreover, the online appointment tool will help you to have your personal as well as business schedule in one convenient location so that you don’t miss a single thing.
9. Analysis, Reporting & Client Management
While selecting the best appointment scheduling platform for your company, you make sure that it gives real-time analysis and reporting data so that you can give a quick look at your business, tracking everything.
The solution must have reporting and analysis tools, allowing small business owners to gather project data and create reports on resources, resource allocation, the performance of the members, work orders, workflow, expenses, product reviews, and more.
By having a quick look into all this data and information, the admin can make instant decisions for the business and take it to the next level. Without making reports and doing confirmation email analysis manually, the tool will provide pre-defined reports that they can generate as per their need. In fact, they can generate an email report of a particular time period, including client information that might help them to understand the company’s performance from all angles.
10. Data Collection Security
When you are deciding about the solution that you can opt for your company, the last point that you need to consider in mind is data collection security. The solution must be safe and secure, allowing you to store your data without any problem of leaking and hacking.
No matter how important or least important the data is, it must be a safe and secure solution that comes with fully encrypted and offers secure cloud-based client data storage. You need to be quite diligent when it comes to your client’s information and data security. And selecting the solution should not be difficult as you know what to look for and it will help you to be on your way to business success using new scheduling services.
So, these are the top 10 things that you should consider when deciding about the business software for appointment bookings and scheduling work. Moving ahead, let’s have a quick look at the best examples of scheduling software systems that small businesses can opt for. Let’s start.
Examples of Best Appointment Scheduling Software For Small Business
Schedulicity is the most popular online appointment scheduling app for all your services from bang cuts to barre classes, massage therapists to healthcare providers, barbers to beauty centers, or any other business website. Using this website and application solution, the businesses can schedule appointments for the services and manage the entire business in one platform.
Moreover, Schedulicity is a perfect fit for any local professionals from 50+ industries, including Instagram’s famous hair salons to nail artists and gyms to service providers or any industry. Just use this solution that comes with website and application, receive appointments, manage workers with their schedules, provide service, and receive payment from the safe method. Here are some top features of small business schedule app in a free trial:
- A dedicated booking page to manage bookings
- Calendar management
- Payment processing
- Customer feedback and product customer reviews
- Group Meetings
2. Square Appointments
Square Appointments is also a widely used work schedule app that not only manages your appointments but also manages your team members along with their daily tasks. The best appointment scheduling app has made it easier to streamline the way you manage calendar, staff, and online booking pages across multiple locations. It almost has everything that you need to run your business successfully from anywhere and anytime and reputation management.
Comes with a lot of advanced functionalities, this application has an online booking system that is easy for you and your customers to book services, a point-of-sale (POS) to track customers’ details, customer service support for automatic appointment reminders, seamless billing, and invoicing process and a lot more. Here are some exclusive features that you can enjoy in the free version mobile app:
- Schedule and book appointments
- Accounting software applications that accept payments in real-time
- Connect with customers online
- Manage no-show problems and appointment types
- Marketing automation platform for marketing management
You can find the best scheduling solution in Gigabook membership software that will entrepreneurs and a business owner to schedule clients for services, group activities, take payments, send reminders, inventory management, and clients schedule appointments.
Using this cost-effective solution that is like Appointlet, you can save time and effort by automating appointment management, meeting, receive payments online, and automate invoice jobs. Reduce no-shows with reminders and alerts that improve overall client experience and process payments with just a single click.
Gigabook is one such mobile app solution that helps you to manage your business from anywhere and anytime whether you are in the canteen, on your desk, or home. Here are some of the effective features of this scheduler solution:
- To-do lists and best appointment scheduling management
- Client Portal to manage client retention, feedback, and reviews
- Booking widget and reminder emails
- Customization options and integration
- Calendar sync with multiple calendar integrations
So, these are the most popular software solutions that are known for their features & functionalities, latest technologies, and a free plan. Apart from these mentioned apps, here are some other options, including Jobber software, Acuity Scheduling, Zendesk, Calendly, Appointy, Scheduleonce, Simplybook me, 10to8, Vagaro, MindBody, and Appointmentplus that can be used by solopreneurs and fortune 500 companies.
In any case, if you have some common questions in mind, don’t worry, here we have tried to answer your general questions that might solve your queries or issues that you have.
01. What's the best scheduling app?
Answer: As we have already said that there are various best appointment scheduling software solutions and each scheduling app for small business has its own features like benefits and uniqueness to provide. Depending upon your business needs and type, you can choose one such app compatible with Hipaa that suffices your daily requirements and delivers an excellent experience.
02. What is the best free scheduling software?
Answer: If you are looking for free appointment booking software to manage appointments and daily work employee schedules, then don’t forget to explore Setmore. This scheduling software allows booking appointments in just a few simple taps, access customer data, and manage staff calendars from multiple locations. Just explore this solution and know how it is helpful for your company.
03. What are some of the must-have features of scheduling software?
Answer: Here’s the list of features that are must to consider when selecting an appointment scheduling solution or work schedule management application. Features like:
- Scheduling Features and Appointment Confirmations
- Real-time Collaboration and Reservations
- Emergency Bookings and Multiple Payment Gateways like Braintree and Paypal
- Cancellations and Rescheduling Management by Per Month
- Social Media Accounts Integrations (Facebook, Instagram)
- Custom Reports to Manage Meeting Types
- Business Analytics & Waitlists tracking
04. What are some of the main advantages of using scheduling software?
Answer: Not only one but there are various benefits that you can get by using a scheduling solution for your business. Here are the top advantages that you get:
- Reduce Communications Gap
- Automate the Whole Business Process and Operations
- Save Time and Effort on Member Management
- Keep Everyone on the Same Page
- Reduce No-shows and Conflicts
- Alerts You to Uncovered Shifts
- Increase Employee Engagement and Work Satisfaction Level
On a Concluding Note
As you have gone through the complete guide on how to select the best scheduling application in 2020, it’s time to choose the right option that benefits your business in many ways and expand it worldwide. Along with the guide, you might have checked the examples of top apps that are doing well in the market and trusted by thousands of companies and organizations across the world.
Before you finalize any software your company, remember you analyze your company and its needs, challenges that you are facing, make a list of features that you expect, and monthly budget that you can spend on it. Overall, you need to choose one such tool and system that takes your business to the next level. However, if you have any query or confusion related to the mentioned information, you can connect with us through our contact us page, following our contact information and we will provide a quick solution for the same.