Communication is critical for effective teams, and meetings are essential for effective communication. So scheduling meeting rooms should be quick and easy, right?
It's often not. Between finding an appropriate space, determining who should be included, what resources are needed and who to notify, scheduling dozens of meetings each month can eat into valuable time. If you're booking spaces for lessons or social events, the frustrations are the same.
The best way to streamline this additional task is through automation. This guide is designed to help software buyers learn the functionality and applications of room scheduling software so businesses and individuals can book rooms quickly and move on with their day.
We'll cover the following topics:
As we mentioned, scheduling meetings involves gathering rooms, resources and people. Room scheduling software is designed to coordinate these various parts so planners can schedule with awareness of timing or resource conflicts.
No matter what type of room scheduling or reservations you're making, software makes the process quicker and simpler. This includes:
These capabilities benefit everyone when used organization-wide, as the software offers a shared view into which spaces are in-use or claimed for a specific time in the future. And permission settings allow managers to restrict access to scheduling tools to avoid confusion.
A list of recent users in Skedda
Most vendors in this space offer similar functionality, so the biggest factors in your decision will include ease-of-use and cost. We'll review the common functionality below.
|Booking calendar||Allows users to schedule meetings or events with a few clicks, and schedules can be dragged and dropped to switch dates or times. Customizable views (by day, week or month) and color-coded events offer comprehensive views at a glance. This view serves as a dashboard for anyone using the system.|
|Notifications||Once an event is set, users can set up and send customized notification emails or texts to attendees to confirm the details of the meeting. Some notifications include registration or confirmation buttons so planners know how many people are attending.|
|Space management||Spaces in an office are limited, so room scheduling software keeps track of which are available so users can always find a spot based on real-time information.|
|Equipment scheduling||Business meeting and special event planners often need to reserve equipment in addition to a room. Scheduling software allows users to make sure resources are available on certain days by reserving them and linking them to an event.|
|Self-service portal||Managers can allow any employee to use the system to schedule rooms or workspaces through various methods, including a web browser, mobile device, email and more.|
|Payments||Some users own the spaces and use the software to rent them out. These users can integrate online payment capabilities so that customers can pay and reserve conveniently.|
|User management and permissions||Manage user access to different capabilities and grant full access to managers. Administrators can also see who is using the system and put them into specific groups for easier scheduling.|
|Digital signage||This type of software is often used to manage space for conventions or other large gatherings with multiple rooms and start times. Some vendors include digital signage capabilities—for example, planners can use tablet computers at each room to display important details, such as start time, reservation status, name of the event, room number or a daily schedule.|
|Analytics||Administrators can view data gathered over time to identify key indicators that can help optimize the use of space. For example, find out which rooms are used most or least often and peak usage hours.|
Room scheduling software is adaptable to most applications and industries, but the specific set of features you need can depend on your business:
Facilities managers. These professionals are responsible for creating a productive atmosphere for employees in an office building, and a critical part of this is managing spaces. Facilities managers can use room scheduling software to enable workers to reserve rooms, equipment and desks (called office hoteling, which can reduce facility costs).
Facilities managers of a college campus can also use software in a similar way to schedule and manage speaking or student association events in buildings across campus. Some systems can integrate existing student information system (SIS) data to help determine the most appropriate classroom assignments.
Event coordinators. Those who plan events, such as weddings or conferences, can use room scheduling software to send confirmation emails and receive registration information to better gauge attendee numbers. During events, the coordinator can use the system to ensure space is utilized efficiently.
Instructors and tutors. Independent teachers and tutors can use room scheduling software to manage their own private lessons. Students can access the online scheduling wizard to make appointments.
Users with their own studios and team of instructors can use it in the same way, but also be able to assign lessons and other teachers to specific rooms.
Pricing models for room scheduling software are generally consistent, but buyers should be aware of other limitations or added costs they may encounter when seeking a system.
Most vendors offer room scheduling software with a basic fee per month pricing, and these usually have limitations on the number of rooms to manage or number of users who can use the system.
However, it's not uncommon to see special pricing models that allow users to pay a flat fee for each event they schedule. These versions typically have more strict limitations on functionality.
Finally, keep in mind vendors often offer three or more versions of their systems, with the functionality increasing along with the pricing. It's crucial to carefully evaluate the differences in each version of the software to find the capabilities you truly need, and avoid paying for features you won't use.
Our service is simple and 100% free to customers like you because software vendors pay us when we connect them with quality leads. You save time and get great advice. Vendors get great referrals. It's a win for everyone!