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Start Accepting Appointments
Start Accepting Appointments

Learn how to set your availability and get started accepting appointments from students, colleagues, and other important stakeholders.

Michael Stephenson avatar
Written by Michael Stephenson
Updated over a week ago

Overview

You can customize your Appointment settings to provide an efficient and flexible booking experience for your invitee while saving yourself time by reducing manual processes. This article will walk you through configuring everything you need to start accepting appointments.

Video Guide


Accessing Your Availability + Personal Settings

Your availability and personal settings can be configured in Appointment Settings which is accessed by the more icon (three vertical dots).

  • Engagement > Appointments > ⋮ > Availability

  • Engagement > Appointments > ⋮ > My Settings


Configuring Your Custom Link

This feature allows you to generate a custom appointment booking link specific to you and your availabilities. You can copy your link, hyperlink it in your email signature, create a QR code to add to your business card or office door, and so much more.

  1. Navigate to Engagement > Appointments > > My Settings.

  2. Add a custom slug following the forward slash in My Link.

  3. Use the copy icon to copy your link to share and distribute as you wish.

@Captains/Admins: Determine a standard format for the custom URLs and direct your team members to use that when configuring their links to create consistency campus-wide (e.g., firstname.lastname, or firstinitial.lastname).


Connecting Your Calendar

When scheduling an appointment, before availability is displayed, Element451 will check your free time on the linked calendar. To link your calendar:

Step 1: Generate a Public ICS URL

  1. Open your email client (Gmail, Outlook, etc.) in a web browser.

  2. Configure your email settings to generate a public ICS URL. The process of obtaining this link will vary by your provider.

For a step-by-step guide on connecting a Google or Outlook calendar, see Connecting Your Calendar to Appointments.

Step 2: Import Calendar in Element451

  1. Navigate to Engagement > Appointments > > My Settings > Import Calendar

  2. Copy the URL and paste it into the Calendar URL box

  3. Click Save


Setting Your Availability

Your availability settings, together with your linked calendar feed, tell Element451 what date and time options to display to an invitee. Your availability is customized by event type, providing flexibility in managing your calendar.

  1. Navigate to Engagement > Appointments > > Availability.

  2. Click + Add Availability.

  3. Go line-by-line and configure the settings based on your preferences. Click on each heading below for explanations.

Configurations for Availability Settings

What appointment is this?

Collects the basic information about the appointment you are adding.

  • Name: The name of this appointment (e.g., College of Business - Advising). This name is displayed on your booking site, so keep this in mind when selecting a name. When invitees are directed to the booking site, they must find and choose the appointment of their choice.

  • Appointment Type: Think of Appointment Type as a template. You will select one from the drop-down list. Your Element451 Captain/Admin has pre-configured these. Once you select a Type, you may notice other information pre-populate.

  • Slug: This unique identifier is added at the end of your booking link. Instead of sending your invitee to your main booking site, the link will force scheduling this specific appointment. The slug is automatically generated using the appointment name, but you can change it.

  • Assignee: This will be defaulted to you. The assignee cannot be changed because users are responsible for their availability.

  • Active: Enabled by default, this tells Element451 that you want invitees to schedule this Appointment. Toggle it off if you want to hide it from the booking site. This is helpful if you have seasonal Appointments and need to pause scheduling until later.

  • Location Type: Will this be an in-person or virtual appointment? Note: The Location Type will pre-populate based on the Appointment Type selected, but you can change this.

  • Location: Where will this appointment take place? For an in-person meeting, you can provide the room or suite number. If it is a virtual meeting, you can drop in the meeting link or directions for joining the virtual call. Note: The location will pre-populate based on the Appointment Type settings but can be changed.

  • Description: Displayed on the booking site to describe the appointment to invitees.

When can people book this appointment?

Configures the settings that control how far in advance invitees can schedule appointments, the duration of the appointment, and the time zone.

  • Invitees can schedule: This determines how far in the future you want to allow invitees to schedule this appointment.

    • Rolling number of days into the future: This is the most commonly used setting. It opens your scheduling window for a specified number of calendar days into the future. For example, if two weeks were the furthest you wanted invitees to schedule, you would enter 14.

    • Within a date range: This allows you to select a beginning and end date for your scheduling window. This setting is helpful for temporary or seasonal scheduling, such as orientation or term-specific use cases.

    • Indefinitely into the future: This allows your scheduling window to be restriction-free and lets your invitees schedule as many days out as they'd like, so long as it complies with your linked calendar availability and date overrides.

  • Duration: How much time do you want to allocate to this appointment? You have preset options of 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, or 1 hour. Alternatively, you can set a custom duration.

  • Time Zone: The time zone where the meeting will be hosted.

Want to add time before or after your appointments?

Set your buffer time so that you have time to prepare for or wrap up other appointments. This will ensure you are not booked with back-to-back meetings.

  • Before: The amount of time you want free before a scheduled appointment

  • After: The amount of time you want free after a scheduled appointment

Scheduling Conditions

Prevent invitees from scheduling at the last minute. How far in advance (in minutes) would you like invitees to schedule? Here are some commonly used conditions:

  • 480 minutes (8 hours)

  • 720 minutes (12 hours)

  • 1440 minutes (24 hours)

  • 2160 minutes (36 hours)

  • 2880 minutes (48 hours)

  • 4320 minutes (72 hours)

Weekly Hours Settings

Set your weekly hours

Configures when to offer availability for this appointment.

  • Every day of the week can be customized for this appointment.

    • Click on the 🕑 clock icon to adjust the time.

    • If you want to block an entire day of the week, uncheck that day's box.

    • To add multiple time windows on the same day of the week, use the ➕ plus icon to add a block of time.

For example, if this was an academic advising appointment and you only advised on Tuesdays and Thursdays, you would use this setting to restrict availability to those two days by unchecking Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Then configure the time period(s) for each day.

Date overrides

If your availability temporarily differs from the weekly hours that you set in the above step, you can use this feature to override the date(s). For example, if you plan to only work a half-day next Thursday and Friday, you can set an override to adjust your availability for those two days.

Remember, if you link your calendar, Element451 will also check there for your availability. If you maintain your calendar and block off when you are out of the office, you do not need to use a date override.

Notifications

Element451 sends automated notifications (confirmation and reminder) for appointments. These notifications save you time by increasing workflow efficiency and reduce the risk of no-shows by reminding your invitees of their upcoming appointments.

Notification Settings

  • Sender Name: In your emails to the invitee, how do you want the sender's name to display in their inbox (e.g., your first and last name or the department name)?

  • Sender Email: Select one of your school's designated email addresses.

  • Reply Email Address Same as Sender: If an invitee replies to an email notification, do you want that reply sent to the above sender email address? If not, you can designate an email address in the following field, Reply Email.

  • Reply Email: Email responses will be delivered to this email address.

  • SMS Channel: Enables SMS notifications to be sent to your invitees.

We dive deeper into appointment notifications in a separate article, Appointment Notifications + Messages.

The system performs a final check on your calendar availability when the “Schedule Appointment” button is clicked to prevent any unexpected double bookings.

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