One of the most fundamental concepts in TimeZest is the Appointment Type. An appointment type collects all the relevant information and settings for a type of appointment you might want to have with your clients, for example, a phone call or online meeting, so you can conveniently pick it in the TimeZest inside your PSA and have everything set just as you like.

TimeZest is set up by default with 4 appointment types that we think our users will find useful. These are:

  • A 15-minute Phone Call

  • A 30-minute Phone Call

  • A 30-minute Remote Access to PC

  • A 30-minute In-Person Appointment

You can edit any of these existing appointment types, and you can create as many new appointment types as you wish, except on the TimeZest free plan, which is limited to 1 appointment type.

Creating and Editing Appointment Types

To manage appointment types in TimeZest, go to the Appointment Types setting screen. You'll see a list of all appointment types.

  • To edit an existing appointment type, simply click on it.

  • To create a new appointment type, click Add New Appointment Type.

Clicking on New Appointment Type shows the following screen, where you enter the basic details of the new appointment type:

These are the basic settings that TimeZest requires to create an appointment type - you'll be able to edit all other settings on the next screen.

These settings are:

  • The internal name of the appointment type. This is what is used both internally, for example in the list in the TimeZest pod, and the notes TimeZest creates on the ticket.

  • The external name of the appointment type. This is optional, but if set, TimeZest will use this name when communicating with clients - for example, in the emails it sends them, and during the actual appointment selection workflow. If this is left blank, TimeZest will use the internal name with clients.

  • Defaults allow you to choose whether to start with the default values or to copy a previously created appointment type.

Once you click Create Appointment Type, you'll be shown the main editing screen for appointment types. This is divided into sections to make it easier to navigate the many settings for each appointment type - simply click on any section to expand it.

Appointment Details

These settings are the basic parameters of the Appointment:

  • The duration of the appointment. This is a required field.

  • For phone-based appointments, TimeZest can ask clients for, or even require, their best contact number. If this is selected, TimeZest will add a form field to the appointment confirmation screen asking for a phone number and include the given phone number on the internal note it creates.

  • Update ticket contact number controls whether TimeZest updates the phone number on the client's record within the ticket, ensuring the provided phone number is easily available. This is only available in ConnectWise Manage.

  • Update contact details instructs TimeZest to update the contact record of the client with the new number provided.

  • Update ticket owner/ Update primary resource automatically sets the scheduled resource as the owner of the ticket.

Scheduling Options

The settings in this section control how TimeZest offers appointment slots to your end-users:

  • Whether appointments can be scheduled over tentative appointments in the ConnectWise Manage calendar, or not. This option has no effect when TimeZest is used with Autotask.

  • The scheduling increment — this is the length of time between slots that TimeZest offers to your clients. For example, if you have a 60-minute duration appointment, but a 15-minute scheduling increment, TimeZest will offer appointments at 9:00 am, 9:15 am, 9:30 am, 9:45 am, and so on. The increments are calculated from the start of the day.

The next two options control how soon, and how far in the future TimeZest will allow clients to schedule appointments.

  • Minimum Notice is the earliest amount of time in the future in which TimeZest will allow an appointment to be scheduled — so that your team isn't surprised by appointments with only a few minutes notice. This is calculated from the current time when the client is selecting their appointment.

  • Scheduling Window allows you to specify the maximum distance in the future which TimeZest will allow an appointment to be scheduled — you might not want a client to schedule an appointment for May of next year, for example.

  • The buffer times settings control how much space around an appointment TimeZest leaves for preparing and for following up. If you wish to have buffer times, set those values here. One thing to note: TimeZest can't enforce these buffer times once it's created the appointment on your PSA calendar, where another schedule entry could be created that overlaps with the buffer times.

  • Closed ticket handling tells TimeZest what to do when the ticket associated with a scheduling request has been closed. It can either allow the client to schedule (and potentially reopen the ticket) or prevent that.

Tip: Some TimeZest partners use the minimum notice to meet their SLAs. They have several identical appointment types, but with differing minimum notice values. That way, clients on looser SLAs can only book a time, e.g. 8 hours in the future, but clients with tighter SLAs could book an appointment for 1 hour in the future.

Another Tip: If you use Calendar Sync to bring schedule entries from Outlook into ConnectWise Manage, it's a good idea to set a scheduling window of 24 days or less, as Calendar Sync only syncs 25 days into the future.

Online Meetings

Note: Online meeting functionality is only available to subscribers to the TimeZest Professional plan.

When a Microsoft Teams or Zoom integration has been connected in the Integrations section, TimeZest can automatically create an online meeting and provide the necessary URLs to both the technician (included in the confirmation email they receive, as well as the internal note TimeZest creates on the ticket/activity/to-do) and the end-user (in the confirmation email and calendar invite they receive).

URL-Based Scheduling & Shareable URLs

Note: Shareable URLs and URL-based scheduling are only available to subscribers on the TimeZest Professional plan. URL-based scheduling allows you to generate URLs (for example, in a ConnectWise workflow) that include a ticket number, which end-users can use to schedule for that ticket. Shareable URLs don't require a ticket at all - TimeZest will create a service ticket or activity/ to-do as required, so you can share these URLs to allow clients to schedule from email signatures, or your website.

The URL Slug is the identifier used in URLs for both forms of scheduling - it needs to be unique in your account, and only consist of letters, numbers, and hyphens, e.g. in-person-appt-30 or quarterly-business-review.

We've written a separate article to cover all the details of configuring URL-based Scheduling and Shareable URLs.

Rescheduling & Cancellation

Note: Rescheduling and Cancellation are only available to subscribers on the TimeZest Advanced and TimeZest professional plans.

The settings in this section control whether appointments can be rescheduled or canceled by the client. In the TimeZest pod, it's always possible for users and dispatchers to cancel an appointment.

The cancellation email template is the template TimeZest will use both to confirm after a client cancels their own appointment, or to notify the customer (with a reason) if the appointment is canceled by a member. If you are not subscribed to the TimeZest Professional plan, only the built-in default template is available to be used.

Notifications & Emails

Note: Custom Email Templates are only available to subscribers on the TimeZest Professional plan.

In this section, you can select the Email Templates you wish to use for this appointment type. These are managed in the Email Templates setting screen.

TimeZest's default templates include the ability to add a message to them if you don't need to completely customize them. The message for the notification email that asks clients to choose a time is the notification message. The confirmation message is included in the email we send confirming a selected appointment time.

(You can also interpolate these messages in custom email templates by including the {{ appointment_type.notification_message }} or {{ appointment_type.confirmation_message }} variable in those templates.)

The Calendar Template field allows you to customize the text that TimeZest includes in the calendar invite it attaches to emails sent to your end-users after they choose a time for their appointment. This text should show in their calendar, so it's a good place to include details about online meetings (which TimeZest does by default), or other instructions. It supports all the interpolation variables which confirmation templates support. You can see the full list in the Email Templates article.

The final option, Custom Attribute in Location Field, allows you to include the value of a custom attribute in the location field of the calendar invite sent to clients. The use case for this is to include a personal video call URL, such as from WebEx so that clients know exactly where to go for their call.

Reminders

Use Reminders to automatically remind clients to schedule their appointments. The benefit to using the Reminders inside TimeZest is that the call to action is visible inside of the emails your client receives. This minimizes the chances of the appointment not being scheduled in a timely manner.

ConnectWise Manage Options

Note: This section will only be visible if you use ConnectWise Manage as your PSA.

The two settings in this section control the schedule entry TimeZest creates in ConnectWise Manage when a client selects and confirms a time. The options in these fields are retrieved from your ConnectWise Manage instance, so you can change the values there.

  • Service Location determines the service location of the schedule entry created in ConnectWise Manage.

  • Schedule Status determines the schedule status (i.e. firm or tentative) of the schedule entry created in ConnectWise Manage.

When TimeZest creates an activity (as the result of scheduling with a Shareable URL), these settings have no effect.

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