1. Customizable booking forms
Our Higher Education online scheduling survey for 2022 showed that being able to customize the booking forms is the clear favorite of all features available in scheduling software for higher education.
Flexibility is the key to its success since it can provide solutions for different needs.
- Provides information so advisors can prepare in advance and have answers, forms, and options ready to go.
- Help ensure students are meeting with the right person
- Send only the information a student needs about their specific booking.
- Collect data to measure the impact of student initiatives
“The booking form questions tell me the problem beforehand. So when we do meet, I already understand the issue and how to solve it. “ - Jeremy Hommowun, Illinois College Case Study
2. A choice of appointment options on one page
Your students don’t all have the same needs, so choose college scheduling software that lets you offer them a choice of meeting types.
Being able to offer more than one kind of appointment on the same booking page is a huge efficiency boost.
- Use the same link for all students but let them decide the kind of meeting they need.
- See at-a-glance which meetings you have upcoming
- Automatically ensure the meeting is the right length for the type of support needed
- Offer 1-1 or group sessions on different pages
“Appointment types help us make things really straightforward for the student. Different pages offer different options depending on what is required.” - Brittany Wise, Missouri State University Case Study
3. Customizable notifications
Having tailored, automated email and SMS messages is a game-changer for universities. They let faculty and staff
- Send relevant, timely information when students need it most
- Dramatically reduce no-shows with automated reminders
- Offer consistent messaging based on the individual student’s needs
- Reach students wherever they are with text messaging options
- Easily follow up with students when the meeting is over
“Reminders have decreased no-shows all across campus. The ability for students to reschedule and for it to be effortless and for them to do it on their own has been a game-changer for sure.” - Jaime Ross, Missouri State University Case Study
4. Easy cancel & reschedule options
“I can’t make my advising appointment. I’ll just wait until tomorrow. I’m sure I’ll remember. And I’m happy to hang on hold until they can answer the phone”.
Said no student ever!
A primary reason why universities love using online scheduling software is that it empowers students to manage their time and their meetings. One-click canceling and rescheduling is a big part of that.
- Students can change an appointment directly from their phone
- Friction-free options to cancel or reschedule
- No need to call in to find a new time
- Collect cancellation data to better understand student needs
“The reminders and option to cancel/reschedule meetings allows us to focus on what we are doing rather than managing a calendar.” - Education Administrator
5. Mobile-friendly, customizable booking pages
Our research shows that the majority of bookings made through YouCanBook.me are created on mobile. So it’s critical that your scheduling software works flawlessly when students view it on their phones.
And booking pages are an extension of your department and your brand, so you should be able to customize them with images and logos.
- Create multiple booking pages to offer consistent service to every student
- Embed booking pages in department web pages and your LMS
- Ensure equity for every student with WCAG 2.0-compliant accessibility and the highest standards of data protection.
“We can embed YouCanBook.me right in our LMS. Students don't have to leave their course page to book an appointment. They’re staying engaged in the content and see what we want them to see.” - Jeremy Hommowun, Illinois College Case Study
6. Easy-to-manage availability
Schedules can change often and at short notice. So being able to easily adjust the availability that shows on your booking page is key to preventing double bookings.
- Simply drag and drop in your calendar to update your online booking page.
- Easily manage hybrid or frequently changing schedules without leaving your calendar.
- Individual team members can manage their availability directly in their own work calendar. No need to log in to the main account to make an update.
7. Integration with video conferencing tools
In our hybrid world, being able to offer both in-person and virtual appointments is a new requirement.
- Automatically create unique video links on Zoom, Google Meet, or MS Teams
- Team members can integrate their own video conferencing account
- Give students a choice of in-person or remote meetings
- Trigger links to send in emails, reminders, and calendar events for you and your students
Has your higher education scheduling software got what it takes?
If outstanding scheduling software is already one of your educational apps for teachers, we’ve got a bonus for you!
Kick your scheduling up a notch with Zapier & webhooks
If you’re already the campus expert for your college’s scheduling software, try these slightly more advanced features that will put a rocket under your productivity and give you oodles of impact evidence for your team.
- Automatically send booking data into your CRM, project management tool, marketing automation software, or any other database you use
- Eliminate manual tasks and human error; update data across multiple systems at the same time
- Easily analyze booking trends and data
- Use booking data to trigger automated workflows
“If you can use webhooks, they’re a game-changer. That was a big part of our decision to use YouCanBook.me.” - Danny Ryel, Portland State University
💡 Pro-tip: webhooks are a powerful feature that helps YCBM work seamlessly with all the tools you use: automatically update your CRM, notify stakeholders, and create a bespoke reporting database. They’re easy to set up with minimal programming ability. Find out more here.
The real must-have is scheduling software for higher education
“YouCanBook.me inspires confidence in our team: confidence that we have time for our staff, and that the issue will be fixed. Confidence, transparency, ease of access. It really helps to break down the barriers.” - Jeremy Hommowun, Illinois College Case Study
So there you have it. The 7 most valued, must-have features when you’re looking for higher education appointment scheduling software.
Start with these and you can’t go wrong. You’ll soon be on your way to friction-free scheduling that saves you time and creates an awesome student experience.