The scheduling module is one of the most important parts of a modern CRM system, yet it is also one of the most underutilized. More than just a list of appointments, your scheduler can help you increase sales and improve customer satisfaction by letting you intelligently manage your time and your interactions with customers.
While nearly everyone knows how to enter an appointment in the CRM calendar, most systems can do a lot more than that. It’s worth taking the time to see what your scheduling module can do and how it can improve your life.
For example, most scheduling modules can improve your relations with your customers by letting you schedule communications even before your initial appointment. This can serve to establish terms and conditions with the customer before contact and help make sure that everything is set up for the first appointment. For example, if the customer needs to have some paperwork handy, the message can serve as a reminder and help make sure everyone is fully prepared.
Rescheduling is an important feature in many CRM systems. If you or the customer has to change the time or other conditions of the appointment, a good CRM scheduling system makes it easy to make the changes, update everyone’s calendar and send reminders of the changes.
A good scheduling module can handle complex appointments, such as those involving several people at once. This is increasingly common in today’s complex business world and the ability to schedule such appointments is a big help.
A scheduling module can also help to set up classes either in person or online. In addition to reserving the resources, the module can also be used to take attendance and record who showed up for the session. All of this eliminates grunt work for the teacher and keeps a more accurate record of the class.
The scheduling module can also keep track of what is to be discussed or was discussed in the appointment. Usually this is done by tying the scheduling module into the main CRM database. This has the added advantage of keeping a central record that integrates into the CRM system.
Some CRM systems have specialized functions in their scheduling modules that adapt them to particular kinds of jobs. For example some of them are especially designed to support educational functions with special emphasis on tracking classes and groups of classes.
Beyond the basic scheduling function the features and capabilities of CRM scheduling modules vary widely. It’s important to examine your own system to see what additional features it offers and then decide what you want to do with them.
Using these extra features often requires extra planning and a learning curve. Not every feature is going to be applicable to every business so it’s important to decide which features can be helpful in your business environment.