What Is a Room Scheduling System?
A room scheduling system is a computer software application that enables schools, businesses and other organizations (as well as their employees and staff) to schedule rooms for their needs. Facilities managers use room scheduling systems to make room reservations and manage room schedules, as well as coordinate room availability with equipment requests from staff members.
A room scheduling system is a useful tool, particularly in a hybrid work model, where people are allowed to work both from home and from the office, at their own preference.
If you are looking for such an application, you probably know the market is not short of room scheduling system options. However, they are not all created equal, so it's important to know exactly how to choose the best one for your business.
Looking to find out more about that? Read on and find out more from our guide to choosing the best room scheduling software for you.
Why Should I Invest in Room Scheduling Software?
As mentioned before, room scheduling software is extremely useful (especially, but not only in a post COVID-19 context). Here are some of the main benefits to consider when it comes to reservation software:
Make Meetings Easy to Find, Book and Schedule.
A room scheduler will enable you and your team to make meetings easier to find, book, and schedule, regardless of the specific working model your office space has embraced. A room reservation software will help you be more efficient, reduce friction among team members, make sure all the equipment is ready when you need it, and, overall, provide everyone in your company the flexibility they need so much in a post-pandemic world.
Gain Insights Into Space Utilization
A room reservation system will also allow you to gain insights into how space is being utilized. This will allow you to better plan your office space for the future. For instance, it will help you determine if you need another conference room or specific pieces of equipment you need to invest in.
Likewise, it can also help you determine if parts of your office are regularly unused by your employees so you can sub-rent them or transform them into a co-work space for freelancers and consultants.
Data is key to good business decisions, so knowing exactly how your space is used can help you make the best choices for your company!
Increase Employee Productivity
A conference room scheduling software can help you increase employee productivity by ensuring that a room is free for a meeting when the room is supposed to be available, and by assuring you have the option to book additional rooms as needed.
Room scheduling software also allows you to reserve room resources in advance, so that room resources are already reserved and ready for your meeting when it begins.
Moreover, if your employees need specific pieces of equipment to be readily available for special meetings, a meeting room scheduling software can help them make sure they book the right conference room in advance, so everything is ready for their meeting.
How Does Scheduling Software Work?
In essence, scheduling software works by allowing room resources to be booked online.
For example, if your room scheduling program has an interface where room resources are bookable via the internet, this will allow you to schedule room resources into your calendar that way.
Furthermore, room resources (such as projectors, special microphones, or conference screens) can have their own availability calendars that show whether a room is booked for a particular day or time slot, which room resources are free, when room resources can be booked, etc.
This is particularly helpful for room resources that are used in multiple rooms, such as training room resources.
For Whom Is Room Scheduling Software Useful?
Room scheduling software is useful for pretty much every type of business. As long as you have an office space and as long as you have employees, a room scheduling software will definitely prove its use for you.
Let's take a look at this in a bit more detail, from the perspective of those who tend to capitalize on the benefits of such software the most:
Post COVID-19, the role of a Facility Manager has changed tremendously. From managers who used to sit on the outside of the leadership tables, Facility Managers and their strategic skills are now considered to be essential to building the workplace of the "new normal".
A room scheduling software can help a Facility Manager to properly assess room use, room performance, and room capacity, as well as plan accordingly when necessary. Room schedulers or room bookers are essential when it comes to room management nowadays.
For Facility Managers whose roles are becoming more room-centric, room scheduler software can be extremely beneficial in helping them do their job.
A room scheduling tool is one of the most important room management tools that a building or infrastructure manager can have. Room schedulers help them plan better, accommodate the right number of people, ensure safety and hygiene are up to par with current standards, and so on.
In the hands of Facility Managers, as well as employees, room scheduling software can maximize revenue by allowing employees to book specific rooms online.
Managers of Coworking Spaces
These managers need room scheduler software to help coworking space managers room bookings for their members, or guests. If room scheduling software is not an option for them, they can use room scheduling software open source options.
Some room scheduling software allow users to alter availability of rooms at certain times so that employees do not have reservations during meetings and other events. The software can also generate email or text message alerts to users to serve as reminders of meetings and room reservations.
Room scheduling software can have other capabilities, such as room booking history which helps in planning room utilization. It may also be programmed with security features that let employees see room availability only through a pin code. These capabilities help minimize room theft, while helping the manager by eliminating room booking mistakes.
The room scheduling software can also be integrated with a calendar, so that employees have an easy way of checking room schedules and availability, while looking for a date to set up a meeting. The room scheduling software can also support multiple users in a company, allowing room bookings from different locations.
Common Room Scheduling Software Functionality
Although room scheduling software functionality will vary from one tool to another, the general features most of the apps in this niche provide include the following:
- Room booking
- Hot desking
- Work planning
- Safety features (such as features that help maintain the social distance between employees)
- Various integrations (such as with Microsoft Teams or Outlook, for example)
Types of Room Scheduling Software Buyers
Just as there are many types of room scheduling software options, there are also many types of room scheduling software buyers. In general, however, they can be categorized as follows:
Small and Medium-Size
Small and medium-size businesses that invest in room scheduling apps usually do so for three reasons: to improve room booking efficiency, to implement hot desking, and/or to improve room availability.
These businesses typically invest in room scheduling software to automate room management processes (such as room booking) through the implementation of room APIs or integrations with popular room scheduling apps that are available on the market.
How Do I Choose a Meeting Room Scheduling Software?
OK, now that you are more familiar with room scheduling software and what it does, you might wonder: "but how do I choose one that works for me?"
The answer is both simple and quite complex. There is no one size fits all option to be perfect for everyone, but at the end of the day, you should consider the following criteria:
- Does it meet your needs?
- Does it integrate with your already existing tools?
- Is it easy to set up and use?
- Does it do the job right?
- Does it help you improve workplace safety and productivity?
- Does it provide you with in-depth analytics to help your Facility Managers and HR?
- Does it fit your budget?
Think of what you need first, and then see if the solutions available out there are a good fit for you.
What Are Other Use Cases for Room Scheduling Software?
A lot of people look at room scheduling software as just another solution to track rooms and meetings. However, as you have seen from this article, there are multiple, extensive applications to room booking and resource scheduling software. In a nutshell, some of the best use cases for room scheduling software include the following:
- Room scheduling software for companies who provide room booking services to clients, such as hotels and conference centers.
- Room scheduling solution for real estate, to help agents book house views in a well-planned and healthy way.
- Room scheduling software for the healthcare industry to manage room bookings and room scheduling software.
- Room scheduling software for schools, to keep room bookings orderly and up-to-date room scheduling software to book rooms in a school.
... And so on. As you can see, you don't have to be a huge Enterprise to reap all the benefits room scheduling has to offer. Additionally, there are a few more points you should definitely consider:
Conference Room Scheduling Software
Conference room scheduling software can help you from a range of perspectives. More specifically, it can help you minimize room scheduling errors which can be damaging to the success of your company. For example, room booking mistakes made by employees can cause room clashes, frustration, loss of time and energy (which could have been used on something more productive), and so on.
Meeting Rooms Scheduling Software
This type of feature includes several other benefits, including room utilization and space planning.
This room scheduling system is designed to help you plan room usage and coordinate room reservations, which can be extremely useful if your company has multiple employees.
Desk Scheduling Software
Some desks in your office are more "wanted" than others. Hot desking allows you to shift room schedules to ensure that everyone gets a chance to use the room and the desk they want.
With room scheduling software, it's easy to view room schedules and desk schedules and rotate who sits where and on which days. No more clashes, no more "envy", no more frustration -- just ease of use and accessibility.
Which Is the Best Meeting Room Scheduling Software?
As mentioned before, we can't answer that question for you. The answer will vary according to what you are looking for and what you aim to achieve with it.
What we can answer, however, is...
Why Should I Use Yarooms as Room Scheduling Software?
We can't make this decision for you, but YAROOMS is an excellent room scheduling option because:
- One shared space calendar keeps all your room bookings in a single place.
- Powerful integrations with Microsoft Teams or Zoom helps organize hybrid meetings and engage both remote and on-site employees at the same time.
- It is rich with features to control people flow, room capacity, and timing between bookings so you can conduct a safe return to the office.
- Comprehensive reports provide insight into your room booking data and help optimize office utilization.
- On-the-go scheduling is enabled through mobile app and room panel app: you can check room availability or book on the spot.
At the end of the day, room scheduling software doesn't program rockets to go to Mars -- but it can surely help teams in all industries work more flexibly, securely, and efficiently. Choosing the right software is an important matter you should definitely consider thoroughly -- and just in case you have any questions, we're here to answer them.