Creating Office Hours with YouCanBookMe

YouCanBookMe provides good product support if you have questions.

Video Walkthrough

I’m providing detailed instructions for clarity – it’s actually quite simple and once you finish the setup it will save you a ton of time scheduling.

Here is a quick video walkthrough example.

Detailed Step-by-Step

We’re going to create a special event on your Google Calendar – what YouCanBookMe calls an “on duty” event and manage everything from Google Calendar.

Block Out Time on Google Calendar

Decide when you want to be available to provide help. Some considerations:

  • If you’re providing help worldwide via Skype (a great idea since you’ll build amazing new relationships quickly), I suggest picking at least 2 different slots during at 2 different times.  Try to cover waking hours for both Europe and Asia.
  • Pick the most convenient times for you – when you’ll enjoy being available to help people as a nice break.

In this example, Kevin has decided he wants to be available help startups in 30-minute slots for Wednesday 8-9 AM & Thursday 8-9:30 pm.

  1. Go to your Google calendar and block out times to create an event.
  2. Give the slot a memorable title: e.g. ‘Startup Help’
  3. Setup weekly repeats
  4. Update ‘Show me as Available’  – important!
  5. (optional) Change the color – easier to remember

Save when you’re done.

Gcal_Youcanbookme_setup

 

Your Google Calendar should now look something like this:

 

GCal with Times

Create Your YouCanBookMe Account

The next 5 steps are simple 1-button push clicks:

  1. Go to YouCanBook.me and click “Get Your Free Account”
  2. Click “Clink to Link Us to Your Google Calendar”
  3. Click “Skip”
  4. Click “Go Online”
  5. Click “Manage”

ClickUcbookGcallink

Skip.ycbGoOnlineycb

ycbManage

 

Setup YouCanBookMe for the Correct Times

Change the “text at the top of the booking grid” to make it a bit more friendly to homo sapiens

 

Change help textycb

 

Click on ‘times’

Ok…this is the key step to the whole process…

  1. Change the time to every slot where you might possibly schedule time for helping people – these times don’t matter, we’ll be managing them from Google Calendar.
  2. Set the length of time you want to meet with people. In this example, 30 minute slots.
  3. Type in the ‘memorable’ office hours name from your Google Calendar – you must type it exactly as shown!
  4. You know everything is working properly if you see the same time slots as in you Google Calendar.

Time setup2 page_ycb

Customize YouCanBookMe

Unless you’re only meeting people in your city, you’ll want to give people the option to change time zones in case YouCanBookMe incorrectly

  1. Click ‘advanced’
  2. Click ‘show time zone’ and select ‘above the grid’
  3. Click ‘allow user to change time zone’
  4. Double-check your updated calendar

time_zone_ycb

 

Now customize the form used to schedule time with you.  In this example I changed some of the language and added a field to request a Skype username.

 

booking_form

 

Now click on ‘afterwards’ and customize they message they receive after scheduling an appointment.

You can copy this text:

Wonderful! PLEASE do 2 things RIGHT AWAY:

1. Add to your Skype contacts: kevindewalt
2. Check your email for the confirmation – add it to your Calendar.

Please cancel if you cannot make it – cancellation link in the confirmation email.

AfterwardsTBC

 

 

Setup Google Calendars so you can manage attendees as guests – then attendees will be notified when change the Google Calendar event.

  1. Under ‘afterwards’ Click the Google tab
  2. Click the “all addresses from the booking become ‘guests'” box

 

set Google Calendars

 

Using YouCanBookMe

Now that you have the events setup, managing them is pretty straightforward – you can change the events or delete them just like any other Google Calendar event and the other party will get the notifications.

YouCanBook.me URL

Here is the URL from YouCanBook.me that you can share:

ycb_url

Of course, like anything else, occasional human error comes into play.

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Laurie Miller November 12, 2014 at 1:56 pm #

    I have been using calendly.com, but they went premium this fall for more than one event (so I keep my office hours as my on event). Now with calendly.com if I want to add a second event (like essay conferences for next week), I have to pay for a premium account.

    So this beings me to a question. Does YouCanBookMe, the free version, allow a user to have more than one event on an account? If so, I may be jumping ship to YCBM this week.

  2. bish June 1, 2016 at 7:41 am #

    You may notice that ‘setup’ isn’t a verb. It’s still ‘set up’ for the verb, and ‘set-up’ or now ‘setup’ for the noun. In a world where people think the plural of ’email’ is ’emails’, it will be a challenge, but English is still English. Change it if you like.

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