Salesforce.com has come out with a great tool that will help make scheduling meetings with your customers and co-workers a breeze. This tools can help with CRM user adoption of your sales force automation system or customer service automation system.
How often have you tried to schedule a meeting with multiple customers and co-workers and found yourself chasing emails and phone calls all week just to get it scheduled? Well, Salesforce has a great solution, it is called Cloud Scheduler!
Here is how it works. Once an administrator adds the “New Meeting Request” button to the Open Activities related lists for leads, contacts, and/or person accounts, you can now use it to request meetings with any contact, lead and co-worker.
Just press the “New Meeting Request” button on a contact or lead and a new overlay opens up (you must have the “New User Interface” enabled and it will not work with IE6 or Chrome).
Select the “To” button up top and do a search for everyone you want to attend (your original contact or lead is already added). Each person selected must have an email address on their record. Click done when you have added everyone. You can add up to 50 invitees.
You are now at a calendar screen that shows busy times from yours and your co-worker’s Salesforce calendars. On the right, you can pick the meeting duration and it also gives you fields to enter the subject and location.
You can propose up to five meeting times anywhere in the future just by clicking on a time in the calendar. When you click “Next”, you are given a screen to add a message that all invitees will receive. Then send.
Each invitee will receive an email with your message. When they click the “Respond to this request” button in the email, they will be brought to a webpage where they can enter their choices and add comments. You can even add your own company branding to the emails and webpage.
You will receive an email each time an invitee responds and you can track the total responses from the “Requested Meetings” tab in the Calendar section of your home page. When you open the meeting, you will see each invitee’s choices in a nice easy to read column format. Just select the choice where everyone is free and use the “Confirm” button. They will all get the confirmation email.
What if there is no open column where everyone can attend? There is also a “Reschedule” button and you can use each invitee’s comments to make other meeting choices.
What if I pick meeting times early in the week and I do not get a response until the end of the week? Salesforce thought of this as well. There is an option to let Salesforce propose meeting times. You can select within 5 or 10 business days and there is even an option for “Whenever”.
No times are selected until the first invitee responds. Then, Salesforce looks at all of the Salesforce calendars for you and your co-workers and proposes five times in the time frame you chose (5 or 10 days or Whenever). Whenever tries to find times in the next 5 business days and if it cannot, it goes out 10 days. If it still cannot find free times, it keeps going out up to four weeks.
As you can see, this can change the insanity of planning meetings to an enjoyable experience. I imagine the adoption rate for this by salespeople will be tremendous once they find out about it!
Why do all of the scheduling? Let Salesforce do the work for you and get back to your core business!
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StarrForce is a Salesforce.com registered consulting partner who provides Salesforce support and implementation services to maximize your Salesforce investment.