Most facilities have unused conference rooms and empty spaces. So, why leave them vacant? Enterprising organizations often rent these areas out to community groups for events and conferences. Good space management can also streamline space availability and booking for your internal teams.
Room scheduling software makes this room reservation process easy while also offering up-to-date calendars, organized records, and billing options. But what is room scheduling software?
Defining room scheduling software
Room scheduling software supplies a simple, digital solution for reserving unused rooms within a building or shared workspace. Depending on backend complexity, it allows planners and guests to book meeting rooms, as well as schedule set-up and clean-up crews. It further delivers a complete overview of applicable resources, such as event checklists and additional invoicing, to office managers.
Why invest in room scheduling software?
There are many benefits of room scheduling software. The main ones are:
Eliminates manual processes
No more paper, and no more double-booking mistakes! Room scheduling software can make managing room booking and room scheduling a breeze by removing the need to consult a spreadsheet or clipboard and centralizing booking information.
Improves use of space and communication
When office and facility managers have a complete overview of who will be where and when, planning for maintenance, cleaning, and other activities becomes effortless. Room scheduling software delivers an added layer of smooth communication.
Improves employee productivity
When room scheduling software is used for internal team meetings, no longer do employees need to question where they need to be and when. The effect is one of reassurance and allows them to work together confidently in the space set aside for their gathering. Room scheduling software also enables teammates to schedule use of office space, desks, workstations, and other areas.
Reduces administration with smart automation
Flows and sequences created using room scheduling software’s automation can trigger other events, such as automatic generation of set-up/tear-down custodial work orders. Accounting and facility directors can also close the loop by setting the system up to produce an invoice and email it to the renter, saving administrative time and effort.
The 6 must-have features for room scheduling software
To truly be called “room scheduling software,” said software must possess six distinct features.
1. Calendar and overview of spaces
Room scheduling software must have a centralized calendar that indicates available meeting rooms and room status. The capacity to link to maps and floor plans allows renters to further visualize the space and choose rooms based on size and location.
2. User management & privacy controls
The best room scheduling software allows both internal and external users to access the system to book rooms. Community leaders and team leaders should be able to schedule a conference room or event space independently and without requiring help from office staff. That means having the proper permissions set up with sign-in options (preferably single-sign-on (SSO)).
3. Email alerts & notifications
As discussed, good room scheduling software should automatically notify stakeholders of booking requests, outstanding invoices, communications regarding an event, and more. This frees up administrators and office staff.
4. Integrations with other software
Room scheduling software should be able to integrate with other systems and apps used by an organization. It should be a given that the system can communicate with Google Calendar, Microsoft Outlook, and Outlook Calendar. The capacity to integrate with athletic event software like ArbiterSports, Blackbaud, and BigTeams Schedule Star should also be considered.
5. Mobile access
The fifth must-have feature is mobile access. Room scheduling software should be available wherever a client may be—a soccer field, business lunch, or even the next-door office. Renters should be able to book a room anytime, anywhere.
6. Online payment options
Renters demand an integrated, one-stop shop user experience. Ensure that any room scheduling software solution you’re considering contains online payment options.
Some other helpful features to consider are analytics—which can define space and room usage—solo desk and workspace scheduling, and configurable features that can help room scheduling software work the way you do.
Who uses room scheduling software?
If an organization has several buildings or facilities, a use case probably exists for implementing room scheduling software. Some examples include:
Education facilities use room scheduling software to book athletic department events, gymnasium games and rentals, and to create community group meeting rooms.
Faith-based facilities use scheduling software for events, bible study groups, sports leagues, and services.
Residential & commercial real estate
Residential and commercial real estate uses include clubhouse rentals and parties, condominium association meetings, and group gatherings.
Commercial businesses & nonprofits
Commercial businesses and nonprofits use room scheduling software to schedule open rooms for board meetings, fundraisers, and team-building events.
Amusement parks, zoos, arenas, stadiums, & theaters
Amusement parks, zoos, arenas, stadiums, and theaters frequently use room scheduling software to schedule parties, meetings, special events, and weddings.
The list of what organizations can schedule is as endless as a leader’s imagination. The real emphasis here is on the extra revenue that event hosting and scheduling can add to a group’s bottom line, as well as the support their spaces can offer to their wider community with room scheduling software.
How can FMX help?
As many of our K-12 customers already know, FMX provides event scheduling features. FMX’s event scheduling allows your organization and outside community members to manage and track daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly meetings and events, all through an easy-to-navigate calendaring system.
FMX moves beyond the six key feature requirements for room scheduling software listed above. Designed with simplicity in mind while at the same time seeking to deliver a real-time catalog that minimizes schedule conflicts, we aim to reduce the steps in the scheduling process and provide a polished meeting experience.