Adding and viewing bookings
In this article
Customising the Bookings module user experience
Depending on your user's most common booking workflows, the Bookings Module Options allow you to Edit and set
- whether the booking Charges functionality should be enabled
- the Default planner view - either Day, Week or Month view
- the Start week on, which determines which day of the week is first on the Planner in Week and Month view
- whether new unlinked bookings Show on calendar by default
- whether new bookings are Linked to an event or Not linked to an event (i.e. a standalone booking) by default - ideal if most of your bookings are external bookings that are not linked to your organisation's Calendar events
- the default Status of new bookings - "confirmed" or "pending". So, if new bookings have an approval stage, you can set the default status to "pending" and then, once approved, a booking can be set as "confirmed"
Adding or editing a booking
There are two main ways to add a booking. The first is through the Planner, which displays all your bookings visually in either a Day, Week or Month View. Click Add booking at the top of the Planner.
You can also add a booking through the Bookings section of the module, which displays all your bookings in a simple, searchable list. Using the View and Status tools you can filter the list if you wish. Again, to add a new booking click Add booking at the top of the page.
Whichever method you choose, you'll be taken to the Add booking page.
Begin by selecting whether the Booking is Linked to an event or Not linked to an event. In this way you can link internal bookings to existing events in your Calendar module or you can create unlinked bookings that are not linked to any Calendar module event.
If the Booking is Linked to an event
...search and select the event. The event's Name and Date/s (and other event details) will be auto-populated into the booking.
If the Booking is Not linked to an event
...add the booking Name (required). Add the booking Date. Selecting single date adds the current date, which you can edit by clicking in the date box to bring up the date picker.
If the booking is for a recurring function or event, select Add multi-date and specify the booking sequence date range From and Until and the repeat Frequency. Note that the Add single date and Add multi-date options can be used in combination to build custom booking sequences with an irregular frequency. When the list of dates is generated, you still have the option to manually remove or add further dates to the sequence, if you wish. When you save the booking the multi-date booking sequence is created for each of the dates you have specified, but even then you can still add and remove dates to/from the sequence later if you need to.
For bookings not linked to an event, there is the option to Show on calendar - perhaps where access to the Bookings module is restricted but you still wish to keep your Calendar module users in the loop with certain bookings. Bookings shown on the Calendar in this way are not visible on web-embedded calendars or in My ChurchSuite - they're only visible to Calendar module Users.
Now specify the remaining booking details. Optionally Enable payment if you wish to enable your customer to pay their booking charges online by card (see the related support article for further information about enabling the 'booking charges' functionality). Optionally search/select the booking Contact or customer, or add a new customer if no matching results are found. For multi-site customers, select the booking's Site. Finally, set the booking Status.
Next, select the booking's Type from the drop down list. See the related support article for further information on adding your various types of bookings and setting up any type-specific booking form questions.
Next, optionally answer the type-specific questions that you have set up for that booking Type. Required questions are designated with a red asterisk and must have responses added in order to save the booking.
Finally add Resources to your booking - typically this will be rooms but resources might also include key personnel, like a minister for a wedding or funeral, or items of equipment or furniture. We've produced a related support article explaining how to add resources and resource-specific questions. You can select multiple resources if you wish. Click +Add resources to add them. For multi-site customers, note that resources are site-specific, so you'll only see resources listed for the site of the booking being added.
Specify the resource usage Start and End times for the booking. Optionally add Set up and Set down time for each resource as appropriate. Using these set up/set down indicators prevents situations where a clash is inadvertently created due to unforeseen preparation times e.g. clearing up a room from one booking overlapping with trying to get the same room ready for the next booking. Set up/set down times are taken into consideration when detecting booking clashes. With multiple Resources, notice how you can use the batch action checkboxes to select multiple resources and apply changes to all the selected resources. Optionally answer the resource-specific questions that you have set up for each Resource. Required questions are designated with a red asterisk and must have responses added in order to save the booking.
Any Booking Clashes detected are displayed, including details of other bookings for the same resource(s). Depending on the Booking module option for who can override clashes, you have the option to either Ignore clashes and save the booking - perhaps to resolve the clash later - or you can remove the resources that clash and add resources that are available before saving.
When you have completed all the necessary sections of the new booking, click to Save before navigating away from the page.
The newly-added booking "View" page is displayed, including a visual indicator of any unresolved clashes. If the booking is linked to an event, that event's image will be displayed. If not, you are able to add an image at this point - see the related support article on 'Managing images in ChurchSuite'. You can return to this page, perhaps to further Edit the booking at any time.
ChurchSuite assigns a unique, consecutively-numbered booking Reference to each booking you add, helping you to distinguish your various bookings. For multi-date bookings, the same Reference number is assigned to all bookings in the sequence, making it easy to view all the bookings in a sequence grouped together by the same booking reference number.
The booking Reference is shown on each booking page (see above) and also in the list of bookings (see below). Clicking on a booking reference will filter a list to all bookings for that reference...
The booking Reference is also fully searchable in the booking search.
Viewing and managing your bookings
You can view bookings in the Planner - switching View between Day, Week and Month view. You can also filter the Planner by booking Type and Category - ideal for viewing perhaps just your "Rooms" category or just your "External" type bookings...
When viewing Today, a real-time timeline moves across the Planner, giving you a visual indicator of where you're at with your bookings for the day.
Navigating between different dates on the Planner is really easy too. Click Change Date and select a date. The Today button on the right will quickly reset your Planner back to display bookings for today's date. The forward and backward arrow buttons will also change the display by a single day/week/month (depending on your Planner view).
When viewing the Bookings list, notice how you can switch the View between Past or Future bookings. You can also filter by booking Status - Any, Confirmed (Default), Pending or Cancelled.
While most customers will use the Planner view and Bookings pages to keep everyone in the loop, you can also export your Planner in PDF format, providing a printed summary of the day/week/month's bookings with contact details for the overseer of each booking. It's also possible to subscribe to iCal feeds of the Planner, for those who wish to see bookings in the personal diary application.
It's also possible to subscribe to iCal feeds of the Planner, for those who wish to see bookings in their personal diary application.
When viewing a booking, you have the option to Communicate with the booking contact directly from the booking page. This option is only shown if a booking contact or customer has been set for the booking. If that contact/customer doesn't have an email or mobile number, the respective Send email and Send SMS options are not shown.
Communications sent in this way are logged in the booking's Communication log at the bottom of the booking page and in the communication log of the booking contact (in the Address Book) or customer (in the Bookings module's Customers section).