Custom availability – because not everyone works the same hours

By - 11 Sep 2012

Resource availability window

 

The ability to customise the availability of individual resources has always been a feature of Resource Guru, however, it’s been a little bit hidden away and some of you may have missed it. Given that we’ve just made an enhancement to this feature – the ability to set ‘default’ availability for resource types – we thought it was time to write a post and say a little bit more about custom availability and why we added it in the first place.

In a typical company, very few resources are available for equal amounts of time. Inanimate things, like meeting rooms or equipment are generally available 24/7 whereas people typically work Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm with a 1 hour lunch break. There will also be the part-time employees who only work mornings or those who only work a 4 day week. If you’re going to have a resource scheduling system that actually works, it’s very important that these anomalies are taken into account. If not, you might book someone at a time when they are not actually available. Discovering this fact at the last minute when the work is due to start is not much fun.

Setting a resource’s availability is simple. Just click on the resources card in the ‘Resources’ section and you will see a tab labelled ‘Normal Availability’ where you can set the times they are available on each day. You can add or remove lunch breaks, increase the working day or redefine them altogether.

Setting a default for your resources’ availability

When you open a new account with Resource Guru, your different resource types already have defaults. Non-human resources like meeting rooms are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week whereas people are available 8 hours a day (9 am to 1pm and then from 2pm to 6pm) Monday to Friday. Before, you weren’t able to edit these defaults so, if you were a company that worked on Saturdays, you would have to edit the normal availability every time you added a resource.

Now, if you have the correct permissions, you can go into Settings and the first tab in the ‘Resources’ section is labelled ‘Default Availability’. From here, it’s pretty straightforward, just click on the resource type you want to edit and change the time blocks accordingly. The new availability settings will be used as the default for all future resources added to the system.

Default availability window

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What’s in store for custom availability?

There’s plenty more in store for custom availability settings. For a start we’re going to make it much easier to edit the time blocks. We are also going to give you the ability to edit a resource’s availability settings at the time that you add them to the app.

A bit further down the line we want to give you the ability to make irregular changes to the availability for specific days, eg if a resource agrees to work late on Thursday – but just this once. Currently this type of booking would end up on the Waiting List.

We hope you find these availability settings useful and, as always, we would love to hear your thoughts.

Hi, I'm Percy, one of the founders of Resource Guru. Please feel free to leave comments or get in touch - we'd love to hear from you.