How To Send Meeting Time Slots in SmartCloud Connect Meeting Scheduler¶
SmartCloud Connect enables you to schedule meetings with your business contacts without any extra back-and-forth email correspondence. Select available time slots in your calendar, also considering availability of your colleagues involved, create and send out interactive meeting invites, get your calendar automatically updated according to the recipient’s time choice. Additionally, SmartCloud Connect can add activities created this way immediately to your Salesforce CRM.
To create an invitation and schedule a meeting:
1. Create a new email message by clicking the New email or the Reply button in MS Outlook ribbon and specify one or multiple recipients in the To, Cc, or BCC fields.
2. In SmartCloud Connect sidebar, click the Time slots icon in Smart actions bar.
3. On the first page of SmartCloud Connect’s Meeting Scheduler, fill in the details:
- Meeting subject. This field is prefilled with the subject of related email message; you can modify it according to your preferences
- Organizers. Specify users from your org to be assigned the meeting’s organizer(s).
- Location and duration
- In the Location picklist you can select a location retrieved from your MS Exchange rooms resources or manually enter a location or conference room link; in addition, SmartCloud Connect stores five latest locations you used for your meetings and displays them for quick access as recent rooms in the picklist.
- Select Duration from the picklist. The minimum duration is 15 min, the maximum is 2 hours, the increase step is 15 min. At this step you may also change the meeting time zone in the Slots in drop-down list.
- Save to Salesforce record. Select the primary object (Lead or Contact) to be associated with the event from the picklist. Please note that if you leave this field blank the event will not be auto-shared in Salesforce.
- Attendees (required); Attendees (optional). Required attendees are the key meeting participants, optional attendees are additional meeting participants. These fields are prefilled with email addresses/Contact names from respectively the To/CC fields and the BCC field of the email selected in MS Outlook. You can add more attendees by entering their email addresses/Contact names in this field or remove attendees from the invitation by clicking the ( x ) next to their email addresses/Contact names. Note that in the Attendees list external ones (not belonging to your org) are listed on top, the internal (in-org) ones listed below them.
- Body (Description) Additional event information to be used as meeting description in the Exchange/Office 365 calendar and in Salesforce. Please note that it will not be included into the text of the invitation email generated by Meeting Scheduler.
After all fields are filled, click Next.
4. Next, SmartCloud Connect will read your MS Outlook or Google calendar data and build daily tables of your unoccupied time slots. Choose the meeting’s date using the “calendar” control at the top of the Meeting Scheduler screen and then pick one or multiple available meeting time spans by clicking on a free slot and dragging the cursor down; selected time spans can be bigger than the meeting Duration specified at the previous step but cannot be shorter.
Note that you can select multiple time slots on different dates: after you have picked slots on one date and then switch to another date using the calendar control, all previously selected slots are stored. Click Next after selecting the meeting slots to proceed.
For your convenience, if any of the meeting attendees are your colleagues (their email addresses categorized as internal), their parsed calendars will also be shown at this step, so you will be able to select meeting time slots also suiting their calendars:
Additionally, in the latest SmartCloud Connect updates you can setup MS Outlook reminders to be created automatically for meetings initiated via Meeting Scheduler.
In the latest updates of SmartCloud Connect if you select several adjacent time slots, they do not get merged and several different slot links are generated. Additionally, please note that time slots can no longer be selected within a day-long span reserved for all-day calendar events, including tentative, busy, out of office ones ; however, free and working elsewhere (non-mandatory) all-day events do not impose this limitation and are no longer indicated in Meeting Scheduler’s calendar. The same handling patterns are also applied for non-all-day meetings and appointments.
5. Click Finish to insert generated time slots links into your email message.
If you want to set a custom meeting time slots message template, refer to this article.
The recipient getting the meeting invitation links will be able to select their preferred slot for the meeting from among the possible options you suggested by clicking the necessary slot in the interactive table or dragging the Book a meeting control into it. Additionally, the recipients can select their actual time zone in the upper left corner of the scheduling page in order to learn what local time the time slots correspond to. After a slot is selected a confirmation dialog will appear. Please check the screenshots below.
Once the first recipient selects a time slot, the calendars of the organizer and other attendees will be automatically updated and a corresponding email notification will be sent out to them.
If the meeting time slots links are sent to multiple recipients (potential attendees), only the slot picked by the first attendee who books the meeting is considered, the rest attendees will not be able to pick other time slots, the time slot choice will locked for them:
The time slot links are valid for two weeks; they expire after the meeting time passes or 14 days after they are generated. A meeting can be scheduled for any date in the future, but the recipients must pick their preferred time slots within 14 days. This period can be adjusted on request.
Please note that when you are using this feature from the Sidebar running in MS Outlook on a mobile device you will not be able to edit the text of the resulting email – a pre-configured Salesforce message template will be used instead and the message with the links you generated will be sent by the Add-In directly.