Therapist Guide: Calendar Synch & Scheduling on Choosing Therapy
Choosing Therapy's calendar synch enables potential clients to find appointment times that are mutually convenient for them and the therapist, without having to play phone tag or exchange a dozen emails. We believe that booking an initial therapy appointment should be quick and easy.
At same time, we want to provide therapists maximum flexibility and complete control over their schedules. Choosing Therapy's calendar synch feature enables therapists to show potential clients real-time availability while retaining the ability to change their availability or block off time on a one-off basis.
Why Synch Your Calendar to the Choosing Therapy Directory?
One of the major barriers for people looking to schedule a first therapy appointment is finding a therapist with availability that meets their needs.
Scheduling your first therapy session can take dozens of phone calls to multiple therapists and countless emails, many of which are never returned. When prospective clients do get a response, it's often just to be informed that that therapist doesn't have availability that works. In other words, it's time intensive, it's frustrating, and it's leading to fewer people getting the help and support they need.
Choosing Therapy is solving this by featuring calendar synch capability in the Choosing Therapy Directory.
Our calendar synch feature is one of the many special features that sets our profile listings apart from others therapist directories out there.
Calendar synch is easy to set up and instantly allows potential clients to view your availability for appointments in real time. This takes much of the guesswork and back-and-forth calls out of the booking process. Potential clients who contact or book online with Choosing Therapy Directory members already know the therapist's open availability.
Another reason to synch your calendar?
The Choosing Therapy Directory is designed to making finding the right therapist and booking a first session as easy as possible.
To achieve that, we provide prospective clients a list of fully-vetted therapists that are filtered based on specialty, availability, experience, and cost. Synching your calendar and showing real-time availability creates an easier, less frustrating process for potential clients and for this reason, therapists who synch their calendar show up higher in search results on our directory (relative to those with similar matches for cost, specialty, and experience).
In other words, a synched calendar results in higher chances of clients viewing your profile and booking an appointment with you.
How Does Calendar Synch Work?
Choosing Therapy's calendar synch allows you to pick regular "office hours" that you'd be open to seeing clients so long as you don't have a prior engagement. We then synch your calendar with the Choosing Therapy Directory which then constantly scans your calendars for availability during those "office hours." Any calendar appointment (personal, professional, or otherwise) that gets added within your office hours immediately removes the corresponding time slot from available time slots on the directory.
You can set this up in three easy steps:
1. Connect Your Calendar (Google, Microsoft, Apple) to the Directory
You will need to connect your personal calendar to the Choosing Therapy directory, in order for clients to view your availability in real time, and simplify the booking process (for both you and the client!). Our calendar synch program automatically scans your calendar to see if you are busy. Events that are booked in your calendar show you as busy, and automatically remove that availability from the directory.
For example, a therapist indicated they are available between 6 - 10 PM on Tuesdays. However, they have a one-time family event for a particular Tuesday or a regularly scheduled client appointment during that window. The therapist books that event or appointment in their calendar, our program scans your calendar for when you are busy, and that time no longer shows as available.
Note: We only gather information regarding your “busy” status. No other information is taken from your calendar.
2. Input Your Recurring "Office Hours" into the Choosing Therapy Directory
After synching your calendar, you will input all hours of availability you have for client appointments. These times will show as being available to potential clients on a recurring weekly basis.
At any time, you change the hours you want to be available on a recurring basis through booking events within your calendar (for one time availability changes) or changing them in a directory (for recurring changes in overall availability).
3. Choosing Therapy Platform Members: Connect SimplePractice to Your Calendar
Our platform therapists will also synch their calendar within their Choosing Therapy provided SimplePractice EHR account.
When a client schedules an appointment, that information resides in Simple Practice. In order to get that information into your personal calendar, you will need to connect it to SimplePractice. (Only the client's initials and your video session link will appear in your personal calendar.)
This completes the calendar synch loop. All events booked within SimplePractice will automatically appear on your calendar, and those appointments will remove that particular availability from the directory.