Cereberally, I’ve known that Tungle, the innovative and (actually awesome) online scheduling tool, was going the way of all the world for a while now.
I have yet to emotionally grasp what that means for me personally and professionally.
I’m a recruiter. It’s what I do all day long every day (and nights and weekends on-occasion). There’s literally days where I have hours upon hours of booked interviews and follow-ups and calls booked back-to-back-to-back.
In fact, I often just laugh after I finally dig back into voicemails and get two or three repeated VMs from candidates that say: “Hey, I got your email suggesting I book a time with you on your calendar, but figured it’d be easier to just try and catch you, so call me whenever you have a free moment….”
Truth: No moments are free.
But, since this is 2012 and not 1962, I don’t have an admin (according to my research, they used to call admins “secretaries”) booking all my appointments. Even if I did have someone who could do all this, I am not sure I would really want to have them spending their time doing something so monumentally time consuming compared to the resulting ROI. A 15 min meeting that takes 15 min to coordinate back-and-forth phone calls and emails? Please. Shoot. me. in. the. face.
Enter Tungle: Brainchild of entrepreneur Marc Gingrass and others. Since 1996, they’ve been killing it for helping busy professionals allow meetings to be scheduled automagically with a tool that didn’t suck.
Enter RIM (the makers of BlackBerry): They purchased Tungle in April, 2011. You should know that I have a soft spot in my heart for BB. They innovated in the smartphone space for years without a rival. Now, they are flagging and have realigned all their resources around shipping BlackBerry 10. Along the way, they’re killing off Tungle, which brings me to my current state of desperation–finding a replacement scheduling app that doesn’t suck.
And it’s not going well.
- Sync instantly with all my online calendars. I use Google AND Exchange. You’ve gotta support them both. In fact, let me mash up as many calendars I want into a “free/busy to rule them all” calendar. In three years with Tungle, I never had a double-booking. If I get one, you’re fired.
- Easy URL to hand out.
- MOBILE MOBILE MOBILE: Users need to be able to book me from mobile and I MUST be able to confirm appointments via mobile. MUST-HAVE. PERIOD.
- Allow meetings to default to a certain length (15 or 30 min) but can be changed.
- No surprises Make sure meetings can’t be scheduled immediately. Give me a time-buffer before the next meeting can be planned.
- Not give away my personal email address unless I want it shared.
- Easy on schedulees — Validate their email address, sure, but allow people to book meetings without an account and make it crazy-pants easy to book a meeting without registering, logging in, or doing anything else.
- Sync or ICS option — Give me the option to get the appointments just “placed” on my calendar or send me an ICS invitation. Send the people I am meeting with an ICS every time (unless they have an account with you and choose otherwise).
Schedule Once has almost got all these things licked, except for MOBILE! I am also trying out Doodle and now Hakema(?).