Overview - Queue vs Booking
Schedules define how the queue and staff are managed on the queue. To help provide extra flexibility for shops two types of schedules can be defined. We will explore the reasons and how to setup the schedules.
Queue: First in first served, highly fliud and flexible. System will fill gaps between bookings by moving them slightly.
Booking: Allocated to a staff member, with a firm start time. More consistent start times, can have gaps between bookings.
Including "Booking" on queue: Admin setting allowing 1. walk-ins to be automatically allocated to a staff member or 2. If staff excluded, NOT allocated and NOT shown in wait time calculations.
With any configuration there are pro's and con's for each scenario. This article will try an aticulate the cases. The good news is any changes are just configuration, you can experienment and change based staff or day to get it right for you!
Why have multiple schedule types?
Case 1: In demand staff
In the queue environment it is first in, first served. SLIKR allows clients to select a preferred staff member and we "predict" the allocation to advise a wait time.
In demand staff can have 5 clients waiting or more. If the staff member finishes a client faster than expected the queue will may determine the next client should start, it is possible this client was scheduled for another staff member meaning now and extra people is allocation to the in-demand staff member meaning the people need to wait longer NOTE: Queue manager has the visual prompts to manage this (see queue manager) but we will just focus on the schedules for this article. So in these instances with busy staff it may be good to isolate their queue from the others and keep people consistent. So while the queue may strictly be out of order a little, the wait times are more consistent for this staff member.
Case 2: Increase bookings volume in the shop
A walk-in shop will typically see 20 - 40 % of client using the queue ahead feature. Some shops will see demand grow to 60 - 80% over time, in these instances the overall shops benefits from the stability of bookings. So when a client gets a time, we allocate them to a fixed place. Obviously in this instance there is no strict queue order and each person is served in turn of the staff member. The advantage is your can progressiv
Case 2: More bookings in the shop
A walk-in shop will typically see 20 - 40 % of client using the queue ahead feature. Some shops will see demand grow to 60 - 80%, in these instances the overall shops benefits from the stability of bookings. So when a client gets a time, we allocate them to a fixed place. Obviously in this instance there is no strict queue order and each person is served in turn of the staff member.
Case 3: Apprentice or Tiered pricing
A shop may want to charge extra for a particular senior staff member, or in the case of any apprentice limit the automatic allocation and charge a reduced price. The option is available to exclude automatic allocation to "Booking" schedules. This isolated staff from walk-ins unless a specific service is selected, or the staff member start a client manually.
The default settings are to allocate staff as queue and to exlude bookings from the queue.
Queue - The most flexible schedule and will fill gaps my moving the start times slightly to accomodate walk-ins.
- Will show wait time
- Minimum Gap : Admin setting - what is the minimum time period we should try to fill before we ignore the gap. default set to 0. If set to 5 or 10 it will ignore a timeslot if there is only 10 mins available and will allocate the client a later place in the queue.
Booking - A client will be allocated to staff memeber and given a start time.
- Client will remain on the staff member queue
- Start time will remain set
- Small gaps may appear between bookings
- Times are more consistent
- Staff sick or not available. Shop needs to manually move clients to an alternate staff.
- If a staff member is running behind the client will not be moved automatically. Queue manager will show if a staff member is running behind.
Apprentice - set their schedule type as booking. They will be exlucded but can manually select to start suitable services in queue manager
- Will not show wait time
- Will not be auto allocated
- Can start and finish a service