How Timewatch makes an Office 365 group calendar even better for your business

Outlook is a great product from the perspective of an individual employee. Timewatch makes it even better – especially for a business looking for a big picture perspective. Timewatch can help you make better use of Outlook and improve your business productivity with our group calendar app.

Successful businesses need an entire office calendar, and be able to create team calendars and group calendars. With these views companies can see what employees are working on, which customer or project they are working with, whether the time is productive or non-productive, and whether it is chargeable or not. Timewatch has the key to improving your internal communication and overall business efficiency.

New Outlook add-on system Outlook Optics™ released - adds system adds enhanced group calendars to Outlook. Learn More

Enhancing Office 365 group calendars

Outlook Optics™ provides configurable outlook group calendar views of your employees.

You can create and save views with any mixture of employees and quickly flip between views of different employee groups. For example, you can create views by offices, teams, employee skill sets or other attributes. There are also detailed an summary views, productivity and availability views. Whatever you need to see, Outlook Optics™ will help you view and mange your workforce better.

This Office 365 group calendar app view shows 5 outlook calendars over 2 weeks, but views are configurable. You could configure it to show 30 people over 3 months, appointments by team, customer, project, availability, productivity, type of work – whatever you need.

Example Outlook calendar views

How Timewatch makes Outlook better for your business?

Timewatch’s Outlook Optics™ enhances Microsoft 365 group calendar views and a range of new customized enhancements you can add to your user experience as needed. Enhancements include:

  • Enhanced multi-employee views
  • New appointment types
  • Powerful analytics and reporting
  • Utilization, productivity and availability views
  • Custom views: Company-wide calendar, Office calendar, Team calendar, Vacation calendar, etc.
  • Centralized calendar management
  • Employee skills matrix
  • Conflict management
  • Enhanced appointment security
  • Modular – build the system with the exact feature needed

Enhancing Outlook Appointment Types for Better Control and Analytics

Outlook offers five options for coding appointments: Busy, Free, Tentative, Out of Office and Working Elsewhere.

Outlook Optics™ makes this configurable, so you can create the exact categories you need to assist schedulers in getting the right people in the right place at the right time with clear and direct internal communication. Timewatch improves productivity for schedulers and staff.

  • If someone’s calendar is Free does that mean they can be booked for a project?
  • If someone is Out of Office are they available for work or are they busy? What are they doing?
  • Can a Tentative booking be ignored if customer work comes along?
  • Where do you put vacations or time off? Are Vacations busy or out of office?
  • How can you request time off? What about internal meetings?
  • Is someone Busy doing productive work, or busy on admin? Can I book them for customer work?
  • How can you make sure someone has the right skills for a job?
  • How productive is my team / office?
  • Who is available with XYZ skill to work next week to deliver ABC service to a customer?
  • How much time have we scheduled for Customer X or Project Y?

Timewatch answers all these Outlook calendar questions to make Outlook the best product it can be for you and your business.

Outlook offers five options for classifying appointments: Busy, Free, Tentative, Out of Office and Working Elsewhere.

This is too restrictive for businesses, who need to classify work by type, billable / non-billable, area etc. Outlook Optics™ makes this configurable, so you can create the exact types you need to classify work to do. This helps everyone understand work calendars, reassign work, report on work done, helps schedulers get the right people in the right place at the right time with clear and direct internal communication.

Outlook appointment types

Enhancing Outlook Availability Search

Imagine you need to find someone in a busy team of 30 people who has design skills and is available to work a half day for a customer next week.

You can search availability in Outlook, but you need know who you want to search and when.

Search Outlook Calendar availability, capacity, skill etc.
Specify the skill, attribute or type of person you need.
Sort by capacity, so you see the most available people
An availability summary help you see what people’s future availability looks like.

With Outlook Optics™ you can search by employee skill and sort by availability to see who is available. It’s easy, it’s fast, it evens out the allocation of work and allows companies to optimize employee utilization.

Other Outlook Group Calendar App Enhancements

Outlook has just date/time, Subject, Location fields, and any other important information can be entered into the Notes.

Timewatch enhances Outlook so that important fields such as Customer, Project, Customer Contact etc. can be created and allocated to Outlook appointments. Companies create and add the fields they need, which ensures data validation and allows these fields to be used in analytics and reporting.

Timewatch can make Outlook even better for your business in a number of ways, including:

  • Providing utilization and productivity details: Timewatch can provide instant visibility of employee, team, office utilization productivity and availability.
  • Providing insights into your time usage: Timewatch can track how you spend your time, so you can see where your time is going and identify areas where you can improve your efficiency.
  • Enhancing Appointments with important Company data fields: Add customer, project, type of work or any other fields your organization needs to track on Outlook appointments.
  • Enhancing Outlook with employee skill matrix / grouping: Adding skills, team, office and other important employee attributes and grouping information improves scheduling and analytics.
  • Conflict Management
  • Reporting and Analytics: Timewatch can generate reports on every aspect of your organization’s Outlook calendar data, so you can share this information with your team or clients. This can help you track your progress and make sure you’re on track to meet your goals.
  • Automating timesheet entry: With Timewatch can automatically import your Outlook appointments into a timesheet, so you don’t have to manually enter your time. This can save you hours each week.
  • Integrating with other systems: Timewatch can integrate with other systems, such as your CRM or accounting software. This can help you keep your data in sync and streamline your workflows.

What businesses use Timewatch to improve efficiency and productivity?

  • A Training Company:
    Training companies need to be able to create custom views, for example office calendar views, trainer calendar views, room views, course views etc. Search facilities are needed to not only search trainer availability, but also the different skills or courses to to locate the right resource for a course or training service, and maximize productivity and chargeability.
  • A Software company:
    Software developers can use Timewatch to schedule and plan employee workload, as well as track time. A huge benefit of using our time tracking with scheduling is that we can automate or semi automate time tracking – our system knows what employees are supposed to be working on, so can turn schedules into timesheets – users just update / approve time to be added. This saves employees 2-4 hours a week.
  • A Marketing agency:
    In a busy agency it is crucial to be able to quickly and easily find people with the right skill and the availability needed to do client the work. We help businesses manage their workforce better, save time and can even help make time tracking simpler, easier and faster and more accurately. This information can then be used to bill clients and ensure that the agency is meeting its deadlines.
  • Consultancy Businesses:
    Consultants often manage their own calendars, which can make it difficult to know of their workload and availability, especially with hybrid and remote working. Timewatch is a lifeline for organizations that use Outlook as it allows them visibility of their employee schedules and allows centralized management and reporting on employee workload, productivity and availability.
  • Not for profit:
    Charities need efficient, cost effective solutions to help quantify their work for best practices, meet applicable regulations and / or help justify and acquire funding. Timewatch not only helps ‘not for profits’ achieve this, we also provide incentives to make implementing Timewatch easier.
  • Businesses with Hybrid or Remote workers:
    Keeping track of workers activities and availability is made harder when they are not in an office environment, which increased visibility of employee Outlook calendars resolves.
  • Any organization that uses Outlook and needs visibility of staff workload and availability.
    If you’re looking for a way to make Outlook even better for your business, Timewatch is the best option. It can help you save time, track your time usage, and generate reports that can help you improve your productivity and efficiency.

Let us show you how you can use Outlook to manage your workforce better

Contact us

Timewatch has over 20 years experience enhancing Outlook and helping customers use Outlook more effectively in their businesses. Even if you need help with just one or two of the Outlook enhancements we have listed, we can help. We provide a configurable solution, so you can start with the base system and add just the features you need.

If you have any questions or want to see the system in operation, contact us via chat, or book a free call with a product specialist.

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Learn more about Office 365 group calendars with Outlook Optics™

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