It's advised to read this article until the end and then begin scheduling, it will help answer a few questions as you progress.
Create a monthly schedule using Events
When you are ready to make shifts available for signup, you will want to click on the ORGANIZE tab and top right corner click on 'Create New'. Select 'Events' and press the Create button.
You will then have the opportunity to give your Event a name, location, and time frame. You can edit this information later, so don't worry about getting it perfect.
The American Red Cross team suggests creating two monthly event schedules, one for Clinical roles and another for Non-Clinical roles. This will provide you with the controls you need to review applications that require more qualifications.
So give it a name like 'Clinical Shifts April 2021'.
Go ahead and search for the location, if you have more than one location within the same schedule, you can select the city or region here as you'll be able to add more locations at a shift level.
The start and end time is important as it's the time frame for you to schedule shifts. So you may wish to start with April 1 and end with April 30 in this example. It's really up to you, but it's not advised to publish more than a month as it may be too long for volunteers to navigate all the shift options.
Next, you will be taken to the Details tab within the Event to complete additional information like a general description. The Permissions tab is where you can control where you wish to review or auto-approve applications and/or shift requests.
Clinical shifts: you will want to make sure you review at either the application stage or the scheduling stage. It's not advisable to review at both stages as that will create more work for yourself.
Non-Clinical Shifts: if you are happy to accept general applicants for these roles, you can change both to 'Auto-accept', which will save you a lot of time and the system will send the volunteer a confirmation email right away.
If you are unsure about these settings, feel free to ask someone on the Timecounts support for advice. Learn more about permissions
Events have standalone public pages that can be shared, similar to Meetup or Eventbrite. You can personalize the events with a cover image. Feel free to select your own photo or download template event images. It's important to make clear to people signing up the two pathways for Clinical and Non-Clinical sign-ups.
The General Signup form will be linked to your event by default. If you are on the Premium plan or higher, you will be able to link a different form or customize the thank you message that volunteers see once they've submitted their application on the 'Signup Form' tab.
Now you're all set to start building your schedule!
Building your Schedule
Click on the Schedule tab on the left-hand side and you'll see that it will provide an easy onboarding flow.
You'll notice as soon as you put your cursor in the search box that a number of pre-established roles are available. So if you are happy with these roles, go ahead and select the ones that fit with the schedule you are building (Clinical or Non-Clinical).
The next screen will ask you what locations you will have in your schedule. If you search and don't see the specific location you need, then manually enter it and utilize the 'place name' field to get specific with the building name. Don't forget to click the blue button to update the map so you can save this location.
If you need to make changes later, that's no problem. You'll see a button for Roles and Locations where you can make edits and updates.
Click the 'Add Shift button to start building your schedule. On the free and essential plans, there are no limits to the number of shifts you can create, however, if you wish to build your schedule a little faster you can upgrade to Premium to unlock repeating shifts.