You've created your event, and now you need to create your event schedule. Open up the 'Schedule' tab of your event.
Timecounts will guide you through schedule creation.
1) Add Roles
What jobs do you need at your event? Security? Registration? Ambassador? Those jobs are roles!
There are three things you can add to your schedule: roles, locations, and shifts. You can add multiple locations and shifts for each role. You can also add a 'reference' to each shift, which lets you further describe the role for that particular shift. So if I need an Usher in the main lobby at the Royal Theatre, Usher would be the role, Royal Theatre the location, and 'Main Lobby' the reference for the shift.
To create your first role, type the role name in the text box and click enter.
Note: For your next event, you'll notice that roles you've used in previous events will appear as options in the text box as you type. These are called Role Templates, because you can select one of these old roles and update it for your event (e.g., change the description or skills). You can also decide whether you'd like to update the Role Template (i.e., write over the old details), or keep the details of the original Role intact for your next event. Role Templates are a fantastic way to save time writing out descriptions or editing role settings.
When creating or editing a role, you're given the chance to add a description about that role. The role description is public - volunteers will see it when signing up for shifts. Short descriptions work best, since the role description appears on the same page as shift selection.
Type in the Skills box to attach skills from the Timecounts skills library to your roles. When a volunteer is credited for a role with skills attached to it, those skills will appear on their profile card as validated skills. The next time you need someone with bartending experience, for example, you'll be able to quickly search to see who has bartending as a validated skill on their profile.
Set Different Permissions for This Role
Select this box if the role you're creating or editing needs to have different visibility or application settings. You can choose to set a role as Public or available to Community Members only. You can also decide here if you'd like shifts for this role to auto-confirm when people signup, or appear in the schedule as shift 'requests' that require admin confirmation.
Once you've added a few roles, your list should look like this:
To go back and edit a role, click the edit pencil. To remove a role from the list, click the 'x'.
When you're ready, click 'Next' to move on to the next step.
2) Add Locations
Every event in Timecounts has at least one location, which is set when you create the event. But if you're scheduling volunteers in more than one location, you're able to add additional locations to the schedule. If no additional locations are needed, just click 'Next'.
To add a location, start typing in the location text box to search through Google Maps. Select the right location from the dropdown list that appears. If your location doesn't display, click 'Create a Custom Place' to add the address manually.
If you need to schedule people in locations with very specific names (for example, 'Front Entrance', or 'First Floor Lounge', you can edit the location Place Name by clicking the edit pencil beside the location you just added. Or you can click on 'Create a Custom Place' to start from scratch.
Note: you will only see the Place Name of a location in the schedule, and volunteers will see the location Place Name when signing up for shifts. But it's important to connect locations with full addresses if possible, so confirmed volunteers can see the location on a map.
Once you've added your locations (or skipped this step) you're ready to add shifts!
3) Add Shifts
Once you've added your locations (or skipped this step) you're ready to see the schedule and add shifts!
Shifts are the specific time frames that someone will be volunteering for. Every shift has a role, location, and an optional 'reference'. When you create a shift, it will assume the name and description of the role and location it's attached to. But you can further differentiate one shift from another with the optional 'Reference' descriptor. This is one or two words to describe the particulars of that shift. Reference can be used to further describe location (e.g., Front Lobby), or shift tasks (e.g., 'Standing', 'Matinee', 'Door').
Select the Date and Start Time of the shift.
Select the duration. The end time will auto-populate based on the duration you enter for the shift.
Set a minimum number and maximum number of people who can be assigned to this shift. Minimums and maximums help guide your recruitment and schedule management.
If you select 'Start a waiting list after maximum volunteers confirmed', volunteers will see the shift still available for signup, but with the button 'Join Waitlist' instead of 'Select Shift'. Note that there is no order to the waitlist. If 'start a waiting list' isn't checked, the shift will appear on the shift signup page as full, and closed for signup.
Shift limits and waitlist list status can always be edited later - simply click on the shift and select 'edit shift' to change the settings.
When you're happy with the settings of your new shift, click either 'Create' or 'Create and Add Another'. Create and Add Another saves your shift to the schedule but keeps the 'New Shift' pop-up open, with your location and role pre-selected for you to add the next shift quickly.
If you're planning a multi-day event and the shift you're adding will repeat on later days, you can set-up repeating shifts right in the 'New Shift' pop-up. Select the desired repeating pattern in the 'Repeat' dropdown. When you create the shift, multiple shifts will appear in your schedule, one for each instance in your repeating pattern. Note: this shift repeats, but different people can be assigned to it at different times.
Choose the 'Custom' pattern to create more complicated patterns, such as 'every Monday-Friday'.
Viewing the Schedule
To view the shifts you've added to the schedule, use the dropdowns and toggles at the top of the screen. At this point, all of the shifts in your schedule will be empty, so they appear as white. But as they fill, they'll turn blue.
There are three calendar options: Day, Week, and Month. Clicking on the arrows beside the date range will move you through your schedule according to the calendar selected. You can also click on the date itself to open a drop-down month calendar, if you need to jump to a specific day.
This screenshot shows a schedule with the Day Calendar. The blue shifts are full, the striped blue shifts are partially full. White shifts are empty. Click on the arrows on either side of the date at the top of the screen to move from day to day. Click on the schedule itself and drag left or right to scroll the timeframe.
This screenshot shows a schedule with the Week Calendar. Shifts on the same day stack on top of one another, and the time of the shift has moved to the top of the block. The circular arrow icon on the shifts indicates that those shifts are part of a repeating pattern of shifts. Click on a shift to reveal its details, edit its settings, or assign someone to it.
This screenshot shows a schedule with the month calendar. Click on a day of the month to display a list of that day's shifts in the left column. You can then click on a shift in the left column to reveal its details, edit its settings, or assign someone.
Finishing your Schedule
Continue to add shifts and positions until your schedule is complete. When you've created all of the shifts and needed for your event, it's time to publish your event and schedule! Once the schedule is published, you'll be able to preview the signup process on your event public page, and start recruiting volunteers.