14 July 2014

Approve Reservations With Resource Booking Add-on

Calendar Browser logoWhen you are using the Outlook add-on for booking of corporate resources, you might want to have a manager approve some of the reservations. We have now published a FAQ on how it can be done.

Book resources in the Outlook calendar.
Calendar Browser is a Microsoft Outlook add-on that gives a simple way to book resources within an organization. If a user knows how to make an appointment in the Outlook calendar he or she can book a resource by simply making an appointment in the calendar of that resource.  No separate software is needed.

Different calendar types
Calendar Browser works with public folder calendars and mailbox calendars, including personal calendars, and you can use a mix of calendar types in the same installation. But for the resources where you wish to let managers approve of resource reservations before the resource is actually booked, you must use Exchange room/resource type mailboxes.

Add Exchange resource mailboxes
The Exchange resource mailboxes can easily be added to Calendar Browser as resource calendars. They will work just like any other Calendar Browser resource calendars and have access to all the features of the Solution, like resource descriptions and search.
Calendar Browser Add Calendar Dialog
Define resource mailbox properties
In the Properties dialog of each resource mailbox, the Exchange Admin can define one or more delegates who are responsible for approving or declining booking  requests.

Maybe you want to let some Calendar Browser users book resources directly, without the need for approval from a delegate? In the same Properties dialog you can also decide if all or only some of the users should need a resource booking approval.

When you require booking approvals, users book the resources as usual in their Outlook calendars. The delegate will receive the request by e-mail automatically and can approve or decline it.

The person who booked the resource will get auto-emails too, first a message that the reservation is pending and then another one when the booking is approved or declined.
Thumbs Up
When the delegate approves of the resource reservation, he/she will add Calender Browser properties to the booking, that is, select project and maybe book supplies.

I think most organizations only use the approving requirement for some of their bookable resources, as it means some extra work for managers. However, when it is necessary to request a booking approval, like with the limousine in the New calendar image above, Calendar Browser can help you with that too!

By Peter Kalmstrom
CEO and Systems Designer Business Solutions