Microsoft's Scheduling Service Gets Facebook Support
- By Kurt Mackie
- October 20, 2016
Organizations can now link their Facebook pages to Microsoft's new scheduling service called Bookings.
According to Microsoft's announcement Wednesday, individuals can book appointments with an organization using that organization's Facebook page. Setup takes place through the Facebook portal for administrators, as described here. Microsoft Bookings access gets added through a Partner Apps and Services selection within the portal, which will then connect Facebook with the Microsoft Bookings service's calendar.
End users will see a "Book Now" button on Facebook once the setup has been completed. They'll see options to select the service, staff and time for an appointment. Currently, Facebook users just have one limitation compared with the Microsoft Bookings Web portal. They can only book up to "two months in advance" when using Facebook, Microsoft's announcement clarified.
The Microsoft Bookings service is just available in the U.S. and Canadian markets right now. However, Microsoft intends to broaden access to Microsoft Bookings globally starting next month.
The service, aimed at small businesses, is offered as part of Office 365 Business Premium subscriptions. Organizations using the service create a Web page that lets its potential customers schedule appointments, even with specific personnel. The bookings then show up in employee calendars. Microsoft Bookings was first unveiled as a preview back in July.
Microsoft eventually plans to roll out mobile apps for accessing the service, but it's not clear when they'll be available.
Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.