Customer Success

Customer Success

Streamline scheduling for professional services: Increase billable hours and client satisfaction

Connect with potential clients fast so they don’t lose interest or seek out a competitor.

Alisa Bartash

Alisa Bartash
May 16, 2024

10 min read

Streamline scheduling for professional services: Increase billable hours and client satisfaction

These days, there's an app for pretty much every part of your workflow in professional services, making it tough to figure out which ones are actually worth the investment.

So, take a second to think about it … which app in your tech stack brings the most value to you? What makes that tool valuable? You’re probably thinking of a tool that frees you of manual tasks so you can focus on what matters most: your clients. 

Another manual, time-consuming task you can automate? Finding a time to meet with your clients.

Calendly has transformed a largely manual and cumbersome scheduling process for us into a well-oiled machine with centrally located data and the right level of visibility for reporting, trending, and general management.

Testimonial author

Katherine Anderson

Director of Operations, Coaching and Consulting Services at Leadership Circle

From consulting firms to law firms and beyond, businesses across the professional services industry are investing in scheduling automation.

Why? Because scheduling automation helps you: 

  • Grow your client list: Making your client intake process quick and easy helps you connect with potential clients when they’re ready so they don’t lose interest or seek out a competing firm.  

  • Increase billable hours: Reducing administrative scheduling tasks with integrations and automations helps you build client relationships and focus on work that increases profitability and growth.

  • Provide best-in-class service: Being readily accessible for your clients builds trust, establishes credibility, and enables you to provide an exceptional client experience.   

Let’s explore three ways professional services organizations are using scheduling automation to grow their business.

1. Make appointment booking easy for potential clients 

When you’re Googling new software vendors, which company would you trust? One with a website that’s easy to navigate, provides detailed product descriptions, and clear pictures of the user interface, or one that takes forever to load, has an expired security certificate, and contains spelling errors?

A first impression often starts before an actual conversation takes place. What’s one way you can start new client relationships off on the right foot? Integrate scheduling automation into your client intake process and make it easy for prospects to schedule intro calls at their convenience.

How does this work in real life? Let’s look at “Nora”, who runs her own consulting firm. As a solopreneur, she’s struggled to balance her time between finding new clients and working on projects for her existing ones. She used to spend so much time emailing back-and-forth with prospective clients to schedule consultations and reminding them to show up, that she struggled to meet client deadlines. And once she finally connected with prospects, she often felt defeated when, early in the conversation, she realized the prospect wasn’t a good fit.

Now her life is easier because she uses Calendly in these three ways, and her potential clients love the streamlined booking experience:   

  • Embedding a booking page on her website eliminates the back-and-forth of scheduling, saving Nora and her prospect time.

  • Asking qualifying questions ensures every prospect booking a consultation meets Nora’s criteria and is a good fit for her services.

  • Sending email and SMS reminders to prospects before their consultations has made meeting no-shows a thing of the past. 

Gif illustrating how a user fills out a website contact form and is routed to a Calendly booking page.
Speed up your sales cycle by letting high-value leads schedule at the peak of their interest, eliminating the delays that cause them to buy elsewhere.

Book more new clients faster

GeographicFarm, a real estate marketing and business development consulting firm, needed a better way to grow their client list. The back-and-forth of manual scheduling was not only a hassle for their consultants and the busy real estate agents they were trying to connect with, but it was limiting the number of new client consultations they could book each day. 

After testing a few different scheduling solutions, the team chose Calendly because it’s user-friendly and everyone could jump right in. Another huge perk: Calendly integrates seamlessly with the company’s Salesforce CRM, so they could track prospecting campaigns from start to finish. Calendly’s scheduling automation also made it easier for sales team members to connect with prospects sooner. 

Here’s how GeographicFarm started booking more than 500 meetings per month and closing more sales with Calendly: 

  • Sending outbound emails with a link that takes prospects to a Calendly booking page, where they can choose a convenient meeting time in a single click.

  • Scheduling meetings with the first available sales rep in a round-robin fashion.

  • Asking custom questions on their booking page so reps start calls with key information to have productive conversations from the get-go, such as the average value of the homes the prospect sells, their marketing budget, and the services they’re interested in.

  • Using Calendly’s Salesforce integration to automatically create a new record, or update an existing one, as soon as meetings are booked. 

By offering more options for intro calls, consultants are booking more meetings with prospective clients and bringing in more revenue. 

We have the ability to track the number of consultations booked. So we know which messages drive people to set consultations, and we can adjust our marketing accordingly.

Matthew Morrison

Business Development Manager at GeographicFarm

Strengthen your outbound strategy

Whether you have a dedicated client acquisition team like GeographicFarm, or you’re a solopreneur reaching out to prospective clients yourself, today’s market is competitive. Successful firms are proactively reaching out to prospects in order to bring on new clients and grow their businesses.

From including your calendar availability directly in outbound emails and connecting with prospects on LinkedIn, to booking a follow-up in real time before an intro call is over, you can easily share your availability and get more done in less time with Calendly’s browser extension. That way, prospects can book time with you as soon as you have their attention, and you’ll have more time to focus on signing new clients and moving client work forward.

Gif showing that from the Event Types tab, you can either share your availability or instantly book a meeting. There are two booking view options — a "full calendar" view with contextual schedule details and an "available times" view for screen sharing.
From the Event Types tab, you can either share your availability or instantly book a meeting. There are two booking view options — a "full calendar" view with contextual schedule details and an "available times" view that's great for screen sharing.

2. Improve productivity to increase billable hours

Seven in 10 professional services organizations are looking to enhance their performance by investing more in digital tools to keep up with client demands, increase efficiency, and stay ahead of their competition. That’s why consulting firms, law firms, accounting firms, and more are investing in scheduling tools like Calendly — they reduce time spent on administrative tasks, like coordinating calendars, reminding clients about meetings, and sending follow-ups.

X post by @investing_law with reply from @GregBunner discussing Calendly usage among law firms, banks, and CPA firms
This X conversation between @investing_law and @GregBunner reveals how much time law firms and CPA firms can save with Calendly's scheduling tools.

Digitize scheduling for improved productivity

Mike Morse Law Firm, Michigan’s largest personal injury law firm, was scheduling client meetings “the old way,” and knew they needed a more efficient, digital solution.

With over 500 calls a day, the firm’s phone and practice management systems had a hard time keeping up with the volume. Meetings sometimes disappeared from calendars, or there were conference call snafus, which wasn’t good for the firm’s reputation. 

Lawyers and their clients were frustrated by their outdated scheduling process, which involved clients having to call an administrative assistant who then needed to track down a lawyer to schedule a call. It generally took multiple calls and lengthy email chains to schedule a single meeting. This reduced the amount of time lawyers and admins could spend on important client work, and made it hard for clients to get the support they needed.

After a few team members tested Calendly and saved more than 12 hours in a month, adoption soared to 100%. Not only did it take less time to schedule appointments, but team members also reduced administrative tasks by integrating Calendly with other tools in their toolstack, including Microsoft Outlook to instantly add suggested meeting times to emails, Hubspot to keep CRM records up-to-date, and Zoom to auto-generate video conferencing links. 

They also automated meeting reminders to reduce no-shows, maintained client communication with Calendly Workflows, and discovered one of their favorite features: Meeting Polls.

Meeting Polls let lawyers and admins quickly find the best time for multi-person calls without the need for long email chains. All they do is send a quick poll to find the most popular times, and book the meeting.

I love Calendly Meeting Polls. I send a poll and get automatic results so I know when everyone is going to be available for a meeting.

Testimonial author

Kate Nachazel

Business Coach at Fireproof Performance

Calendly’s automations give the firm’s lawyers more time to focus on their clients, while the administrative staff can focus on important tasks, like proofreading legal documents and organizing court dates. “Our lawyers are far more engaged with our clients,” says John Georgatos, CIO. “It enhanced their roles by giving them more time, and not having to deal with the minutiae of calendars.”

3. Deliver an exceptional client experience

Investing in client experience is not just about providing best-in-class service. It’s a strategy that touches every aspect of your business and has a huge impact on your short- and long-term success. 

Happy clients are more likely to be loyal over time, pay a premium for your services, and recommend your firm to others. A recent study found companies that focus on client experience are 60% more profitable and have an 80% increase in revenue.  

But what actually makes a great experience? Speed, convenience, and consistency according to PwC’s latest customer experience research. Scheduling automation helps you accomplish all three: 

Meetings are scheduled faster and occur sooner: Whether you need to schedule a one-on-one meeting with a client or a group webinar with multiple clients, meetings can be scheduled in one click. And without the back-and-forth of multiple emails or phone calls, you have more time in your day to connect with clients, making you more accessible. 

Clients can schedule at their convenience: Including a scheduling link in your email signature or LinkedIn profile, adding suggested times to client emails, and embedding a booking page on your website or client portal are multiple ways clients can schedule time with you whenever they need to get in touch. 

You’re delivering a consistent experience: A simple booking process ensures every client interaction starts off smoothly and professionally. It also eliminates the possibility of manual errors or miscommunications. Automated notifications and reminders help clients remember to show up at their scheduled time, and follow-ups keep clients consistently engaged between meetings.

Deliver best-in-class service to increase retention

The customer success team at Conductor, a company that helps businesses customize marketing to fit their needs, wanted to give more customers personalized attention to enhance their experience and reduce churn. Mergim Selimaj, Conductor’s customer success manager, knew his team could accomplish this with scheduling automation.

Mergim’s team wasn’t operating at maximum efficiency, and they were spending too much time coordinating calls with customers. To complicate matters, some customers wanted to connect more frequently than others. That gave Mergim an idea: Give customers an easy way to schedule calls whenever they needed, freeing up his team to focus on helping customers, and customers who wanted to connect more frequently could do so at their convenience.

Conductor improved their customer experience with Calendly by:

  • Embedding a Calendly scheduling page on the Help page on their website

  • Adding a scheduling link to each customer success rep’s email signature

  • Distributing calls round-robin so reps can address concerns quickly

By enabling customers to schedule calls whenever they needed and adding more value to their customers, Conductor quadrupled its number of customer contacts and saw a 30% increase in customer renewals.

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Improve productivity, billable hours, and client satisfaction

With only so many hours in a day, focusing more on client work and delivering an exceptional client experience can give you the competitive edge you need to increase revenue. 

By digitizing your scheduling process, you’ll enjoy time savings, gain loyal clients, and attract more new business. 

See why professional services firms and organizations of all types trust Calendly to simplify scheduling and deliver best-in-class service. Sign up for free today.

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Ready to make scheduling easier than ever?

Ready to make scheduling easier than ever?

Alisa Bartash

Alisa Bartash

Alisa is a Senior Solutions Marketing Manager at Calendly.

Don't leave your prospects, customers, and candidates waiting

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Calendly eliminates the scheduling back and forth and helps you hit goals faster. Get started in seconds.