Help & Support

Set automatic or manual scheduling for your projects

written by
Emily Chen
Last updated:
February 13, 2024
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When it comes to managing scheduling for your projects, you have two options to choose from: use automated scheduling for a hands-off approach to get sessions booked, or manual scheduling for times when you want more control over your calendar. The choice is yours!

Automatic scheduling for projects

With automatic scheduling, simply set up your calendar, availability, and scheduling preferences, and our system will automate booking confirmed sessions within these guidelines. Automatic scheduling is available for all 1:1 moderated projects.

Connect your calendar

This is the first step to enabling automatic scheduling for your project. To enable automatic scheduling, you (and your collaborators) must all have your calendars connected to User Interviews.

1. Connect your calendar to User Interviews from the Availability page. Click on your username when logged in, select "Account settings" from the menu, and select the “Availability” tab.

💡Note: You can also connect your calendar from the Integrations page under “Account settings”, or from within the workspace.

2. Click the “Connect calendar” button. Connecting your calendar will allow you to easily see your availability and automatically have calendar events created for your confirmed sessions. You should now be able to see your synced calendar in the view.

(Note: We currently only support automatic scheduling with Google calendar. Learn more about UI’s calendar integrations)

3. Set your timezone and availability range for your working hours on the right sidebar. For working hours, you can indicate the specific days and hours you are available. This setting applies to the individual account level and will affect all 1:1 projects launched (only applies to automatic scheduling).

4. Your calendar and availability are now set up and ready for scheduling sessions!

How to set up automated scheduling

1. Select “Automatic” from the “Scheduling type” dropdown in the “Manage availability” tab.

2. Invite collaborators to your project, if you’d like to include them in scheduling sessions. You can add collaborators using the “Add session attendees” dropdown and entering their email address.

3. Assign attendance defaults for each collaborator—UI will automatically use these attendance rules for every confirmed session.

You can set the following session attendance options:

  • Moderator: This person is the moderator of the session and will be invited
  • Required: This person's attendance is required (e.g. for note taking) and will be invited
  • Optional: This person's attendance is optional but will be included on calendar invites
  • Not included: This person isn't expected to come and will not be invited

Once a session is scheduled, you can also set attendees to either Required or Optional attendance on the Confirmed Sessions Page. Any editor can come in and add project collaborators to either of those roles at any time.

  • Required attendees will be invited to the session
  • Optional attendees will be invited to the session, but indicated as optional

4. Set the session location. Navigate to the session location drop down menu. You’ll see the option to set a manual session link, or use the moderator’s connected Google Meet or Zoom account to generate meeting links automatically.

💡Note that User Interviews will always default the session location to the moderator’s connected account. So if you need to change moderators for any reason, simply update that person’s role to “Moderator”, and the session location options will update to the new moderator’s connected accounts.

For ReOps folks, this means you (as the project owner) can easily set up a project on the behalf of someone else (the session moderator), setting the session location to their connected account—without receiving any unnecessary calendar invites.

5. Set your scheduling rules. Set the project:

  • Start and end dates
  • Minimum scheduling notice
  • Buffer time
  • Start time increment
  • Maximum number of confirmed sessions per day (if you want to dedicate only part of your day to research)

You can also choose to enable or disable participant rescheduling, which allows participants to reschedule their sessions themselves. Rescheduled sessions will respect your minimum scheduling notice.

6. And that’s it! Our system will cross check all calendars and automate booking confirmed sessions within these guidelines.

💡Note: If you are using automatic scheduling with no collaborators, the setup process is the same—as the session moderator, you will be the default owner of the calendar event, and the session location will default to your connected account. You can add collaborators to your project at any time!

Manual scheduling for projects

Manual scheduling is useful for times when you want more control over your calendar time slots and schedule.

How to set up manual scheduling

1. Select “Manual” from the “Scheduling type” dropdown in the “Manage availability” tab.

2. Indicate your scheduling preferences using the right side bar.

3. Click on the calendar to set your availability manually. To learn more about updating your calendar for manual scheduling, check out our guide here.

Any questions or feedback? Reach us at projects@userinterviews.com.

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