Microsoft Bookings


What is MS Bookings?

Microsoft Bookings is a robust online scheduling tool with the M365 tenant that supports the calendaring needs of faculty, staff, and students who wish to manage their time and connect with others. 

Why Use Bookings?

Use Bookings as an alternative to the manual scheduling and maintenance of calendars.  Bookings provides the convenience of self-service through a customizable webpage that assists users with finding available times and booking/managing appointments.

Instructors can use Bookings for providing their availability for things like office hours, academic advising appointments, tutoring, etc., and allow students to book appointments with them.

Staff can use Bookings to provide their availability to both internal and external colleagues and allow them to schedule a time for a meeting or event.  Staff may also find Bookings to be an appropriate solution for reserving equipment. Bookings should not be used to book space on campus.

Bookings can be integrated with your Outlook calendar and Microsoft Teams.

Note: Bookings was designed to support an organization where one or more individuals offer one or more services. The tool was primarily developed for use by small businesses as opposed to academic institutions. Therefore, the language used within the application differs slightly from that of University verbiage.

Who Can Use Bookings?

Bookings is included in Princeton's Microsoft portal and is available to Princeton users with an Exchange account. Users must be signed into the Microsoft portal with their unique Princeton NetID and Password.

Please note: The use of Service Accounts in Bookings is currently under assessment and can be approved on a case-by-case basis.  

Features and Benefits of Bookings

Accessing Bookings

Bookings is available to all Princeton University faculty, staff, and students as part of the Office365 Suite.  Log in to Princeton’s Microsoft Portal (portal.office.com) with your Princeton NetID and Password.

Bookings may be accessed from the list of available applications within the portal.  If the Bookings icon does not appear on the left navigation menu or the main app screen, you may need to click the All Apps tab.

Help and Resources

General SupportIT Support and Operations Center (SOC)helpdesk@princeton.edu
609-258-4357 (8-HELP)
Microsoft SupportMicrosoft Documentation

MS Bookings Resources

eLearningLinkedIn Learning (available to all Princeton Users)

Bookings Essentials Video

Quick TutorialNarrated Slideshow

Bookings Quick Tutorial

SPOT TrainingMS Teams Channel for Bookings

Bookings Channel in SPOT

Bookings @ Princeton WebsiteSteps for configuration and maintenance of Bookings Calendars

Bookings at Princeton

 

 


New User Tips

Important Naming Convention Considerations

To avoid issues conflicts with duplicate names, do not name your Bookings Calendars with your NETID or Name as it appears in the University's Global Address Book.  Please name your Booking Calendar appropriately to reflect the unique service(s) you intend to provide.

We strongly recommend using the prefix "Bookings-".  Example:  Bookings-PACServices

Note:  When a Bookings calendar is provisioned, the name you give it is reflected in its URL and searchable in the Global Address Book.  You can customize the appearance of the name on the front-end by changing your "Business Name".

Caveats to Consider when Setting Up a New Service

When setting up a new Service, ask yourself whether this Service is intended for a single-attendee or if multiple attendees should be able to book the same Staff member at the same time.  This VERY IMPORTANT criteria is entered in the Services section in the Maximum Number of Attendees field.  If a Service is created with two or more attendees in this field, the 'group' feature is enabled and the field will be available for editing in the future - though it cannot be transitioned to a 'single-attendee' Service.  Likewise, if a Service is created for a single attendee, the group feature will remain disabled and cannot be edited in the future to enable the group feature (the number in this field can never be changed to "1").  

Set Availability to Sync with Outlook

The Bookings Calendar owner needs to enable “Bookable when Staff are Free” to sync Staff Outlook Calendar availability with Bookings.

Cancel Appointments in Bookings, Not in Outlook

Deleting a Bookings appointment from a staff member's Outlook calendar will not cancel it in Bookings. Users need to cancel the booking in Bookings instead, so that both the staff person and the customer who booked the appointment receive a cancellation notice.

Add an Additional Administrator to Your Bookings Page That is Unbookable

If you are unavailable to cancel your appointments, having an additional administrator on your Booking Page will allow them to cancel on your behalf. Make sure that for each of your available services you have yourself or whoever is available to be booked with for that service selected and not the additional person, so they cannot be booked with. If you do not select yourself or whoever else is available to be booked with, it will default to anyone. 

Set up Time Out of the Office in Bookings

Bookings has trouble reading recurring time away from the office.  When you/your staff intend to be away from the office for a duration of time, make sure the time is reflected in the Bookings Calendar.

Tip: Select Calendar from the left navigation pane and click Time Off (located at the top) to schedule recurring time away.

Set Your Business Hours to Reflect Unbookable Time

From the Business Information section of the left navigation pane, set up your Business Hours to allow for time you/your staff should not be booked or show time as available (like lunch time, for example).

Explore Access Levels


  1. Administrator - Can edit all settings, add and remove staff, create, edit, or delete bookings.
  2. Team Member - Can manage bookings on their own calendar and their availability in the Bookings Mailbox. When adding or editing
        a booking in their calendar, they'll be assigned as Staff.
  3. Scheduler - Can manage bookings on the calendar and customer details.  They have read-only access to settings, staff, and
        services.
  4. Viewer - Can see all the bookings on the calendar, but cannot modify or delete them.  They have 'read-only' access to settings.
  5. Guest - Can be assigned to bookings, but they cannot open the Bookings mailbox.

 

Deleting a Calendar

To delete a Bookings Calendar, we ask that you do two things:

  1.  Go to the "Business Name" located on the Business Information tab and edit the name to include the prefix (PENDING DELETE).  Example: (PENDING DELETE) Amy's Office Hours.
  2.  Submit a ticket to SharePoint support to request that your calendar be deleted.  Please be sure to include the exact name of your calendar, any administrators of the calendar, and indicated that you have edited the Business Name per the instructions above.