In general, I am meetings-averse. Most of the time I find them of questionable value, with attendee lists that defy logical explanation, and a frequency which is almost never merited. They are also frustratingly difficult to schedule at a time that suits all of the attendees. Accordingly, anything that makes the business of meetings easier, and less of a hassle to organize, is a useful tool in my book. When is Good, a new, simple scheduling web app designed to take some of the calendar-fumbling out of planning a meeting, definitely fits that description.
Part of the beauty of When is Good is its absolute simplicity. At no point do you have to even register for an account, which is great because I’ve registered for so many sites that I lost track of them long ago. In fact, at this point, lack of registration alone is a feature I look for in a web app. On the other hand, if you are the registering type, you can create an account to track your events and meetings history.
All you really need to do to access When is Good’s main functionality is click the “Get Started” button on the web site’s homepage. From there, you’ll be taken to a default calendar with the next 21 days displayed, with each day broken down into 1-hour blocks from 6 AM to 8 PM. All of this is customizable, including the number of days displayed, as well as which times and which days of the week are shown. For those of us working with multiple timezones, you can check the “Use timezones” box, and everyone can work in their own local time.
Once the grid is set up to your liking, you simply click on times that you would like to schedule the event, type in a name for the event in the field designated for that purpose, and click “Create Event.” Write down or copy the code displayed on the next page, and then you’ll be given a link that you can send to people you want to attend. They can then mark which of the times you’ve selected is good for them. You can opt to be notified of responses by email, or just periodically visit the public link provided to see what time invitees are choosing.
You can also edit the event using another customized URL provided by the site. And, if you’re feeling really fancy, When is Good offers the ability to sync your event with an iCal file or URL. Not a bad list of features for a free service that requires no sign-up or sharing of personal information.
Obviously, this service is better for smaller events, since it could quickly become unwieldy with a long list of invitees, but there’s not limit to the type of event to which it could apply. A business meeting, a meeting with clients, teleconference, sales call, promotional event, tweetup or party would all benefit from When is Good’s help, and best of all, if your invitees can use email and a browser, they can use this app.
Have any good tips for scheduling meetings? Share them in the comments!