“EDUCATORS TURN TO NEW APPLICATIONS LIKE TIMEBRIDGE TO BRING STUDENTS AND COLLEAGUES TOGETHER
TimeBridge's Personal Scheduling Assistant Being Used by Educators Around the World to Increase Collaboration and Communication
San Francisco, Calif., August 04, 2008 —Educators at a variety of schools and universities are increasingly turning to Web 2.0 technology to help them be more efficient and fill the gaps left by traditional desktop applications. For teachers with tight schedules and small budgets, these web tools are popular due to their ease-of-use and because they are often inexpensive or even free. Educators have the tricky job of coordinating their schedules with many groups of people, including students, fellow colleagues, parents and other groups and organizations. TimeBridge has proven to be a valuable tool in aiding collaboration and making it simple for people to share availability and easily schedule times to meet, instead of going through the painful and tedious process of exchanging multiple emails and phone calls.
TimeBridge's Personal Scheduling Assistant, which launched in December 2007, now counts more than 70,000 users and was recently named a "Cool Vendor" by Gartner Research. TimeBridge offers a new, efficient way to schedule meetings with large groups or individuals across time zones, calendaring systems and fully integrates with Outlook and Google calendars, with Apple iCal integration coming soon.
TimeBridge Bringing Teachers All Over the World Together
Vicki Davis is a teacher at Westwood Schools in Camilla, Georgia, where she teaches 8th-12th graders. Along with fellow educator Julie Lindsay in Qatar, Vicki co-founded the Horizon Project which brings together students from classrooms across the world in a collaborative environment to research, discuss and envision the education and society of the future. One of the main challenges for Davis and her colleagues is finding times to plan together to keep the project moving forward. With people located from Georgia to Bangladesh to Australia and across many other time zones, emails would go back-and-forth for days before a time could be finalized, with the original proposed time often going by before it could be confirmed.
Davis and the Horizon Project turned to TimeBridge to solve the scheduling headache that was hampering their ability to collaborate. TimeBridge's advanced time zone support and meeting time polling feature streamlined the scheduling process and has eliminated the inefficiencies and wasted time previously associated with getting everyone together.
"TimeBridge just works," says Davis. "It's great because it works across all time zones so everybody can see the proposed times within their own schedule and respond accordingly. It now takes at most 24 hours to schedule a meeting that used to take six or seven days—it was a nightmare. These projects would really not be possible without TimeBridge because we would not be able to get together to plan and strategize."
"Teacher's schedules are often very complicated," continues Davis. "We all have tiny windows of time before, between and after classes so our availability is really limited. Using TimeBridge to schedule our meetings allows all of us to make the most of our time."
Facilitating New Relationships between Faculty and Students
Dustin Brentlinger is the Dean of Students at Heidelberg College in Ohio. He is in charge of student discipline and academic counseling so a large part of his job is meeting with students to discuss their academic and disciplinary standing.
Meeting with students, especially those with disciplinary issues, can often be challenging to coordinate. Students often ignored or lagged in responding to phone calls from Brentlinger and his office assistant, so he began sending them TimeBridge invites offering five times for the student to pick from. TimeBridge's strong call to action has yielded quick responses from students: "When they're in trouble, they try to avoid you," says Brentlinger. "I've been able to meet with students who I could never get to come see me before."
For students requesting meetings with Brentlinger, TimeBridge has proven invaluable as well.
"Students would much rather communicate via email or some other digital means than receiving a phone call to schedule a meeting," Brentlinger continued. "So now when I receive an email from a student asking to meet with me, I simply respond with a TimeBridge invite offering a few times for them to pick from. It gets the meeting scheduled much more quickly and everyone is more comfortable with the process. It's allowed me to strengthen and build new relationships with students."
Dean Brentlinger has also taken his use of TimeBridge to the next level by posting his availability link in his Facebook profile so students who want to meet with him can easily access his calendar and request a meeting. "Hopefully this will make me much more accessible," he says.
TimeBridge has created the first Personal Scheduling Assistant to give busy professionals a faster, more efficient way to schedule their time. TimeBridge's one-step scheduling is the most efficient way to schedule meetings with large groups or individuals across time zones, calendaring systems and companies. TimeBridge allows users to easily schedule meetings, share their availability with others, and connect directly with calendars including Outlook and Google Calendar. While online calendars help users track their time, TimeBridge facilitates the social, and often complex process of getting busy people together—in person, on the phone or online. TimeBridge is backed by blue-chip venture capital firms Mayfield Fund and Norwest Venture Partners. For more information, go to www.timebridge.com.”