Time zones managing in Demodesk
Time zones are relevant in three main features of Demodesk: when scheduling a meeting (incl. integration with your email provider), when creating Meeting Types and when receiving inbound demos through booking pages.
The goal of this article is to show how you can manage and set different time zones in your Demodesk account; how to best leverage the integration of your calendars when scheduling with customers outside your time zone and to give you a bit of a general overview of time zones.
1. How to set your own time zone
The first time you create your account, you will be asked to set the local time to your personal and company settings. This information will reflect on the default time zone when creating Meeting Types and scheduling meetings. If you wish to change that, you can access your account setting via the same link, select your preferred new time zone and click Save.
2. Timezones in the virtual screen
When you prepare your Playbook, you might want to add your booking link to directly let your customer book a follow-up meeting. You can simply add your link as a website, but if you know that your customer sits in a different time zone, it is helpful to adjust the time zone of your booking link to it.
Check out this article to learn how to generate custom booking links, a booking link can look like the following:
The query parameter ?time_zone=Europe/Berlin determines the time zone of your booking page, make sure to adjust the time zone according to the correct name.
3. Customise timezone for a certain Meeting Type
Once you have set your personal and company profiles’ time zone, your Meeting Type will automatically be synced to that time zone. When setting a new time zone, only your future new Meeting Types will automatically take that new time zone. The ones previously created will always refer to the old one. One way to adjust the new time zone in the previously created Meeting Types as well is by accessing the advanced availability settings and change the time zone at the bottom of the window.
If you use Tokens in your Invites, they will automatically refer to the time zone that is selected when booking a meeting. Therefore, they will automatically take the time that you see when scheduling out of the Demodesk calendar view. When your guests have different time zone as yours, it is recommended to use tokens with the explicit time zones, such as 'Meeting time'. This way, your guests will receive the invites with the time associated with their specific time zones, and no confusion will arise.
4. How to schedule with customers that sit in different time zones
When scheduling a meeting out of Demodesk, the default time zone will be the one previously set in your selected Meeting Type. You can always decide to change it by selecting the preferred time zone from the drop-down menu. We recommend changing it to your customer's timezone when booking a meeting on the dashboard. This way, you will be able to see yours or your team members' availability according to your guest time zone. Moreover, the information will be correctly stored in the tokens from your guests' perspective.
The integration between Demodesk and your connected email provider guarantees the perfect synchronisation of your meeting times between you and your guests. No matter where you create a meeting, and what time zone your guest is sitting in, everyone will see it in their own time zone. Keep in mind that in your meeting dashboard, the meetings will be shown according to your computer time zone.
5. When customers book you through a booking page
For your inbound bookings, there is nothing to worry about. Your booking page will automatically open to your guests the available slots according to their local machine time zone. Therefore, if you sit in Berlin (UTC+2) and you wish to be available only between 4 PM to 6 PM, your guests in New York (UTC-5), they will only see available slots between 10 AM to 12 AM. If your prospects have a firewall enabled that prevents their location to be detected, the booking page will be displayed for London as default. However, they can easily select their preferred timezone from the drop-down menu.
Best practices when using tokens in this case are to set the one without the timezone. This way, when your clients will receive the confirmation email, they will see it with the times associated with their time zone.
6. Time zones in short
Local time is based on the combination of your time zone and Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). The latter is not a time zone and is commonly referred to as International Time, or Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Greenwich England is, on the other hand, a time zone. It is, by definition, in the middle of time zone 0, the prime meridian. UTC time is the local time at Greenwich England. Time in other locations will be the UTC time hour plus or minus the local time zone. Daylight savings time (DST) is used in the summer months in some regions. DST is 1 hour ahead of standard time. There is no consistency between regions as to when DST takes effect, or reverts back to standard (real) time.
7. Summer / Winter time change
When you schedule a meeting in the wintertime, but you presently are in the summertime; then that meeting time will be automatically set accordingly in the right UTC. In other words, the change will happen automatically in your calendar from Berlin time zone UTC+2 to UTC+1. Finally, also the information stored in the tokens will be automatically updated.