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public calendar/resources for trade shows



we are currently exploring using salesforce calendaring to track and book our sales teams calendars while attending a trade show.  it looks like the standard fucntionality for a public calendar won't work since we can add an event to both the public calendar but also tie it to that sales rep as well so they can see their individual prospect meetings but also their scheduled booth time.


a possible workaround was to create a "resource" for the trade show, so a resource called "New England Expo" which allows us to then keep track of the scheduling for the event overall as well as keep each rep's individual events tied to their own calendars.  however, the problem with this is that we can double-book the resource, because it's entirely likely that we'll have different reps meeting with different prospects at the same time or some people at the booth while other people are meeting with prospects that we'd like to keep as separate events on the calendar. 


is there a different way for us to try to capture this within salesforce, can we at least let salesforce double book a resource or is there some other way that might help us better keep track of these trade show schedules?


thank you very much for your help.

Andy BoettcherAndy Boettcher

In my experience - I haven't found a good "out of the box" solution for this (hmmm, do I smell an AppExchange opportunity?)


How do you currently track "Trade Shows" and the like in your Organization?  Thinking verbosely here - if you were to say track these group events in a Custom Object that had Activities enabled, and in the Sales Rep's event you could set the "Related To" (or "What") to that Custom Object.


That method would give you a quick non-code way to accomplish what you're looking to do.  Your Sales Reps would have their appointments - and you would be able to see all appointments related to "July's Trade Show".  Honestly you could even tie them to a Campaign if you really wanted to...


Thoughts?  Care to expand on the topic?  Let me know.






from an activities perspective we just track them on the contact/lead level to create the history of the meeting, and associate the activity with the campaign. 


The reason we're trying to use calendars for this is because of how we utilize our inside sales teams to schedule prospect meetings with the reps we'll have out at the trade show.


Right now we just use microsoft project so we can visually map out what times reps are scheduled to be at the booth, what times their meetings with prospects are, etc.  The challenge is that this file is maintained by the marketing team so we're constantly asking them for an updated file to ensure the prospect meetings aren't being double booked.  By moving this to the salesforce calendar, we have a way for all of our people to see white times are available and schedule appropriately while minimizing the risk that two ships pass in the night and somebody gets double booked.


After I posted this I played around with the calendars a little more, and figured out how to get our users attached to a public calendar (from my first pass the name of the calendar was taking up the user slot so it didn't look like I could associate it to a user) but we can just add the user as in invitee to the event so it puts it on their personal calendars and gives us all a centralized place to track what times are still available to schedule additional meetings for.  I think the public calendar will do for us what we need it to do, we'll just have to work out some specifics on nomenclature so the users all stay on the same page.



Thank you very much for the thoughts.

Andy BoettcherAndy Boettcher

Excellent news!  I'm very happy that you found a way to make this work for your organization.  Good luck with the finishing touches - if I can be of any help to you along the way, don't hesitate to ask.