'Consult' Timely's free consultation app, has been life-changing to the businesses that are using it! Finally, they've been able to get rid of the massive amounts of paper that they used to use for their forms and consultations.
Psssssssttt! This is quite a long help guide, get a cup of tea or coffee to keep you going! ☕Consult can only be downloaded on iOS devices and is not currently available on Android . However, if you don't have an iOS device (iPad or iPhone) you can still send Timely's standard consultations prior to your client's appointments from your Timely account on the Elevate or Innovate plans. Find out more here.
In this guide we'll cover how to:
- Download Consult.
- Creating and editing forms.
- Sync forms with your Timely account
- Using Consult with clients in person.
- Sending a consult prior to an appointment.
- Viewing client consultations in Timely
- Go to the App Store and look up 'Consult', or click here to download. Download Consult on your iOS Device (iPhone or iPad), once it has downloaded, sign in using your Timely log in details. If you are not a Timely customer, you can create a Consult account.
Creating and Editing forms
On the 'Start a Consultation' screen, tap the 'Create a form' button. This will take you to the Form Builder. You can also choose to edit an existing form, such as Dario's form, by clicking the three dots on any form and selecting 'edit'.
On an iPad: You will see a list of question types to the left and your 'in progress' forms to the right.
On an iPhone: The components are in a drawer at the bottom of the screen.
Tap on a question type to edit it, or drag them around to reorder your form.
The cog icon in the top right corner is where you can rename your form and give it a description. You can also share it with your business, or delete your form if you don’t need it anymore. At any stage you can click Preview to check what your completed form will look like.'Click' save to save your progress and exit back to your Library.
You have the option to choose which type of questions you ask in your consultation form, listed below are the types of questions you can ask:
Client Details: All forms will have a Client Detail block already added to the form. We need to capture your client’s name to correctly save your consultations so this block can’t be deleted. You can edit the Client Detail block to also capture Email, Phone and Date of Birth. If you have syncing back to Timely enabled, these details will be updated on your client’s Timely profile, or Timely will use this information to create a new client profile.
Yes/No: This question type will as a question and restrict your client's response to Yes or No. You can edit the question being asked, and set if the question is required.
Multichoice: This question allows you to ask a question with several options for answers. You can set the question and answers, and also define if the question should have a single answer, or if there should be the option to select multiple answers.
Short answer: The short answer question allows you to ask a question with a single line for a free text answer.
Long answer: If your question requires a larger text response, you can use the long answer question type. This allows will give a free text box that will continue to expand to give clients as much room as they need to give a response.
Date: If you need to ask your client about a date, you can use the date picker box. Clicking edit will allow you to set the question and select whether or not the question is required.
Paragraph/ Disclaimer: You can use the Paragraph component to add in information for your client that doesn’t require any answer, for example terms of service or details of a service to be provided.
Signature: Some consultation forms require your client’s signature. You can add a signature field that will allow your client to sign directly into consult using your devices touch screen. You can also add custom copy to your signature field. If you’re adding a legal disclaimer or terms and conditions please make sure that you seek your own legal advice.
Drawing: This component allows you to draw over top of an image in your consultation. You can set a standard image into your consultation template, or you can add an image during the consultation specific to your client. You can choose to upload an image from your device, use our document scanner, or even take a photo. This is really helpful when completing consultations where you want to show your client what products or services will be used on what parts of their body. When you use this question type in a consultation you'll be able to choose different colours and line thicknesses so that you can mark up your image exactly as you need.
Connecting Consult with Timely (iOS)
Share forms with business
Once you have made your custom consultations or forms, you can share it for use in your business.
From the ' edit' screen 'click' the cog and then click the grey toggle 'Share with business' which will turn it green.
Now, other staff from your business who log in to Consult will be able to see and use the templates that you share!
Timely Staff View
Timely Customers have access to a special staff view to make sure you have complete control over what consultations are being performed in your business. If anyone other than the Business Owner logs in their access will be restricted to only Templates that have been shared with them. This means you don’t need to worry about a member of your staff changing your template or accidentally deleting something important. If you want to allow another member of staff to create, edit or share a template the business owner will need to login to the device to access the form builder and sharing functionality.
Pictured below is the screen an employee will see when they open the Consult app if they don't have access to edit Consult templates.
Using Consult with your clients (in person)
Once you have made your custom consultations or forms, you can use them with your clients.
Starting a Consultation
To start a consultation, simply 'click' on the icon of the form you would like to use from your Library. The Consultation will load for either you or your client to fill in.
If you are on an Elevate or Innovate Timely plan you will be able to search your Timely contacts to pull down user details into your consultation form before you begin. Any updates to these answers will be synced back to the client record at the end of the consultation. If you’re speaking with a new client, you can select New Client and a new record will be made in Timely at the end of your consultation.
Once your consultation is finished, 'click' Complete to lock down your client's answers.
You can download a copy of your consultation as a PDF, or if you are a Timely Customer with Client Documents enabled you can sync directly back to the client record.
If you need to exit your consultation you can 'click' Cancel where you can either save your progress or delete the consultation. To restart your saved consultation just visit the Consultations tab.
The Consultations Tab
The Consultations Tab is where you’ll find all your in progress and completed consultations.
Consultations are sorted by status (In progress, Complete), and by 'type' to help you find what you’re looking for.
If you tap on an 'In progress' consultation you will re-enter the form and will be able to continue your consultation with your client. If you’d like to delete the consultation swipe the title of the consultation to the left then 'click' delete.
Completed consultations will be saved to your device. You can download a copy of your consultation as a PDF, or if you are a Timely Customer with Client Documents enabled you can sync directly back to the client record. Just 'click' on the consultation and 'click' share or sync. You can delete a completed consultation by swiping its title to the left and then selecting delete
Updates to the App
We’re always working to improve Consult and bring you great new features to make your Client experience perfect. Sometimes when we add a new feature the app will need to be updated in order to keep running correctly (big features can mean big changes in the way things work in the background!)
If this is the case we’ll send you a pop-up message in the app. You’ll need to update Consult in the app store before you can continue using it.
Starting a consultation from Timely
Timely Customers with access to Documents can also begin a consultation from within the Timely app. Just go to the customer’s profile, and scroll down to documents. Under Documents, tap on “Start consultation” Consult will automatically open and the Client’s details will be populated in the Consultation template that you select. When the Consultation is completed, it will sync back to the Client’s timely record.
Send consultations to a client prior to an appointment
Important information: Before sending a consultation, we recommend checking through your duplicate customers.
This guide here runs through how to do that: How to merge duplicate customers. We use your clients' SMS to log them in and connect them to their records. If you have multiple clients with the same SMS number we'll use the details that have the most recent booking made.
Consultations are sent as an ad hoc SMS message and use SMS credits from your monthly allowance.
- Firstly, we need to go to the client's profile that we want to send the consultation to. To do this either head to the Customers tab in Timely or click the Send consultation button in the customer sidebar of the calendar.
- If you are using the Customers tab, search for the client and click on their name on the list to open their record.
- Once you've found the client you want to send the consultation to, click the Documents tab on the client's profile.
- In the Documents tab, click the Send consultation button.
- Search for the consultation form that you want to send your client.
If you're unable to see your consultations here, check that you've shared them with your business. This guide runs through how to do that: How to Share a Consult Form with your Business. If you haven't shared or created your own consultations, you'll be able to send one of our industry-standard consultations.
- Once you've found the consultation you want to send, click Send. This message uses a credit from your monthly SMS allowance.
- After you've clicked Send, your client will receive an SMS message with a link for them to fill in the consultation.
- If you have a second consultation to send to the client, you can click Send another consultation, otherwise, click Done.
- Once you click Done, you'll be able to see the consultation that was sent to the client and whether they've filled it in or not.
How to view a submitted consultation
Before viewing a consultation, your client needs to have submitted the consultation. What this means is, you're not able to view the consultation while they're filling it in, only once they've submitted it.
- To view the consultation, head to the Customers tab in Timely and search for the client you've sent the consultation to.
- Once you've selected the client, click the Documents tab on the client's profile.
- In the Documents tab, you'll be able to see all of the sent consultations. If your client has filled in the consultation, you can click View. If the client hasn't yet filled in the consultation, the View button won't be there and instead, it will say 'This hasn't been filled in yet'.
When your client updates their details in a consultation form, the details get synced and updated in Timely.
Need more convincing? Check out these two case studies about a high tech beauty salon in New Zealand and a hair and beauty salon in the United Kingdom.