Thompson Rivers University

A new face—and interface—in room booking

August 31, 2018

Shilpee Sharma is a new member of the RO Systems team at TRU.

When a scheduling assistant position opened up in RO Systems, Shilpee Sharma wasn’t sure exactly how her job skills would apply, but her experiences working in Egypt, Jamaica, Nova Scotia and Alberta taught her she is up for any challenge. After an initial auxiliary position at Accessibility Services—her first time in a university setting—she knew she wanted to explore more of TRU.

Her wish came true in more ways than one. As the scheduling assistant responsible for room bookings, Sharma got her feet wet learning new booking software, which launched this summer in the Infosilem Enterprise system. She also got a crash course in the existing software in Banner, as every booking needs to be entered in both systems until they are fully transitioned in mid-semester.

“Enterprise is new, and I didn’t realize until the second week that I was the person trying it out,” she said. “It’s challenging but will definitely be a big step up.”

Alongside learning software that’s new to her and new to TRU, Sharma has been getting familiar with more of campus—doing a walk-through of many of the classrooms, labs and other spaces that are available for the TRU community to book.

“Someone requested a room with a sink! So I went and checked it out.”

Users making room booking requests won’t notice many changes, but the new software adds automation to streamline the process for her, meaning better service for users.

“Instead of coming as an email to us, the request will go straight into Enterprise and show as a notification. Once it’s processed at my end, an email will automatically go out to the requester,” If there are any changes to the request, an email will go out automatically as well.

In addition to speeding up the current room booking process, new self-serve options will make the service even more user-friendly for students. In a pilot project starting in September, students in the Bachelor of Social Work will be able to use the software to see availability and book interview rooms themselves. The plan is to roll out similar self-booking options for TRU’s computer labs.

“The goal is to make the system user-friendly and self-sufficient,” she said, looking forward to October when she should be able to switch entirely into Enterprise. “There’s lots for me to learn, it’s never going to be boring.”