One API to Build Your Automotive Service Scheduling Software

See why developers are turning to APIs to build powerful automotive service scheduling software into their applications.

Andrew Slate | September 7, 2021

Automotive services professionals rely on your application to keep their customers safe with repairs—fixing everything from cracked windshields to leaking transmission fluid to punctured tires. To keep their businesses running smoothly, however, your users need intuitive service scheduling software to take care of appointment scheduling—the critical, day-to-day functionality that keeps the business running. 

Let’s take a look at how integrating service scheduling software into your app can increase your users’ number of bookings while improving engagement and retention. 

Want a PDF of this article?

Share it with a friend or save it for later reading.

The Risk of Building Scheduling Software Yourself

You might’ve already researched building automotive service scheduling software from scratch. If you have, you would’ve discovered that it takes tens of thousands of hours for a talented team of senior engineers to scope the project, test it, build a POC, pursue the security certificates, push the POC live, and maintain the integration(s). Here are just a few technical roadblocks that you’d also need to consider:

  • Calendar Connectivity – Ensuring secure authentication for real-time bi-directional sync for every calendar provider in the world; automatically identifying primary calendars for booking, and incorporating different defaults for each provider.
  • Recurring Events – Complex protocols differ from provider to provider; navigating one-off changes and timezone transitions.
  • Availability Logic – Verifying that the pre-fetching and caching availability of participants is resilient to downtime and latency spikes while using provider webhooks and event streams to keep caches up-to-date.
  • Time Zone Support – Deducting time zone information given a complex array of data from the provider and normalizing for timezones across hemispheres.
  • Event Reminders – Accounting for the many common complexities of scheduling; everything from language consistency to ensuring the guest is notified if the meeting has been canceled (even if they haven’t already declined).
  • Building Scheduling UI –  Identifying all the edge cases your users may run into and making sure each workflow is intuitively designed.
  • Race Conditions – Implementing instant synchronization so that users don’t get double-booked when two people try to book the same slot simultaneously. At the same time, making sure that the solution doesn’t impact sync speed. 

Use Nylas to Increase User Engagement and Retention

Instead of building scheduling features from scratch, many developers are turning to productivity infrastructure platforms such as Nylas to offer powerful scheduling functionality without derailing their product roadmap. The Nylas Calendar API not only integrates with every calendar provider in the world, but it provides a myriad of robust scheduling features that will help you increase user engagement and retention. 

Reduce Service Appointment No-shows with Automated Text Reminders

One of the simplest but most effective features of successful automotive service scheduling software apps is text reminders. By leveraging appointment reminders, your users can reduce no-show appointments by more than 80%. This drastic improvement is made possible by the Nylas Events Endpoint, which makes enabling omnichannel reminders as simple as a single API request. The endpoint lets you seamlessly create events and omnichannel reminders (such as SMS alerts for upcoming meetings), making automated text reminders a native feature within your app. 

Virtual Calendars Keeps Your Users’ Service Bays Full

Your users’ automotive service businesses have multiple service bays (or spaces for repairs and other services) that they must track to ensure each technician is maximizing resources and effectively using their time. However, manually tracking, scheduling, and double-checking each technician’s schedule is a huge headache and can be error-prone. Nylas Virtual Calendars are ideal for your user’s automotive business, as they help users schedule events for people or objects that aren’t associated with a personal calendar account (like a service bay, for example), allowing you to provide full scheduling functionality to your users without requiring them to connect with a third-party service provider. Managing schedules for each service bay is now worry-free—Virtual Calendars automate the process of managing their availability. Let’s take a look at how you can set this up yourself:

curl --location --request POST 'https://api.nylas.com/calendars' \
--header 'Authorization: Bearer ACCESS_TOKEN' \
--data-raw '{
       "name":"Service Bay 1",
       "description":"Appointments for Technician Grace” ,
       "location":"Long Island City, NY",
       "timezone":"Long Island City, NY"
}'

Running this command will create a calendar object that looks like this:

{
   "account_id": "dc41c2a1ce6840deba3cd41468fb75",
   "description": "Appointments for Technician Grace”,
   "id": "ac1046f1dd1746d6a979b53c973c56",
   "is_primary": null,
   "location": "Long Island City, NY",
   "name": "Service Bay 1",
   "object": "calendar",
   "read_only": false,
   "timezone": "New York, NY"
}

While the Nylas Calendar API provides features like Virtual Calendars, which help your users keep on top of their auto repair shop schedule, many automotive software companies also use the Nylas Scheduler to let their customers schedule appointments directly through their online portal.

Takeaways

Service scheduling software is the backbone that powers your users’ automotive service businesses. Integrating your software with the Nylas API provides your users with the tools they need to schedule appointments within your platform. Learn how you can keep your app competitive and rapidly deploy powerful service scheduling software by trying our API for free today. Or, schedule time to speak to a platform specialist now.

Andrew Slate

Andrew is a Product Marketing Specialist at Nylas who covers topics ranging from productivity APIs to data analytics. He's passionate about digital and film photography, camping, and backpacking.