News, Tips, Help & Advice

Announcements from Total Drive, news about app features, tips and advice from instructors and a round-up of what’s going on in the industry.

Cancellations? ‘Grab the Gap’

We all make bookings, whether it’s for a holiday, a music gig, a restaurant or a traditional appointment like a hair salon, dentist or spa.

Cancellations in any appointment-based industry happen. Driving instructors, sadly, are no exception. Whether it’s a one-off occurrence, a repeat offender, or sometimes a flurry of cancellations, these can plague an instructor.

For many instructors, a cancellation is lost ‘potential’ income, and a disruption to the diary. Even if the pupil has pre-paid and given sufficient notice, you still have a decision to make; do I fill the diary slot, or do I take a breather? With the current waiting list backlog, and the clammer of pupils wanting to learn to drive, filling the diary slot, currently, is a no brainer.

But what is the most time-efficient process for filling a diary gap?

A group text message? Individual WhatsApp messages? Facebook announcement? With a mobile phone at your disposal, take your pick!

Whichever method you choose, it is yet another time-consuming admin task. Firstly, you need to alert your pupils, then wait for a response. Secondly, send a follow-up message stating that the diary slot has been taken, and then finally, apologise to any pupils that didn’t respond quickly enough, informing them the diary gap has now been filled.

Would you like a new method? One that is fast, hassle-free, simple and easy to book?

A method that alerts your pupils to any new lesson availability, and allows them to book on a first come, first served basis? A method that once the lesson space has been booked, it cannot be booked by another person? A method which, to coin a phrase, really does allow your pupils to ‘Grab the Gap’!

Lesson Gaps enables you to set a date, time, and lesson duration – the key details for a pupil to make an informed decision whether they can or can’t ‘Grab the Gap’. You can even add lesson location, specifying a town, city or postcode, which is of great benefit if your pupils are spread out, saving you unnecessary travelling time.

Creating the Lesson Gap takes no more than ten seconds! After which, you will receive just one alert – the name of the pupil that has booked the gap. Easily filled cancellations, peace of mind that all the admin is done for you – what’s not to like?

This time-saving tool is an innovative feature from Total Drive, the driving instructor app and software providers. Owner of Total Drive, Tom Wotton said: “We’re always striving to enhance and innovate the app, so it’s important to us that we listen to the feedback of instructors, and ensure that the app’s features evolve with the needs of instructors.”

“We want to modernise the industry, and make life for a driving instructor easier. Instructors work very long hours, so by reducing their admin time, and filling cancellation slots, this gives them the opportunity to take on more pupils, or to enjoy more downtime.”

Diane Hall from L of a way 2 Pass, is a driving instructor and therapist, and specialises in driving anxiety and test nerves. An avid advocate of Total Drive, she says: ‘due to the type of clients that I specialise in, I perhaps experience more cancellations than most instructors. Prior to Lesson Gaps, when I had a cancellation, I would spend a fair bit of time going through my pupils to decide who may be available for a lesson, and whether I’d have time to get to them, do the lesson, and have time to get to my next pupil.

I’d then text perhaps 3 or 4 pupils, wait for one of them to reply, and then have to text the others to say that the gap had now been taken. More often than not, it was more hassle than it was worth, so I’d end up grabbing a coffee instead. Lesson Gaps has proved invaluable; when Tom said it would take about ten seconds, I thought he was joking! It is so simple to use, I simply enter the lesson criteria and then wait for a notification. It helps me to keep a full diary and pupils love it.

So, the next time you receive a cancellation, and you’re considering the predicament of what’s the best way to fill the diary slot, consider using Lesson Gaps. A cancellation gives you the option to double or quit. To double your income (if the cancellation was pre-paid) or quit a lesson and indulge yourself with that well-earned Cappuccino!