Scheduling Interviews Using Doodle
Scheduling is often one of the most important parts of filmmaking, and it's also one of the least sexy.
If you're a Director or DP who gets to work with talented producers, scheduling hopefully won't be something you deal with much.
When running productions direct to client and functioning as a Director/Producer, you better bet you'll be doing a lot of scheduling.
I run a production company called Valo Visuals, and we're currently starting production on a pretty big project for a local college. We're doing 7 videos on 7 programs they have at the school, and each video requires 3-4 people in it. That means we're doing 21-28 interviews over the course of 3 shoot days. Thankfully they're short interviews, but that's still a LOT of logistics to figure out.
To simplify the process, we used a tool called Doodle.com. There's a free version, or you pay like $50/year to get access to some bonus functionality. With Doodle I was able to basically make a spreadsheet of interview time-slots for two of our upcoming shoot days, which I sent to the department heads for the 7 school programs we'd be covering. They were able to take the link and forward it to the students they wanted interviewed, and those students were able to check off a time-slot that would for them on one of our given days. Doodle collects everyone's names and info, so if we have any changes come up we can get in contact with each interviewee separately.
When a participant opened the Doodle link they also received information about the content we'd be talking about, what to wear, and where to meet. This allows easy consistent dissemination of information to over 20 people in a short period of time.
Using Doodle has allowed us to schedule interviews with minimal man power and time dedicated to logistics. It's not the best tool for every job, but it can definitely be helpful for any situation where you have to coordinate availability with a large number of people.
What tools do you use for scheduling?