U.S. Air Force uses Waitwhile to run its appointment scheduling process
U.S. Air Force
The U.S. Air Force has more than 689,000 personnel. Airmen work to support all aspects of airpower, which includes five core missions: air superiority; global strike; rapid global mobility; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; and command and control. Airpower also requires people and resources dedicated to unit readiness, base infrastructure and talent management.
With 10,000 U.S. Air Force personnel stationed at the Royal Air Force base in Lakenheath, UK, Captain Kayce Slayton was seeing long wait times and frustration from customers who were looking to use the base’s services. Customers such as military contractors, local contractors, dependents, and retirees who lived on the base and needed to get an ID, registration, or schedule a career counseling appointment were experiencing waits of up to 45 minutes.
COI leadership recognized that communicating with interested parties throughout surgical care could alleviate confusion, stress, and worry. The team began looking for tools that would make the communication process easier for both the medical staff and loved ones alike. They found Waitwhile and began working to build the optimal system for their needs.
Captain Kayce Slayton heard that other colleagues had been using Waitwhile to manage lines and appointments. She decided to give it a try and was delighted by how easy it was to implement and use. Personnel as young as 18 with little technical experience, were able to grasp it and train other staff quickly. And customers of all ages including retirees, who were introduced to the app on the customer side, were able to “get in line” using their phones without any trouble.
Instead of having to stand in a physical line and not knowing how long it would take, customers could now join using their smart device and do anything they wanted while waiting. Waitwhile’s 2-way messaging capabilities were also a big help.
“When Waitwhile came on board, we could blast messages to personnel and customers, and were able to do mass rescheduling and customer communication if necessary,” said Captain Slayton.
Let customers get in line virtually and wait from anywhere.
Allow guests to book appointments and centrally manage calendars.
Keep an open line of communication and notify customers when it’s their turn.
Optimize resource and staffing allocation ahead of peak hours.
The staff at Lakenheath base were able to see results within 6 weeks after implementing Waitwhile. Both customers and staff were able to switch seamlessly to using the tool and much of the frustration has been eliminated. Customers love being able to easily join the line, see wait times, and know when their turn is coming up. Instead of wasting their time waiting, they can now run errands or go for a walk.
The staff, on the other hand, love being able to let people know if something is down and easily reschedule guest appointments. The 2-way messaging feature has saved them from having to communicate via email or deal with upset customers. Captain Slayton and her staff can now analyze wait times and optimize operations based on learnings such as which days/times are busiest and which services are most popular or take longer.
The team loves “the opportunity to text with people and also the ability to track the time each task takes,” said Captain Slatyon. “If we’re not meeting the appointment time we can go back and see what’s the issue to become more efficient.”
Since its implementation on the base, Waitwhile is being used by roughly a thousand customers a month and the USAF RAF Lakenheath team is using in-platform analytics to consistently improve operations and make things smoother for the people who live and work there.
“I love the opportunity to text with people and also the ability to track the time each task takes.”
Captain, U.S. Air Force