Block Bookings: What is it and how can it help with fill rates

This article will explain what the block bookings feature is and how this can support your fill rates and booking processes

What are block bookings?

‘Block bookings’ refers to the practice of booking locum shifts for a specified period in advance, such as for a week or a month. Within Patchwork, block bookings allow users to create a set of shifts over a defined time period where you would ideally like one person to fill the group of shifts. The feature may be used when sourcing a long-term locum from your pool of bank-only workers, or when sending shifts out to an agency to secure a single worker.

Creating blocks of shifts will reduce the admin task from rota coordinators, temp staffing teams and workers, and provides many benefits to both the organisation and workers. 

Who can use this feature?

All organisations, except those that have opted out. If you can't see "Blocks" on the navigation menu, then your organisation has opted out of using this feature.

All users will be able to:

  • See the new blocks menu item
  • Explore the block options
  • Create and save a block

Only users with appropriate permissions but be able to publish blocks. In order for workers to see or be assigned to a block, the block must be published. On the day of launch, all Admin accounts will have the publish blocks permission enabled. Other Hub users will need to have the feature toggle turned on for their account by their local temporary staffing team on a case-by-case basis. This allows temporary staffing teams to have greater control over the official rollout within their organisations.

Spotlight on: block bookings use case

Where there is a vacancy for an upcoming medical rotation, and you would like to source the line of work with a single clinician to fill your rota, consider using block bookings. Simply create a block of shifts defining the worker pattern and publish this within the Hub for workers to view on the Patchwork app. Eligible workers will be able to apply for the block of shifts with a single click. Consider using the instant booking feature to further increase shift fill rates. Organisations that utilise instant booking can hope to see an increase of 17% in shift fill rates, as well as a 10% reduction in shifts needing to be escalated when the feature is utilised in conjunction with longer shift lead times.