• Micah Kidd

Please submit a ticket today: How a Blocking Feature Would Help VIPKid AND Teachers

The following post was written by Lynnae McCoy in the Hutong but perfectly sums up the thoughts of many. At the bottom you will find a template that you can use to submit a ticket.

Just adding my voice to the request for a blocking feature.

Why a blocking feature would be a good thing:

Currently, teachers are set up to make mistakes. The automated booking requests come in more than once a week for the same student and day. This makes teachers more vulnerable to making mistakes. We don’t just reject Apple once for a slot on New Year’s Day. We may have to reject her multiple times. This hurts teacher moral and can cause us to feel antagonistic toward the company.

A blocking feature would help us trust VIPKid more and increase teacher morale.

Every time teachers make a mistake, we either have to teach or cancel. When we cancel, we make

parents unhappy.

A blocking feature helps keep parents happy.

Every time we cancel a class, tickets are sent to apologize to parents or landblast VIPKid for not having a blocking feature.

A blocking feature saves time and money on ticket agents.

Too many cancellations due to mistakes results in contract termination.

A blocking feature reduces teacher turnover and therefore the need for teacher acquisition costs.

Teachers who can’t afford to cancel due to the fear of contract termination harm their relationships with family members, whom they do end up cancelling on. Everyone knows that a supportive family is necessary when we work these crazy hours.

A blocking feature helps keep a teacher’s support system strong…resulting in lower turnover, which reduces the need for teacher acquisition costs.

Teachers who are afraid of making mistakes due to a changing schedule may just schedule fewer classes. Rather than trying to remember whether this is a Tuesday I can work or a Tuesday I can’t work, I may choose not to work every Tuesday, so I can reject bookings whenever I see “Tuesday” on the booking request. If a teacher can confidently block of times during the month they can’t teach, they can confidently accept all booking requests that come in. Without confidence, some booking requests will expire, as teachers wait to accept them until they can check the calendar and then forget about the requests. And teachers may just not open their schedule as much.

A blocking request would help teacher productivity.

As long as there is not a blocking feature, teachers will continue to send tickets to request one.

A blocking feature will (again) save time and money in the ticket agent department.

It’s your turn, VIPKid. How would a blocking feature hurt VIPKid? There has to be a reason you’re not implementing it. We know it’s possible, from a technological standpoint, as you block off times we can’t teach from your side.

So what gives? Let’s work this out together.

Here’s a sample ticket that you can copy and paste. (Thanks Holly)

"Ticket category: Platform Features > Teacher Portal

Subject line: Please include a “block” feature for teaching schedules


I would like a feature that allows me to “block” certain times or dates on my teaching schedule, so that I don’t accidentally accept bookings at times that I cannot teach due to other obligations or vacations.

Here are some specific attributes that I would like to see in this feature: –On my scheduling page, the blocked time slots would appear in red, and a warning would appear if I clicked on it to open the time slot. This would prevent me from accidentally opening time slots at a later date. –When a parent views my teaching schedule, the blocked times would not be displayed at all. This would prevent parents from submitting a priority-booking request for these unavailable timeslots. –Automated priority-booking requests for the blocked times would be automatically declined. This would prevent me from accidentally accepting a booking for a time that I am unable to teach.

I think this change would be beneficial to all, because it would decrease the number of teacher cancellations and teacher no-shows. I think it would also reduce parent frustration, as it would reduce the number of rejected priority bookings. Finally, I believe it will improve teacher morale, because many teachers have been wishing for this feature for a long time, and it would help us feel more relaxed to have better control over our schedule. I appreciate your attention on this matter.




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