Timer on dashboard

I would like to have a timer. This will help me be on schedule with my next patient. Maybe under setting set a time for each call. Then a notifier at 5 mins before the end to try and wrap up.

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This would also help those of us who bill by time.

I like this…maybe at five minutes before the set time, a brief tune like a ringtone could play so the client would also be alerted to the shift toward closure of the session.

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I agree. It would be VERY helpful to have a timer on the screen so both parties can see when the session time is ending. It is somewhat helpful having the timer on the sidebar, but I think it would be more beneficial for client’s to be able to see that as well. And having a notification sound to alert when 5-mins remains would be amazing. All too often client’s will try to keep talking and ignore the time and I feel it is unprofessional to hang up on the client, but am feeling like there are not many other options at this point.

Thank you for the context you added, knowing specifics like this about how it would be useful really help us decide how to go about it when we consider new ideas. So for you, part of why this would be helpful is that you want the client to see how much time is left without you having to interrupt the session to tell them, right?

I’ve made a note of this suggestion for our engineers to consider, I see why it’s a really good idea.

Hey Adam!

Yes–for me, it would be beneficial to have a mutual timer that both of us can see. When I was working in an office setting, it was easy enough to stand up and guide someone towards the door as a means of hinting the session is over with. Now that I am working remotely, I can’t seem to find a polite and professional way to indicate the session is over. I try to be mindful of the time, but it isn’t always that easy and even if I do remind clients that the session is ending, they seem to still go on talking. Having a timer would eliminate any of the guesswork and would be blatantly obvious that the 45-mins is up.

I have notifications on my Google Calendar that makes a sound, but often it is hard to hear when there is someone talking. I have also tried setting timers on my phone, but it is not easy to remember to do that 8-9 times a day. For me, having that 15-mins in between sessions makes the world of a difference, as I tend to feel more burnout if I don’t get to end the session on time. So even a clock in general on both screens would be helpful (if a timer is not) because it would at least be on the screen we are both looking at and hard to ignore.

Hope this helps!
-Angie

As both a marriage and family therapist and a product manager at Doxy.me, this is an interesting thread. I can fully appreciate the time issue when it comes to sessions and how easy it is to have the end of the session creep up on both the therapist and the client. Having a 5 minute warning could certainly help both parties shift the discussion in a way that helps wrap up the session well. I also know that some clients have a hard time being respectful of the boundary. And as a therapist it’s not always easy to hold the boundary without coming across insensitive, especially if the client is sharing sensitive, personal information still.

It seems there are two problems to solve here:

  1. Losing track of time and having the end of session sneak up on you.
  2. Clients who are not mindful or respectful of the time and keep talking despite the session being over.

Sadly, I’m not sure that a clock or a timer will do anything to solve the second problem. It’s probably just a matter of having something to say in those moments - “I wish we could keep talking but I really need to get ready for my next client. I’ll make a note of what you are sharing and we can follow up on it next week.” If that doesn’t work, it should probably be a therapeutic issue that gets discussed in session (maybe they struggle respecting boundaries of others too).

As for the first problem, the timer is an interesting idea. It seems the goal would be to have it operate without any effort from the provider. Set it up in Settings and then watch it work. Show it to both parties. Seems simple, until I start thinking of other factors:

  • What happens if the client is late to the session? Then the timer will be off.
  • What about if the call drops due to the client having poor cell phone connection? Then the timer would restart and not be accurate.

These points don’t mean it shouldn’t be a feature, but it helps us think through these things and find solutions that will work and not cause unintended problems. After all, one of the best things about doxy.me is its simplicity.

Let’s keep discussing this one and see if we can come up with the best way to solve one or both of these problems.