Appointment keeper

Manage your business appointments and much more with this full-featured suite.

Business Appointment Manager (BAM) from Business Management Systems is a multiuser, network-capable business software and database suite that bundles scheduling, billing, customer contact, and a variety of reporting tools. The program can help coordinate appointments and other important events and actions, everything from ordering supplies and reserving conference rooms to sales, client meetings, and purchasing, helping to reduce wasteful duplication and conflicts like double-booking. It also integrates billing, customer relations, and business-planning tools, all in one comprehensive, shared interface.

When you install BAM, you have the option of installing the full program, which includes SQL Server components, or just the client, depending on the target PC and network environment. We opted for a full installation, which was extensive but quick and well managed. BAM opens with an interactive quick start display with tabs for opening or starting a database as well as some excellent examples and a highly recommended Learn More tab with instructions and assistance. However, BAM is surprisingly easy to start with. We quickly created a new database using the program's wizard and proceeded to the main interface, where we entered our basic data. At first glance, BAM's stylish interface seems busy, though it's actually quite businesslike. The basic Windows file menu/navigation pane/main window layout is colorfully skinned with clearly labeled and configured controls, dialogs, icons, tabs, and tree views. Since BAM integrates an entire business suite, it does more than we can adequately describe, but every feature we tried functioned without a hitch. A couple of extras we commend are the Export to Excel button on the toolbar and the Outline tool on the List tab.

Business Appointment Manager is optimized for appointment-based businesses, but its scheduling, billing, and customer relations management features make it valuable to a wide range of users. Its attractive, efficient environment seems a pleasant place to spend the workday, too.

Editors' note: This is a review of the full version of Business Appointment Manager 2.0. The trial version is limited to 30 days.

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