Hawkes Walks Online Customer Booking System

Case Study

Hawkes Walks - Online Customer Booking System



Company Details

Hawkes Walks was established in 2011 and has been walking your dogs or feeding your cats ever since

Hawkes Walks Logo


Tracy spent her weekends messaging her clients in order to populate her paper based diary. She then had to organise her employees to ensure all customer bookings were fulfilled.

Hawkes Walks decided to improve this process using an online booking solution. Tracy wanted the ability for customers to add their own bookings on to a system, and then the ability to assign the bookings to her staff.

The Plan

Given that the existing website was very outdated, it made sense to complete a full website refresh while designing the booking system. The majority of the site was running code that could pose a security risk and would create a lot of challenges ahead.

Tracy gave very specific instructions that the new site must be simple to navigate. Customers had commented that her existing site was simple and they were able to find the information they wanted easily - this was our key design factor.

With many customers and employees, there needed to be varying levels of access when logging in, to ensure the security of data.

The Design

Having confirmed that customers and employees varied from ages 18 - 60+, the style had to follow the branding of Hawkes Walks but be designed to suit all age groups.

Knowing that the majority of the users will be on a mobile device, the system needed to be responsive for all screen sizes. It also meant that the flow of the website needed to be easy to navigate by the user. Each section needs to be fully function and user friendly on all screen sizes.

Customer/Employee Portal

To keep everything simple and tied together, it was designed so that customers and employees access the system in the same way. All relevant functions such as "forgot password" were added to allow self-service preventing the need for admins to intervene.

It is not possible to create an account on the system without being invited by an admin. This is to ensure Hawkes Walks are able to provide the services you require and to meet your pet for a consultation before any bookings can be made. Once invited, a registration invite is sent to the customer providing a unique link to setup their account. Once they've added their initial details and created a password, they are then expected to agree to the terms and conditions before being allowed to access any features within the portal. All information is securely stored and only accessible to admins but can be updated by the customer at any point.

Once a customer is invited and the terms and conditions agreed to, they are given full access to the portal where they can add in their pets and start adding bookings.

An employee is added on to the system in the same way, a registration invite must be sent from an admin. Certain flags are automatically applied to the employees preventing the need to accept any terms and conditions, as well as removing irrelevant features in the portal.

Hawkes Walks Customer Portal

Each customer is assigned a dedicated employee, when the customer adds a booking it is automatically assigned to the employee but can be changed by admins if necessary.

Online Booking Calendar

Since Hawkes Walks work on weekdays, the calendar only needed to display Monday to Friday. Each customer should be able to view their own bookings and add directly to the calendar. A bespoke calendar was created to ensure it suited the requirements.

Hawkes Walks Online Booking Calendar

The calendar is designed so that customers can add bookings as far in advance as they wish, even setting a reoccuring booking for a set period of time/forever. It is also designed to ensure the cancellation policy is adhered to, preventing users from cancelling last minute without authorisation of an admin. However, all future appointments can be cancelled/amended or certain dates excluded from a reoccuring event directly by the customer. To keep things simple, this can all be done with just a few clicks!

From an employee perspective, the view is the same except it displays all the bookings assigned to them allowing them to organise their day. Clicking on any booking provides more details and if they have the relevant permissions, the options to amend it. Employees are also able to book their annual leave on the calendar which is then displayed to those with relevant permissions making it easy to ensure bookings are covered by other staff.

Those with the relevant permissions have the ability to view calendars other than their own. New bookings can be added for the customer or if necessary a booking can be cancelled ignoring the cancellation policy restrictions.


At the end of each month, Hawkes Walks was sending out paper based invoices after adding up the number of bookings for each customer. Now all the data is stored in a custom designed database, this is fully automated and at the end of every month the customer receives an emailed invoice based on the information in the calendar. All relevant discounts are automatically applied if the customer has more than 1 pet walked at a time. There is no need for any manual tasks which are prone to user errors and has become a huge time saver every month.

Within the portal is a section accessible only to admins, displaying the value of each invoice and the monthly totals helping them to manage their bookkeeping.

Every day, relevant admins receive a notification of any pet gotcha anniversaries or birthdays allowing them to prepare an extra special treat or a big shout-out on their socials.

That isn't all, there is also a gentle reminder sent a few days before an invoice is generated warning users the invoice is coming and to encourage prompt payment helping ensure staff are paid on time. These reminders and invoices are only sent to users with a booking for that month.

All email templates were styled to match that on the website and are sent from the Hawkes Walks domain.

What Next?

This was a big step in automation for Hawkes Walks. The majority of the business can now be run directly from the portal. The feedback from customers has been very positive and Tracy is back to enjoying her weekends again.

There is scope to add further automation in future, such as adding in a payment gateway and/or direct debit system as well as integrating with Xero to add invoices in automatically.

If you are interested in having your own system designed, we offer a free discovery call to get things started.

Book a Discovery Call