26 Feb 2021 World leisure: news, training & property
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Health Club Management
2016 issue 10

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Leisure Management - Call of duty


Call of duty

The way we communicate in our social lives has changed drastically over the past 10 years, but more often than not, how we communicate at work hasn’t. We take a look at what’s new in the world of staff communication software

Hugo Braam CEO Virtuagym


Hugo Braam

Virtuagym is an all-in-one fitness software system for health clubs, with tools to handle every aspect of a fitness business, from exercise and nutrition coaching, invoicing and payments to communication, scheduling and staff management.

The staff management module contains files on all staff members and their recent usage of the system, including personal information, clients they coach, products bought via Virtuagym and connected invoices. User roles and access privileges allow the operator to manage which features staff can use.

In the scheduling module, operators can handle staff planning and time management – setting up schedules for instructors, creating staff schedules to plan internal meetings and workshops. Couple this with class participant and occupancy tracking and you have a clear indicator of class and instructor popularity.

Tasks can be created for staff which show up in their online profile, and staff communication is supported via a private messaging system or private discussion groups in the mobile community, accessible through the mobile app. In fact, the mobile community is a key element in our toolset, enabling communication between staff and members too.

Bodymentors is a Dutch chain of premium personal training clubs. We helped them to significantly reduce time spent on staff management and scheduling, with the schedule module alone saving their team 40 hours a week.

We’re now expanding our mobile communication tools with WhatsApp-like chat functionality to make communication even more flexible, meaning management and staff can get in touch whenever, wherever.


Class popularity is trackable

John Coldicut CMO Planday


John Coldicut

Planday has helped fitness and leisure businesses around the world to reduce administration time – by up to 75 per cent – as well as saving on staffing costs and increasing employee engagement. Our online platform and app enable managers to create and share a constantly up-to-date employee schedule, manage HR processes and communicate with staff.

One of our most significant customers is one of the largest fitness chains in the Nordics: Fitness World, which has almost 5,000 employees across 150 centres. In fact, several Planday features were developed specifically with Fitness World, Barry’s Bootcamp and other Planday fitness customers in mind, making it a natural fit for businesses of any size in the fitness and leisure industry.

For example, Planday has the option of skill-based scheduling. Managers can recognise specific skills – like certified yoga instructor – and assign this to people in the system, meaning only employees with the relevant skills can claim certain shifts. In addition, our app allows employees to clock in from any device – but managers can control where they’re allowed to clock in from, which is especially helpful if staff members are running bootcamps or classes from remote locations.

When it comes to communication, Planday makes it easy to get everyone on the same page. Managers can send updates to all employees when they clock in, so everyone knows about any upcoming changes for that particular shift.

James Curry, GM of Tone Leisure, tells us the trust’s employees – and especially the younger staff – “absolutely love” Planday, because it allows them to check when they’re working or communicate with their colleagues whenever they want.


Planday reduces admin time

Ross McCaw Founder Our Leisure People


Ross McCaw

With 14 years in the leisure industry, we understand the complexities of managing people who work in multiple roles across multiple locations. It’s vital every team member has the relevant communication to keep them engaged, but also to ensure the correct message is passed on to the customer.

Our Leisure People has been specifically designed to help operators share the company message and engage staff who don’t work regularly from a desk. The iOS and Android app enables fast, relevant communication that can be read and digested in moments, reaching the entire workforce – not just those with a corporate email. It can also be measured by the management team.

The tool provides a single point of contact that connects each employee to the rest of the organisation. For instance, secure enterprise messaging allows employees to communicate – all within company control – either one-to-one, in small groups or via topics created for a specific purpose, such as the launch of a new centre or a promotional event.

Broadcasts allow management to share files, send targeted reminders and highlight open shifts that need filling, as well as sharing updates and news articles, event information and staff vacancies.

Quizzes can be sent to test employees’ understanding and help with their continuous professional development, while Forms allow management to send a staff survey or compliance-related update; staff can respond directly from their smartphone in seconds. Meanwhile, Information Library contains practical, searchable information on the company and its rules and procedures.

The app can also be integrated with HR systems, enabling staff to book leave and access payslips without visiting a separate website or remembering another log-in.

The entire experience is about engaging staff with the right message in a quick, efficient way that reduces employee turnover and boosts team productivity. It’s currently being piloted at GLL, with great success.

Moving forward, the tool will enable operators to build courses, so new staff automatically receive an induction pack containing video and interactive content to onboard them into their role – all from their smartphone.


The app can link up with HR

Leonie Wileman COO Premier Software


Leonie Wileman

CORE by Premier is unlike other business management software systems in that it doesn’t have a specific HR area. Rather, it draws the information from other functions within the software to communicate directly with staff.

Staff scheduling is managed through the appointment booking system, which is updated in real time and accessible to staff on their tablet or mobile. This enables the manager to move appointments in case of sickness or holidays easily – no need for team meetings. It also anticipates the need for additional staff dependent on numbers booked into classes and treatments. 

Where CORE really makes a difference is its reporting function. The reports provide a host of information that can be run and issued to colleagues either verbally or through the automated reporting function. The information can be used to determine the level of training required, whether staff are hitting performance targets, or more generally their overall performance. It’s a completely transparent system, with managers able to track staff progress on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. 

CORE essentially streamlines the staff management process. It links the manager directly with the staff through emailing reports, as well as providing individuals with performance data.



CORE by Premier anticipates staffing needs based on numbers booked into classes

Erik Fjellborg CEO Quinyx


Erik Fjellborg

Quinyx’s employee scheduling and workforce management tool helps operators ensure they have the right people in the right place at the right time, making life easier for both managers and employees.

It’s an intelligent, intuitive, cloud-based system that helps automate labour-intensive processes like scheduling, payroll, time punching, communication and forecasting, saving organisations an average of nine hours per manager per week. It brings about a 5 per cent reduction in employee cost and, we believe, a 100 per cent improvement in communication.

For managers, smart schedules can be automatically produced at the click of a button, while employees can easily see when they’re working, swap shifts and apply for leave from any device with our mobile app.

Alongside this, Quinyx comes with powerful budgeting and forecasting tools that enable operators to make better, data-driven decisions.

Operators want to consistently deliver a great experience for their customers, but this is difficult when key staff waste hours each week on scheduling. Automating this process frees up time for managers to focus on delivering the best experience for their customers.

Operators will also see a direct impact on the bottom line. Through better scheduling, an improved overview of the metrics and KPIs connected to the workforce, Quinyx can significantly improve the way health clubs manage their labour costs.

Sats Elixia – Scandinavia’s largest gym chain with more than 8,000 employees across 160 sites in Sweden, Norway and Finland – optimised the performance of its workforce using Quinyx. It streamlined labour-intensive processes – managing scheduling, time and attendance, and payroll – which saved the business both time and money.

As well as improving and refining the product, our developers are working on Quinyx Insights. This new module will be able to make accurate predictions and detailed forecasts of future staffing requirements by analysing historical data such as time punches, absences, scheduled hours, sales and other key performance indicators.

Through analysis, Quinyx can proactively present workforce optimisation suggestions based on different data streams.


Employees can remotely manage their shifts using the Quinyx app

Jens Holm-Møller Director & co-founder Mobaro


Jens Holm-Møller

Mobaro has a long history of working with retailers, parks and attractions, and is now launching into the health and fitness sector. We offer an operational management solution that enables operators to keep track of promotions, service standards and safety procedures.

We want to empower staff with the best tools available for doing the job right, so Mobaro comes with tools designed to enhance the way the frontline staff work. For example, the system’s administration module allows managers to create checklists, tasks and operational guidelines for staff, who get access via the Mobaro app on mobile devices.

Using the app to conduct scheduled checks on equipment, staff are assisted by guidelines such as reference photos and manuals. They can also create tasks and attach photos, audio and video to establish a clear trail for further action.

In return, managers get a full overview of the chain’s performance in terms of promotions, safety, cleaning – or indeed any other insight they choose to add.

For managers administrating a number of sites, Mobaro can customise an overview of all facilities into one dashboard and narrow down to regional data or a single site. 

Combining mobile app technology with a web-based administration module connects headquarters and sites, managers and staff members to each other in real-time for efficient communication.

Drayton Manor Theme Park in Staffordshire has been using Mobaro for almost a year and emphasises the empowerment it gives team members, as well as the convenience of real-time park status monitoring.

This autumn a new cross-platform version with redesigned interfaces and features will enhance the user experience and make workflows even more intuitive and efficient.

Originally published in Health Club Management 2016 issue 10

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