Updating your technology platform can give your business new capabilities to improve the member experience and your bottom line. You can get more organized, thus improving efficiency. You can unveil a smoother process for customer bookings, which work faster and more effectively for both members and staff. However, the idea of going through a data conversion can still be nerve-wracking for even the most prepared team. We consistently help gyms transition from old software to new and improved. Here are the top keys we have found to ensure proper customer data transfer.
Make it nearly invisible to your customers.
An ideally executed conversion will be nearly invisible to your members. However, they will need to be notified of a possible billing date change and different memo on their bank statement. If you can keep billing dates the same, even better. As long as the bank memo line still includes the name of the gym, this reduces your chances of alarming anyone with an unrecognized charge on their account.
Focus on the positives.
Make the focal point to loop members into the fun and exciting improvements by switching to the new software! For example, you may now have access to a branded app for the first time, or a new and improved app. Your process for booking appointments will be smoother and easier for members, so this is another key point to showcase when announcing the changes.
Keep your staff in the loop and well trained.
A proper transition can take a few weeks to complete, so it is important to keep your staff in the loop the whole time. Keep them updated with emails, newsletters, videos, and meetings so they feel knowledgeable at every point during the conversion. If there will be a short window of time where they cannot access certain features or components of the system, have a plan in place so that your team can still do their jobs effectively. They will be the main points of contact that interact with members throughout the transition, and you want to make sure they feel confident and empowered at every point. The vibe that the staff creates regarding changes sets the tone for how the membership base collectively responds.
Seize the opportunity to improve old systems.
Use the conversion as an opportunity to rethink why you’ve always done things the way you have, and if there is any possibility to improve. Since everyone is on their A-game ready to learn new processes anyway, consider this a chance to improve upon what you already have been doing. For example, maybe you have always done paper forms for guest liability waivers, but your new system has a chance to incorporate iPads for quick guest entry and waiver. Take a moment to self evaluate your systems and processes, and look for ways to make them more customer forward.
Have extensive hands-on training.
When you layout the training strategy for your team, it is important to include a lot of hands-on training. A training boot camp day is a great way to launch your staff training. Bring in managers from other locations to cover the gym so your entire team can participate and learn. The best hands-on training approach is to role-play scenarios with your team, and repeat them until they become a habit. Assign the club manager with certain tasks before, during, and after the transition for every single employee. Ensure each team member’s training knowledge is accounted for, and check in often to see how everyone is doing with the new systems.
Get on-site help from your new provider.
Find out what your new vendor offers for on-site help, and capitalize on that time. For example, you can have a representative on-site that is accustomed to helping things go smoothly behind the scenes as well as being customer service friendly for potential direct interactions with members. We can make recommendations on the amount of time that makes sense for your particular transfer.
Take data history seriously.
The more details that are transferred to the new system, the better the service that can be provided to members. Previous notes can make a world of difference in how a member perceives their level of service to be. For example, having a note with someone’s nickname can a more personable experience should the member have any questions on their account. These special moments add up and create impressions of great customer service.
Ask your vendor about previous transfers, and set realistic goals of what to expect. At OneFitStop, we have worked on conversions from a wide variety of gym management software to ours. This gives us the upper hand on how to prepare for any possible bumps in the road. Rather than bottlenecking the process, we can set realistic time frames and expectations to ensure a smooth transfer.
Ready to make the switch?
OneFitStop is changing lives for gym owners, managers, and members through our top-notch gym management software. Contact us today for a free demo, and see the difference that we can make for your fitness business.