How Efficiently Is Your Gym Run?
According to the 2019 state of the UK fitness industry report, the sector of recreational exercise is currently experiencing an unforeseen boom. This year alone, the number of fitness facilities in the UK has risen by over 200, with market value increasing by 4.2% to £5.1 billion. Over 10 million people in the UK now have a gym membership. Many gym owners agree that there has never been a better time for business; opportunities are vast and everywhere to be found. However, is your business taking the right steps to improve profit margins – or despite recent events, have you seen a downturn in business and profit? Either way, here are a few areas to consider when evaluating the health of your gym. For some this may involve attracting new clientele, restructuring staff schedules, or simply cutting down on operational costs.
1. Gyms are a People Business
For some, gyms may only be a place to train intensively, yet for others their local fitness centre can grow in reputation as a social hub. Managers and owners should be constantly monitoring the behaviour of their clientele to discover why why they come to their gym in the first place. Knowing this allows the possibility to constantly improve services and customer satisfaction.
To monitor this, perhaps have managers and trainers write up quick reports reflecting on interesting observations, such as the most popular lessons or classes, peak times, or what the least used equipment is during a given day. Information like this can inform promotional offers or optimise operational costs by pointing to what could be improved.
2. Have the Proper Health and Safety Standards in Place
It may seem obvious, but having the correct health and safety insurance and procedures could mean the difference between life and death for your business. Having precautions against employee and client injury is hugely important. Unfortunately, there are no exact guidelines regarding safety in the gym industry, as you would find and with something like the Food Standards Agency in the hospitality industry, but both the gym and staff are expected to conform to basic standards under the Health and Safety Executives jurisdiction. Failure to comply may result in inspection and heavy fines.
On the topic of compliance, make sure your employees are being paid the correct amount and working the correct amount of hours every week. Just like any other industry, gyms are still subject to labour laws which are rigorously enforced. Enforcing compliance not only ensures your employee’s well-being, but can also save on costs in the long run. Knowing when your employees are scheduled to work and for what type of shift can let your payroll processor know the exact amount they are due to be paid.
3. Schedule the right staff
Labour cost can be a massive drain on resources if not handled correctly, but there are many ways to keep expenses down while simultaneously boosting productivity. One of the best ways to achieve this is by having the best staff available at peak times. More experienced or skilled staff are better capable of handling busier periods. Giving your clientele the best support they can get is dependent on the staff that you schedule and having the right staff available at the right time will without a doubt increase member retention. However, that is not to say that you should ignore your newer members of staff, as soon they could be just as valuable as more tenured members of your workforce. It is best to schedule them during quieter times to allow the opportunity to comfortably train and grow accustomed to their new environment.
4. Manage Rates of Pay Per Class
That is not all there is to optimising staff scheduling, however. Different instructors could end up teaching different classes or lessons and thus get paid at different rates during the day. If any of your staff are currently working like this, does payroll have difficulty processing the resulting variations? Does it inform or negatively affect any processes in your business? If so, consider a workforce management solution like Bizimply which includes convenient time card export for efficient payroll processing, among other time-saving functionalities like drag-and-drop scheduling and accurate clock-in information.
Also, how do you currently track employee qualifications to decide who teaches when organising gym lessons or classes? Franchise gyms especially can have a significant problem in this area when an employee is sent to cover another local gym. The resident manager may not be aware of their qualifications and toss would not know that classes they can be scheduled for. Again, a workforce management solution like Bizimply includes online employee profiles that store and display all relevant and essential information about each employee to managing staff. Cloud based storage ensures that this information is not limited to one location and that managers who deal with shared employees can get exactly what they need when they need it.
5. Know your competition
Knowing your competition is being aware of what you can offer over rival brands. Perhaps customers have expressed more satisfaction over your personal trainers exercise regimens. Advertising for gyms is quite prevalent, to the point where even you might be advertising your gym prominently as well! However, the question to ask is are you promoting your gym in the right way? Are the right kind of clientele coming to your gym expecting the right kind of service? Evaluating and executing on the appropriate image of your brand can greatly improve customer service employee engagement and vastly improve your bottom line.
Overall, we have demonstrated that there are countless ways of improving on service and unnecessary costs in your business without sacrificing on quality. Know of any other observations or actions taken that led to success for your business? Let us know on social media at Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin!