The Club Operations Strategy Wheel


Process Design

Processes are tangible, actionable systems that help to achieve a desired outcome or goal. The more frictionless and enjoyable you can make these systems in your health club, the happier your members and staff will be, and happy people stay with you for the long run.  

What Kind of Process Changes Could Improve the Health of Your Fitness Club?

Arguably one of the most difficult things to change within a company, processes can foster a sense of ease and efficiency, or cause undue stress and discomfort to staff and customers. There are several steps along the member journey that require processes that should be built and tweaked according to member feedback that details what works for them and what doesn’t. 

Consider your current processes for the following touchpoints: 

  • The way in which your members are welcomed and checked in
  • How your equipment is determined in need of repair
  • Your club membership cancellation policy

Each of these systems within your club can be a point of pain or an opportunity to impress. This is the first place an operator should look to improve, as changing processes are usually low to no cost, but can have an enormous impact on the member and staff experience. 

What Makes Process Change Difficult?

While changing a process generally takes little in the way of monetary investment, it does however come at a cost to you and your team’s time, energy and thought. To understand what the member experience’s are in your club from entrance to exit can be a challenge without literally stepping into their shoes, and because we are inherently biased in our analyses, it’s impossible to know how your members think and feel without actually being a member. The next best thing you can do as an operator to determine where the member experience drops off, is to ASK. 

Using Member Feedback to Inform Changes in Your Health Club Processes

Having a tool that automatically measures the member experience and captures the voice of your members can be extremely valuable when it comes to understanding what processes need refinement or total overhauls. Using the “word search” tool in MXMetrics, you can type in key “pain” words and filter out all feedback members have given you with these painful sentiments. 

[QUICK TIP] Some helpful word filters are:

  • “try/tried” 
  • “difficult”
  • “couldn’t/can’t” 

Searching phrases for pain points and reading what is happening in the context of member feedback can help you better understand the challenges your members are facing. 

Get Your Staff Involved in Solution Discussions

Because your staff is on the frontline interacting with members on a daily basis, they are a major asset for determining solutions to the blockages and stumbling blocks when it comes to process flow with members. After obtaining feedback from members on pain points within their own journeys, look to your frontline staff to brainstorm solutions, and come up with training on these new processes. Keeping staff involved in being part of the solution helps keep them keyed into the success of building new processes and a better member experience.

Health Club Process Design Improvement Examples 

Consider these examples of process pain points discovered from listening to member feedback, and changes made to the processes from my two clubs Worx of Wenatchee:

  1. Cancellation Policy
    1. Feedback: Too difficult to cancel membership 
    2. Solution: Eliminate cancellation altogether! Instead have FREE Alumni Membership or Premium Alumni Membership at $10/month. Both allow for ease of reentry without extra fees, and a continuation of relationship. 
  2. Broken Equipment 
    1. Feedback: Equipment broken and not repaired in a timely manner
    2. Solution: QR codes on each piece of equipment, when scanned it takes the user to the maintenance request page managed by staff. 

Process Design for Gym Operators and Health Club Owners | MXM+ Helps Fitness Industry Experts Determine Which Processes to Refine in their Gyms and How to Implement them with their Fitness Staff

You’ve Made Adjustments to Your Process….Now What?

By improving process flow, you improve the member experience. When you improve the member experience, you create a more robust marketing department (your members), which leads to referrals, sales, and retention. So listen to your members on what they have difficulty with and work with your staff to find solutions that make the entire member journey smooth and seamless! 

If you’re wondering how using member feedback to implement new or finetuned processes might translate in your gym, check out the video below to see how Workout Anytime Owner and Operator, John Waskow. He uses MXM’s platform to finetune processes that in turn allow him and his team to develop authentic, meaningful member relationships. He credits this relationship building aspect to the attrition reduction and increase in referral numbers at both gym locations. 


More Strategy Wheel Posts

  -- Process Design
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