Tag Archives: Access Control

Customer Relationship Management (CRM): What is it and do you need a system in place?

27 June 2018 openplay Leave a comment Analytics, Booking System, Marketing, Memberships, Operations, Technology

In 2018, customer relationship management (CRM) software became the leading and fastest growing software market, with a growth rate of 16%, according to research by Gartner. Worldwide, CRM software revenue reached $39.5 billion at the end of 2017, surpassing that of database management systems (DBMS). With such rapid growth, people have been given little time to get their heads around what CRM actually is. Many people use the word, sounding impressive in emails and board meetings, but frequently they confuse its meaning with more general management software. So, what exactly is CRM and should your wellbeing business use one of these highly complex systems?

What is it?

Simply put, CRM is a way to manage and improve your interactions with customers and potential customers. Sometimes it refers to a company’s theoretical strategy or process. In its most recent format, it is a software product, usually stored in the cloud, that records, reports and analyses every interaction between company and customer. It sounds very Big Brother, but it is intended to serve both the service provider and the consumer.

The Benefits of CRM

  1. Personalised marketing: CRM allows for a more personalised approach to marketing. Think of targeted ads that follow you around the internet; CRM refines this personalisation further. Customers or potential customers are only advertised to about products or events that are highly relevant to their interests.
  2. Automated sales: Salespeople cannot afford to waste time rooting through spreadsheets and notepads to remember their relationship with a customer. CRM puts this information directly onto their dashboard allowing for a much smoother and more effective pitch.
  3. Higher retention: It is proven that retention rates and member usage are directly correlated. For each additional visit by a member in any given month, the risk of that member cancelling in the subsequent month is reduced by 33%, according to research by IHRSA. With a fitness CRM system, you can monitor and reach out to inactive members who are most vulnerable to cancellation.
  4. Customers feel valued: A mother might call with a query about her daughter’s tennis group. With an efficient sports CRM system, you can quickly search her name and load every previous interaction. With the facts laid before you in your dashboard, you will be able to provide a more personalised customer support service. Member care is a journey; it evolves as your members change.
  5. Happy Birthday: Automatic birthday wishes can be sent to every client with the gift of a special offer. For many activity providers, kids’ birthday parties are a big chunk of their income. An effective CRM system could decipher appropriate clients and send a promotional email in advance of the child’s birthday.

Budget for change

CRM systems for sports typically contain vast amounts of sensitive personal data, such as customer contact information, date of birth etc. This information increases in value over time, as a customer’s profile builds up. In its very nature, CRM is prone to General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) non-compliance. CRM budgets are expected to increase as companies follow GDPR procedures.

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Reducing Paper at Sports Centres

11 June 2018 openplay Leave a comment Booking System, Marketing, Operations, Technology

Whether it’s the rising threat of global warming, the stress of sorting through mounting documents, or simply a fear of papercuts; in the age of digitisation, paper and printing products are edging towards extinction. People are discovering that printing is an unnecessary expense, with the average small business spending £14K per year, according to research by software developers Reckon. Paper and ink are just the tip of a melting iceberg; hidden beneath the surface are the costs of keeping traditional filing systems, employee time, and machine maintenance.

Switch from paper bookings to online bookings

Paper is fiddly to manage and far from secure. Storing your data through a booking system like OpenPlay means everything is in one place and nothing gets lost. More importantly, no private information can be misappropriated (GDPR alert!). Our venue management software caters to block bookings, recurring payments, voucher codes and lots more. There is no longer a need to scribble or score out mistakes. Quickly alter, cancel, or refund a reservation and issue automatic confirmations to the customer. Unlike manual paper methods, our CRM (customer relationship management) system records your client interactions, so all information is up-to-date, relevant, and personalised. Ditch the Filofax and paper spreadsheets; a quick glance at your OpenPlay dashboard tells you your facility’s usage rates, financial information, and demographic breakdown.

Digital Registers

Digital registers not only reduce your printing needs, but they are kept up-to-date. Any last minute changes to registers are instantly registered in the system, meaning that instructors have an accurate register right up to the moment they begin their class. Bookings are coordinated with registers, so you can sign attendees can sign and out via the OpenPlay app, or instructors can sign them in via the coach app. You can also add notes, such as illnesses or allergies, to a client’s name, so your coaches and staff will be automatically updated.

Read more: Eliminate single-use plastic at your gym

Implement Recycling Bins

Sometimes paper needs to be used. The polar bears will forgive you for the odd printout, but only if you print back to back and only if you recycle. Create a recycling hub behind reception and print out posters to remind employees and guests to recycle… or don’t actually. Scratch that last point.

Other ways you can help the environment…

  • If you sell plastic bottles of water, why not swap to reusable bottles and provide water fountains.
  • Switch from paper towels to hand towels or energy efficient hand dryers.
  • Perhaps instead of music for classes, you can have your coaches sing or beatbox in between instructions.
  • Ban wrapping paper from the company’s Secret Santa; it is never a surprise anyway.
  • Switch off air-conditioning/ heating. Tell clients this aids muscle recovery and hope they don’t know any better.
  • A popular environmental fitness trend straight from LA is to drain your swimming pool of water and hold mock swim classes instead. Students have found that imagining the resistance of the water means that they are not only working their muscles but also exercising their creative minds.

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What is the Future of Access Control in Sports Venues?

21 March 2018 openplay Leave a comment Booking System

Currently many sports venues use man power to monitor who is accessing their facilities. If not a person on the door, one generally needs a a membership card, fob or access code. These are fine for members, but don’t cater to drop-in bookings. Apps are much more flexible.  They can be programmed for a specific time and date, allow one-off access, or can expire after a certain number of visits. Apps are the main line of development for recreational and entertainment industries. We had a look at the future of access control across every genre, with biometrics-based security systems being another route being explored. Our unique body traits can be used for identity purposes and are a lot harder to replicate than a signature. Not only can these developments replace access to venues, but also online logins, car keys, credit cards, and passports.

1.Apps with barcodes

Electronic ticketing has completely changed how we enter a rugby match, concert, and check in for a flight. At OpenPlay, we want to bring this technology to the humble five-a-side pitch and park tennis court. The benefit of using a barcode, is that it automatically syncs with your booking in your OpenPlay Pocket App.  App barcodes  can also be tailored to the needs of a specific venue. For example, if you’re a school with minors on the premises until 4pm, you can make sure outsider passes only activate at 4.30pm. This access can be restricted to a single pitch, multiple pitches, or to pitch and changing room. Many of the apps out there require a 3G or wifi connection at the scanning location, which isn’t always possible. OpenPlay’s access passes can be used even when your phone is offline.

2.Voice recognition

HMRC, HSBC, and Barclays are some of the first organisations to offer voice ID for telephone logins. Customers repeat the simple phrase “My voice is my password”. Frankly, we think it lacks creative pizzazz. Perhaps a line from Prince of Bel Air sung in the key of F# may have spiced up the experience? Still, a technical achievement- we’ll give them that. The system takes note of 100 or so nuances in a person’s speech and can even work if you have a cold or suddenly develop a cockney accent. There was a case where the system was fooled. BBC reporter Dan Simmons’s non-identical twin brother managed to gain access to his account by mimicking his voice. We don’t see twin theft access as a huge problem if this tech is on the side of a a tennis court gate or changing room entrance

3.Fingerprint scanning

James Bond has been doing it since 1971: it was only a matter of time before the rest of us caught up. Used worldwide on iphones, fingerprint scanning can be used to pay online or via contactless. What if someone chops off my finger to steal my court booking? Don’t fret, your backhand is safe, as the technology requires blood flow in order to work.

4.Heart-rate recognition

Can you feel my heart beating? Romantic? Maybe not, but this tech knows your heart better than any past, present or future lover can. Bionym is currently developing a product called Nymi. It is a wearable device that uses electrocardiogram to identify a user by their heartbeat pattern. It is reliable unless you have a major cardiac arrest. So don’t run too hard on the pitch or you might not be able to access the changing room. This technology seems to be moving towards mental health rather than access control. It is hoped that it will be able to measure human emotion and detect depression and other illnesses.

5.Retinal and iris recognition

Unbelievably, eye scanning is split into two categories, with retinal and iris recognition using very different technology. Retinal works much the same as vein-pattern recognition, scanning the neural cell pattern that make up the retina. Retinal scanning can help detect illnesses such as AIDS, syphilis, and leukemia. Iris identification scans the eye’s distinctive colour pattern. Iris scanning uses camera technology with infrared illumination. This technology is much easier to implement and is already being used for identifying people at border-crossings and airports.

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