Find out how we saved 14,000 staff hours over three months with an online lesson-booking build for Everyone Active
The challenge: Administering lesson programmes required hundreds of staff across swim centres nationwide and long queues
Trained front-of-house staff were overrun by parents registering their children for the appropriate swimming lesson level to match their child's ability, whilst those with children about to complete a lesson level needed to transfer their child to a new session for a convenient date and time.
The swimming lessons schedules resulted in a high concentration of requests for a verbose administration process on weekday evenings (peak leisure centre times). This meant other facility users couldn't access the centre's trained and supportive staff.
The approach: Defining the interactions and optimising the user experience
The Lessons Online product needed to handle processes that were operated by front-of-house staff on multiple screens and systems, with the benefit of being able to chat to a parent to clarify the child's ability.
We undertook working sessions with key stakeholders from sales, operations, product and applications teams to map the data exchanges and customer inputs required, before blending the knowledge of swim coaches and instructors within our own team with the client expertise.
Working closely with the client's back end systems provider, we identified and defined new API methods for the reservation of session spaces, transferring out of and in to sessions, and the need to clean up the state of user accounts from incomplete sessions.
The execution: Lessons Online - Designing and building a bespoke product to out-perform resource heavy processes
Technical Consulting / User Experience / Performance in Build
Despite the advantages of a face-to-face experience, each lesson sign-up was taking over 20 minutes. Our user experience practitioners set about identifying the requirements of each key touch point - finding a pool, showing the lesson programme, assessing the child's ability, showing session availability, reserving your slot and transacting online.
Working closely with our product engineers, we crafted journeys and data exchanges in tandem. Keeping a keen eye on API performance with large volumes of data, we designed user journeys and interfaces that would outperform the in-centre operation from the data imports and API methods available.
The Lessons Online product (a single page application built in ReactJs) accommodated for the absence of a session reservation method, whilst the middleware (PHP Laravel application) handled lists of jobs designed to check transactions to ensure slots were not filled by incomplete user sessions.
The end result delivered a bespoke product that takes the resource-intensive in-centre process, putting it in the hands of parents using any device they choose at home.
The average time taken by customers using the product is 7 minutes end-to-end; that's a 65% efficiency gain whilst freeing up hundreds of thousands of staff and customer hours for other tasks.
Flexible product design and build will always pay dividends. In this instance, more areas of the client's business have migrated onto the Lessons Online product, bringing new capability profiling criteria with each one. This is one of the reasons our work was recognised for a UK Active Digital Transformation Award.
Safely profiling children against lesson frameworks and transacting in high volumes
Enabling parents to sign up their children for swimming lessons, and to transfer booked sessions online, posed significant business and customer benefits. We also placed a great deal of emphasis on accurately assessing a child's current swimming ability to make sure they enter at the right level. This is imperative for health and safety, as well as having a significant impact on a child's water confidence and their engagement in developing this life skill. We wanted to unlock better performance, all round.
14,000 - Staff hours saved within 3 months by enabling online lesson bookings for over a hundred swim centres. ROI boosted by overhead savings.
7 minutes - To profile a child's swim capability, find convenient sessions for their level and buy online via Direct Debit. Safe profiling and easy transactions.
>500k - Monthly visits by parents exploring the most suitable and convenient lessons for their children. Technology built to scale.