A pivotal moment for both coaches and athletes.
It’s a time to reflect, regroup, and strategize to ignite a second-half surge to close out the game on a high note. Additionally, it’s a time to reflect on the first half achievements and the progress made towards a greater goal.
As we near the end of June, we are coming up on our own “halftime” – halftime of the year 2023.
At Upper Hand, we’ve been hard at work not only enhancing current features, but releasing entirely new products to empower you in every aspect of running a growing sports training business.
From simple verbiage changes that enhance your clients’ experiences to completely new functionality like Athlete Progression Tracking, we’re excited to share some of the highlights of the advancements we’ve made throughout our sports scheduling app.
As we strategize for a valuable second half of the year, our team continues to prioritize new innovations that make running and growing your business even easier.
Let’s roll the tape and take a look at some of the highlights.
Camps & clinics upgrades
One priority of our team has been to enhance the staff and client experience when it comes to running successful sports camps and clinics. We’ve pushed a number of updates that improve multiple aspects of running successful sports camps, from pricing flexibility to event-day logistics.
New, flexible pricing options
We’ve built some additional functionality to increase flexibility when it comes to pricing your camps and clinics. Offer early-bird pricing or raise your prices as the event nears by setting a pricing schedule for your fixed schedule events. This feature empowers you to automatically implement pricing changes after a set date.
Additionally, you can choose to offer pricing tiers within your camps and clinics. For example, if you are hosting a 5-day Summer Sports Camp, you can not only set the price for the full event, but you can also set a price for clients who attend only one session, a price for those who attend two sessions, and so on.
Easy roster switching
We also know that sometimes things come up, and a client who initially registered for your Tuesday clinic now wants to attend Thursday’s session instead. Now, transferring this client between fixed event rosters is as easy as a couple of clicks! This makes it easier for you to maintain accurate event rosters as well as ensure clients are attached to the correct event.
Streamlined event-day check-in
On event day, it can be challenging to efficiently get all of your athletes checked in. We’ve made it even easier for you to streamline this process by alphabetizing your event check in by last name. Speaking of check-in, we’ve added an unpaid client indicator to the check-in drawer that shows which athletes are still unpaid, allowing you to stay on top of your outstanding payments!
Improved calendar functionality
Event check-in isn’t the only area of improvement within Upper Hand’s calendar. We’ve also made a series of updates to make this area of the software even more convenient for you and your staff members.
Revamped calendar card
We swapped some things around on our calendar cards to make them even more useful for you or your front desk staff. Easily view the client name and associated resource without having to hover over the card. This will speed up your check-in process, especially if you have multiple athletes coming in for a similar event offering at the same time.
Take more action in Quick Pay
Quick Pay within the Upper Hand calendar is one of the easiest and most convenient ways to take action on outstanding balances. We’ve added some additional functionality to the Quick Pay modal so that you can take even more action.
Waive a balance right from Quick Pay, instead of navigating to the client’s profile. If a client wants to purchase a retail item, like a bottle of Gatorade or Water, when they are paying for their lesson, you can now add a retail item to their cart while using Quick Pay, and process both in a single transaction.
Filter your calendar view
Whether it’s to help visualize where your staff members will be training in a given day, see your personal schedule, or to see at a glance your paid or unpaid sessions, new calendar filters help you customize your view to be most impactful and save you valuable time. If you operate out of a facility with a number of resources or spaces, you can utilize this filter to help organize your staff members so that they are in the same resource all day (and not bouncing around from space to space trying to figure out where to be). And, you can keep tabs on your unpaid sessions so that you know who you need to collect payments from as they show up to train.
Added scheduling flexibility
Alongside the string of camp and clinic (fixed schedule event) upgrades, we’ve also continued to push enhancements that help you more efficiently run your private or group lessons and training sessions.
Set scheduling timeframes
We know that sometimes, you don’t want your calendar open as wide as the eye can see. So, we’ve made an update to empower you to set how far in advance your clients can book a lesson. Previously, this was a manual process, where you would have to adjust your availability every month or so to prevent clients from booking too far in advance. Now, you can keep control of your schedule at an interval that works best for you.
We know how important membership management is for your business, especially as a source of recurring revenue and stability. Your members are a critical piece of your business, so we know how important it is to make their experience great.
Offer even more membership perks
We’ve made some upgrades to our memberships to make them even more beneficial for both you and your members. In addition to offering percentage-based discounts, you can also choose to apply a dollar-based discount to your memberships (For example, $10 off camps or $15 off lessons).
Additionally, when choosing what perks to give your members, you can now opt to include credit passes as a membership benefit! This gives you even more flexibility to customize your membership offerings to fit the way you run your business.
Manage membership contracts
Just as your clients complete and sign a waiver when they create their Upper Hand account, you now have the opportunity to upload a custom membership contract, which clients can agree to and sign upon enrolling in a membership. And, it is accessible within the client’s profile at any time. If you already have a membership contract that your clients sign, then great – managing this aspect of your business is now easier than ever! If not, you may consider creating a custom membership agreement that outlines the policies of being a member.
Getting rid of the stacks of papers (like membership contracts) in your office is great. But, in the event that you or your members would like to view – and download – a copy of this agreement, you are able to do so. This download not only includes the information included in the contract in which they signed, but also the name of the client and the date that the agreement was signed.
Manage membership statuses
Not only have we added flexibility when it comes to the benefits of your memberships; we’ve also made it easier for you to manage the statuses of your memberships. Should a member decide to cancel their membership, for example ahead of their next billing date, their membership card within their profile will show not only that the status of the membership is set to cancel, but also the date in which the cancellation will go into effect. This makes it even easier for you to manage those pending cancellations.
Additionally, you can now seamlessly change the date in which a client is charged for their membership. For example, if they have been charged on the 5th, but would like to be charged on the 15th, you can now adjust that charge date.
Gain deeper insights into memberships
We’ve also launched new membership landing pages! Similar to our event pages, each of these landing pages has its own unique URL, making it even easier for you to direct people to a specific membership offering, or to embed behind a button on your sports business website. This helps prospective members understand the various benefits and perks of each of your membership options, enabling them to make an informed decision and enroll in the membership that is the best fit for them.
We’ve also made a series of upgrades to the admin experience throughout our software. Let’s take a look at some of the updated actions and capabilities when it comes to managing a successful sports training business.
New instructor access level
Based on feedback from our customers, we’ve added a new software access level: instructor. Those you invite to the software as instructors are able to view their calendar, set their availability, and view their payroll. But, they are limited in processing payments or client contact information. This access level is designed for instructors to be able to view their schedule (and know when and where to show up), but will prevent them from canceling lessons, taking payments away from the front desk, or stealing client contact information to train elsewhere. And, it adds an additional layer of simplicity for those instructors who are brought into your business to coach, but don’t need to be overwhelmed with additional administrative duties or access to financials.
Archive former staff members
To ensure your staff database is up to date, you can archive any old or former staff members, thus removing them from associated events and removing them from the calendar. This will help ensure that you keep things accurate and free of outdated information, improving efficiency and saving time.
Take more action within a client’s profile
If clients opt to “pay later” for their lessons or training sessions, they may find themselves with a larger outstanding balance tied to their account. Pay down a client’s total outstanding balance in one transaction via their Client Profile. If needed, you can also edit a client’s available credits or adjust a client’s credit balance down to 0 from their profile. Within Client Profile Pages, you can also attach a document to a client’s profile – for example medical or health history documentation, progress reports, or other documentation that is accessible by you and your staff members.
Quickly find the client you’re looking for
As your database of clients grows, it can become a bit harder to find the client you’re looking for in your contacts or in Point of Sale. In addition to searching for a client by name or email address, we’ve also added the functionality to search for a client by phone number.
Set date-specific business availability
Need to close early for a company party, or have special hours for a holiday? Easily set date-specific business availability that will be enforced throughout the software. For example, if you are typically open until 9pm, but would like to close at 3pm on Labor Day, you can adjust your business hours for just that one date without having to adjust individual events or staff availability.
New Product Add-Ons
In addition to improving our core software, we’ve also launched a few new product add-ons to make managing other aspects of your business even easier.
Athlete Progression Tracking
Athlete Progression Tracking allows you to build out workouts and training programs and assign athletes to those programs to monitor their progress over time. This helps you to digitize your workouts, develop structured training programs for key goals (for example a 4-week pre-season conditioning program or a 6-week speed and agility program), and keep track of your athletes’ metrics as they move through each workout.
There are a number of benefits tied to tracking athletes’ progress. Not only does this feature help you quantify an athlete’s improvement, but it also helps you establish coaching credibility to continue to grow your brand. For athletes, having a report card with their metrics helps to validate the work they are putting into training. And, it motivates them to stay consistent in order to achieve their goals. For coaches, it helps compartmentalize your training into various programs, and identify key outcomes to utilize in marketing efforts.
This feature is available exclusively to Upper Hand customers for only $25 a month, with no limits on the number of exercises, training programs, or athletes to enroll. Click here for more information about this feature, and to watch a short 90 second video explaining how Athlete Progression Tracking works.
Upper Hand AI
Data is complex. We make it simple. Upper Hand AI is the industry’s first data analytics platform designed specifically for the sports training industry. Our new data solutions offering incorporates advanced reporting and predictive insights to help you make smarter business decisions. Using artificial intelligence technology to build detailed reports, our team will help you tell your data’s story and apply it to your business operations.
Learn more at data.upperhand.com.
P.S. Upper Hand AI isn’t the only new data feature we’ve launched! We’ve also continued to make improvements to the reports found within our core software! From adding the cost and price to the Inventory Report, to adding the last 4 digits of a card in the Ledger Report, we’ve continued to enhance the native Upper Hand reporting to help you take action that grows your business.
WebKit Custom Websites
Our newest offering, WebKit by Upper Hand, empowers you to design and manage your sports business’s website. Choose from over 125 templates, and customize the design to suit your business aesthetic and needs. Along with these templates, WebKit offers a comprehensive set of customizable elements that ensure you have a professional and impressive online presence for your sports training business.
Ready for more?
We’re only halfway through the year, which means we’re just getting started when it comes to product updates. As our team refines our game plan for the second half, one thing remains constant: our desire to challenge the status quo and increase youth sports participation across the country. We invite you to take a look at these features and start a conversation with our team to learn how you can start running your business like a pro with Upper Hand!