This article was written by Maddie Radcliff, Sr. Solutions Architect at Upper Hand.
Adoption to a new system or process is a challenge no matter the business you are in. More often it’s the fear of staff buy-in of the software and the time that it will take to get everyone up to speed that keeps us from making a necessary change.
In the sports industry, it can sometimes be even harder to adjust because we not only have to think about improving the customer experience and improving business operations, but also how we get seasoned coaches who want to just focus on training to focus on adoption of a new process.
How do we win all around with comfort in a new process, increased productivity, and efficient day to day operations? These last phases are often the most important because adoption of everyday users is what ensures the success of the project.
3 Tips to Increase Staff Buy-in of a Sports Scheduling Software
1. Engage employees early and often
You want to make sure that your new sports scheduling software solves the business problems like providing robust reporting, features needed for scheduling, membership management, and retail. You also want to confirm that the software solves solutions of its main users — including your staff. Make sure your staff can identify their current headaches and that your new solution addresses those.
For example, can your employees see a mobile schedule of their appointments so they know when they need to arrive at the facility? Can they market open time slots in their schedule to get more bookings? How about consistently booking out a customer in their schedule? Can they see how many bookings they have each week and what their paycheck might look like so they can plan future appointments?
By engaging employees during the evaluation process, you make sure the solution meets their needs. This increases employee buy-in and willingness to implement a sports management software.
2. Involve them in onboarding (and educate!)
To improve your staff buy-in, you must get your staff excited about the change. Make sure you include them in the initial onboarding and education of the new software. Confirm the needs of your staff, and make sure they are addressed during the onboarding process. This will ensure they are ready to hit the ground running when you hit your go-live date.
The most critical piece of employee buy-in is to make sure they know how to complete their daily tasks. Include them in any necessary onboarding meetings where you will be discussing these workflows and features. Additionally, share any resources that you receive in training — like access to the help center, customer stories, or training calls — to help set them up for success.
3. Set an example, set goals, and make it fun!
Like you teach in sports, be a leader. If you put in the work to show them that you are involved and excited for the change, they will be too. Add incentives for your staff to use the software. Set goals for membership sales or number of training packages sold through the software. Introduce new ways for instructors to grow their training opportunities while also increasing revenue streams for the business. By making it fun, you’ll gain high employee buy-in from the start.
Putting it all together
Increased engagement and excitement of change is the answer to how we win all around with comfort in adopting a new process, increased productivity, and efficient day to day operations. By involving users from the beginning of this new process and making them feel a part of the change, you ensure that your staff buy-in to the process and are prepared and excited to push the success of your software forward.