How to do Cool Stuff!
An update on where we're at with the PAYG (BLUK!) System...
Thanks for your patience whilst we overcome the blips in the new PAYG (BLUK!) System.
Here's some cool stuff to try:
Please ensure that you are opting out of sessions that have been pre-booked for you using one of the methods above as soon as you know you cannot attend (Points 1 & 2). This helps us offer your place to someone else, allows you guilt-free non-attendance, avoids potentially being charged a session credit for a no show or a late cancel (from November onwards), and allows us to continue to offer the same great flexible PAYG system you're used to, just with the caveat now that we have added the facility for you to easily let us know if you're not coming, a-la PAYG (BLUK!).
- Cancel out of one of your booked sessions within the app - see video (42 seconds)
- Cancel out of one of your booked sessions within the online portal - see video (41 seconds)
- Signing up / Wait-listing for a session you don't ordinarily attend through the app - see video (1 minute 51 seconds)
- Signing up / Wait-listing for a session you don't ordinarily attend through the online portal - see video (1 minute 29 seconds)
I must say though that the majority of you have already been doing this to great effect already, so thank you very much indeed!
Getting off the wait list and into the squad...
For your interest and understanding the way the wait list works is this:
- I determine the maximum number of people who can attend a session and list this as a "threshold"* within my system account. Depending on the nature of the session and how many lanes we have booked, determines what this threshold is set at. I plan to tweak this as we go forwards to best manage the program
- if the number of people booked in for a session remains ABOVE the threshold, anyone trying to reserve a spot will be offered the ability to WAIT LIST themselves
- if enough people opt-out of a particular session and the total number drops below the set threshold, anyone on the wait list will be sent an automated SMS asking them if they still want to join in the order in which they joined the wait list
- if someone doesn't accept their wait listed spot, number 2 in the queue will be automatically contacted until someone accepts.
- you have the ability to opt-out of a wait list in the same way you'd opt out of a normal session, thus freeing up that place
*there may still be a few incidences where the threshold is exceeded and we have a particularly busy session. As you get used to managing your pre-planned attendances, we can counter for these times with additional coaching support if / when truly needed. How these busy times would occur is much the same way as that would have happened with the old system. I have always created a "buffer" of an additional 3 to 4 people per lane to account for people "no showing". Whilst the new system works to prevent this happening, the total number of people booked per session by myself up to 12 months in advance of the session still exceeds these thresholds, otherwise I'd have to have selectively chosen who I wanted to remain as "permanently booked" and I doubt that'd be politically correct to do so!!
In practice over the last 2 to 3 weeks, people have been opting out well before the session (thank you!) or simply not showing (tsk, tsk! It's OK, you're still learning the new modus operandi..) and thus far we have always been below these thresholds. Hence, anyone who has tried to wait list this last 2 to 3 weeks has been accepted. This won't always be the case of course but now is a great time to try wait listing yourself for a session you've always fancied having a dabble at!
The new app...
We're about 10 days away all being well from having the new app available on iPhone and Android devices. This will replace the generic Mind Body Connect app that some of you have already downloaded but still has the same "engine" that some of you are really enjoying and which I will show you below. Whilst the new app is costing us an arm and leg to produce, it will be totally free for you to use and I hope that it will improve your experience above what you've had this last 2 to 3 weeks.
The benefit of the new app is that it will be uncluttered by other businesses, will look and feel like "Swim Smooth", will have it's own cool Swim Smooth App logo, will respond quicker and gives you much better access to all the stuff you're likely to want to use in your new account (like wait list notifications, super-easy credit purchasing etc), thus freeing you up from any unnecessary visits to the computer - it'll all be there at your fingertips. It will look something like this with respect to the functions:
The irksome stuff:
The major grievance that is still outstanding within the new PAYG (BLUK!) System is how you are viewing your remaining credits. Here's the issue:
The good news though is that a) I'm still keeping a manual register to triple-check everything until we're smoothly through this process, b) the system from my end is seeing everyone's true remaining credits "correctly" enough to send out an automated email* letting you know when your credits are running low and that it's time to top up. For some of you, this might be enough anyway (because you prefer to be swimming and enjoying some great coaching rather than fiddling with your account), but I'd like you to all have clarity and know what you're looking at, just as soon as I know what you're looking at too!
- we've traditionally used a paper PAYG card where you've always been able to see at a glance how many sessions you have remaining. You've told me that you want to commit to a particular set of sessions and I have booked you in for these sessions
- with the new system, I have had to individually book you into the squad's schedule for the next 12 months. If you're planning to swim 3 times per week and we swim 50 weeks of the year, you've essentially got 150 unpaid reservations. This needs to be the case otherwise other swimmers might try to book places in the future and thus take your spot. For many of you whom have been loyal to the squad for 8+ years I can only imagine what sort of Armageddon this might cause! So I'm preventing that and safe-guarding your places by allowing you to have unpaid reservations for the year ahead
- the trouble is that if you don't have 150 credits to reconcile the 150 booked sessions, you'll show in the system as owing for 150 minus how many credits you actually have. Not ideal! So let's say you have 20 credits remaining (as per the old system), your account would say that you've got 20 scheduled (paid) sessions and 130 unpaid bookings remaining. This is where the confusion has been. The second confusion is that not everyone is seeing it as simply as this, i.e. people's accounts aren't consistently showing the same thing. My task now is to get everyone's accounts to be at least showing the same thing (no quick, easy task!), but once it's done, we should all be on the same page.
We'll get there! I hope you can start to see now how the whole system will work and how it will help everyone enjoy an even better program with Swim Smooth Perth for the long term.
Cheers - over and out!
*please add email@example.com to your safe-senders list to ensure this gets through.