Drummond Health & Fitness Education Academy has been providing quality health and fitness training and education for more than 35 years.
Seven years ago, after a chance meeting with Fisikal CEO, Rob Lander, Gill Cummings-Bell, Co-Founder of The Academy, migrated all paper based learner and course management online, using a bespoke solution created by Fisikal. Here, Gill explains how a partnership with Fisikal has enhanced business efficiencies and enabled The Academy to deliver an outstanding student experience which has seen the business flourish in a highly competitive market.
“Prior to 2012, we were relying on paper based processes and basic spreadsheets to manage logistics and learner liaison. Every week, we were delivering multiple courses at venues across the UK, supporting dozens of learners, all with individual needs and at various stages on their education journey. As the business grew, we realised a need to find a more efficient solution.
“Around this time, I attended the annual FitPro conference and happened to bump into Rob Lander. Rob was excited to show me the digital business management solution he had developed for personal trainers. I was impressed and immediately recognised the benefits a similar platform could deliver for our business. I created a ‘wish list’ of functionality and Rob set his team of developers to work!
“Firstly, the solution had to improve our business efficiencies and operational visibility. We needed instant access to the scheduling and booking status of all our courses. This would allow us to better manage the logistics of course delivery and direct resource where most needed, helping to push all courses towards capacity.
“We also needed to incorporate a basic CRM system to house our past, present and potential learner data. Here we could create a personal profile, record any information specific to their needs and maintain a record of their journey with us. We also identified a need to be able to communicate with our learners both directly through email and via collective groups. Not only would this create a line of communication to current learners, it would also enable us to market our upcoming courses to past students and any individual who had made an enquiry.
“Secondly, we needed to create a secure, online information hub for learners. Once logged on, they would gain access to relevant course information including joining instructions, workbooks and other helpful support materials. As they progress through their education journey, all qualifications and courses completed would be logged, creating a chronological record of their professional development.
“Over the course of a month, Fisikal built a bespoke solution that addressed all the needs outlined in my brief and, once we had uploaded all our course and learner data, we completely migrated across to this online solution within a couple of weeks.
“Today, Fisikal plays a critical role in the running of our business and our learner experience. Regular software updates which reflect the evolving needs of the market have meant the solution continues to satisfy, and in some cases exceed, the needs of our business.
“It is also reassuring to know, the solution has the potential to offer more functionality than we currently employ. For example, we have not activated the platform’s payment solution, but the option is there, ready and waiting, should we need it.
“I am confident we would not be able to run our business as effectively without Fisikal. The time we used to spend on administration and compiling analytics can now be spent on business development and learner liaison, driving acquisition and retention. Today, 70 per cent of our business is generated from returning learners, suggesting their experience, both on the training floor and via our peripheral services, is one they choose to repeat time and time again.