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#ALFANB16 Collage (high)2016 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast#ALFANB16

The 5th Annual ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast (#ALFANB16) was conducted on Friday 29 April 2016 in conjunction with the Fitness & Health Expo and sponsored by MYZONE and Technogym.

Community Leisure Facility Managers and industry personnel from across Australia came together to network, share experiences and develop lasting relationships, whist learning from industry experts.

Those in attendance were educated, inspired and entertained by the keynote speakers and event sponsor presentations as they each gave their take on “Leisure Facilities of the Future”.

The speakers highlighted some of the current trends within the Fitness and Health industry, as well as some of the challenges faced by Facility Managers and how preparing for the future, through adaptation and innovation will ensure community leisure facilities continue to provide outstanding aquatic and recreation experiences into the future within this highly competitive industry.

Mike Beeney - MYZONEMike Beeney, Direct Asia Pacific – MYZONE kicked off the presentations by providing insights into the latest fitness industry market trends in the wearable technology space. Mike explained how wearables can be both a threat and an opportunity for operators and provided examples of the negative impact that has happened to some businesses who have not embraced this technology.

Mark Bentwitch - TechnogymMark Bentwitch, Digital Solutions Manager Technogym Australia discussed fitness trends of the future and how Technogym’s innovative solutions and social projects are changing the face of the industry. Mark’s presentation generated a lot of discussion around the research value of the data being collected and how this data (privacy issues aside) may be the missing link we have been looking for to demonstrate the true value of our industry.

Mark Collins - Glen Eira City CouncilMark Collins, Leisure Services Manager, Glen Eira City Council presented on‘Strategies for Maximising Income’. He explained how the future is here and now, with 24 hour clubs and specialist niche providers making it more difficult than ever for large leisure facilities to operate successfully and suggested that this trend will continue. Mark also stressed the ongoing importance of strategic planning in your facility, providing examples of how you can maximise income opportunities for operators, as well as potential new business models for consideration.

Nix Cox - Belgravia LeisureNick Cox, CEO Belgravia Leisure fresh back from IHRSA rounded off the presentations by providing insights into the future of Leisure Facilities, sharing first hand experiences, industry research, case studies and a bit of “I reckon” on what facility managers need to be doing to stay ahead of the competition. Nick shared practical advice and strategies on how to achieve the best return on investment, whilst meeting consumer expectations through programming, equipment and technology integration

The various case studies and examples provided by each of the speakers throughout their presentations demonstrated how facilities have kept up with the needs of their communities, adapting and transforming their operations to improve member experiences and achieve a healthier bottom line.

You can view all the Presentations from #ALFANB16: 2016 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast Presentations


Wrap up Post Image2015 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast#ALFANB15

Derren Jones, Head of Product Innovation at Medibank, provided an overview of Medibank’s #GymBetter program on 10 April at the ALFA Networking Breakfast 2015, sponsored by Links Modular Solutions.

As Australia’s largest health insurer, Medibank has for the past 18 months been creating a movement with its Generation Better message. #GenBetter was born out of the desire to support people when they have a desire to be healthier or fitter. Thousands of Australians have got involved by making pledges via social media and in stores, so Medibank saw the needed to create something to help them realise their goals.

Derren explained that “Medibank is a Health Company, not just a Health Insurer, wanting to effect Australian lives in a positive way”.

Through significant market research Medibank found that many of their customers were keen to use gym facilities, but the main barriers preventing people from going were largely financial, notably contracts and the cost of gym memberships. Medibank wanted to create a program that enabled an environment that facilitates “fitness that fits your lifestyle”, with the overall aim of getting more people exercising.

#GymBetter Freedom to choose
Medibank saw that it could play a role by working with partners to come up with a program and product that removes those perceived barriers to get people off the couch and into the gym to help them start living a more active life, so Medibank built #GymBetter.

Medibank #GymBetter Program
The #GymBetter campaign does not target the regular gym goer, but rather those that are not already accessing gyms because of these perceived barriers.

#GymBetter Identifying Segments in Fitness
Rather than create a program similar to those offered elsewhere, like discounts on memberships, the #GymBetter program aimed to offer value over an above what you could get elsewhere.

Medibank is disrupting the industry by providing a different membership model option for accessing gyms.

With the #GymBetter campaign it costs $8.50 to visit the gym for up to eight visits per month. After your eighth visit you can continue to go to the gym for free for the rest of the month. That means you would pay a maximum of $68 a month on the #GymBetter program, which is comparable to the cost of an average gym membership.

Gym’s receive an income from Medibank for each person that is accessing their gym via the #GymBetter program.

#GymBetter provides the “freedom to choose” how and where people can access gyms across Australia. #GymBetter members can visit multiple facilities within their maximum payment threshold each month. There are currently over 500 gyms that people can access on the program, all for the same price.

What Medibank are now finding is that people who previously weren’t going to the gym due to these perceived barriers are now going to the gym 10 times a month in some cases. This is because the program program has, without planning it to be this way, created an element of gamification, with people aiming to get their free sessions by going to the gym more than 8 times a month.

Approximately 10-15% of people on the program are achieving the free visits each month.

Medibank launched #GymBetter on 1 January 2015, with a target of getting 20,000 people involved in the program within the first 12 months and they hit that program on week 5. There is currently over 30,000 people using #GymBetter, with those numbers growing by the hundreds on a daily basis.

When questioned, Derren advised that post launch research indicates that approximately 20% of the people on the #GymBetter program were gym members prior to joining this program, however most of those not using their memberships.

Interestingly, even though you can visit multiple gyms using the #GymBetter program, most people are choosing to stick with one. However, there are a lot of people that are using the #GymBetter program initially to trial several gyms before settling on the one that suits them best.

Where there is a differentiated offering from the gym directly, some people choose to join the gym directly after being introduced to the gym initially via the #GymBetter program. Medibank is happy for this to occur, as it helps to drive their overall outcomes of the program, which is for a healthier population.

What Next For The Medibank GymBetter Program?
The program has been very successful and Medibank is now looking at what they will do next.

The gym partners of Goodlife, Anytime Fitness and Fitness First were selected as the initial partners so that Medibank could get the product to market quickly. However, Medibank’s goal is not to limit this program as they wish to make this program as accessible as possible to all.

Derren advised that #GymBetter will likely evolve into a fitness ecosystem with different offerings in there such as personal training, swimming, etc that will incentivise people to set and achieve health goals.

This provides an opportunity for community leisure facilities and independent gyms.

It also is likely that Medibank will produce a study on the outcomes of this program sometime in the future.

You can view all the presentations from #ALFANB15 here: 2015 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast Presentations

Networking Breakfast2014 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast #ALFANB14

The ALFA Networking Breakfast (#ALFANB14) was conducted on Friday 4 April 2013 in conjunction with the Australian Health & Fitness Expo and sponsored by Links Modular Solutions and The Retention People.

Community Leisure Facility Managers from across Australia came together to network, share experiences and develop lasting relationships, whist learning from industry experts. The seventy-five people in attendance participated in an interactive panel session on current trends within the Fitness & Health industry and what Community Leisure Facility Manager’s need to do to remain ahead of the curve in this highly competitive industry.

Nada Delich, YMCA Area Manager, facilitated the panel discussion, which highlighted various case studies on how facilities have kept up with the needs of their community, by adapting and transforming their operations to improve member experiences and achieve a healthier bottom line.

Celeste Kirby-Brown, Director of Sales, Marketing and Relationships at Ezypay, provided insights into the latest fitness industry market trends as captured through their annual Fitness Industry Survey.

Shane Byrne, Co-founder of FitnFast Gyms and Owner of Fitness Business Experts, provided insights into the private health club sector, demonstrating how FitnFast Gyms successfully delivered a new concept and model to the Australian Fitness Industry.

Kara Monaghan, Centre Manager at Leisurelink Geelong, presented a case study on how community leisure facilities such as Leisurelink are staying ahead of the curve in this highly competitive industry.

Simon Hall, Marketing Manager at Blue Fitness, provided insights into how innovative equipment and programming can provide your facility with a competitive edge.

Download a copy of the ALFANB14 Presentations here.

You can see images from ALFANB14 here and photos from the Australian Health & Fitness Expo here.

ALFA-Networking-Breakfast-2013-300x3002013 ALFA Facility Manager’s Networking Breakfast 

ALFA conducted a networking breakfast on Friday 19 April 2013 in conjunction with the Australian Fitness and Health Expo at the Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre in Darling Harbour.

Simon Hall (Blue Fitness) and Loren Bartley (ALFA & Impactiv8) gave an engaging presentation on “Social Media For Leisure Facility Managers”. They shared examples of how leisure facilities can use social media to engage with current members, acquire new members and engage with their wider community. A copy of the presentation can be downloaded below:

Social Media For Leisure Facility Managers

Michaela Mania from Links Modular Solutions also provided a short education session on “Embracing Technology in your Facility”. Michaela discussed generational changes and views of customer service and how entrance control systems are adapting as a result. This session included case studies of how Ascot Vale Leisure Centre and Glen Eira Sports and Aquatic Centre have implemented RFID and turnstiles to better serve their customers, enabling these centres to redirect staffing resources to other areas of the centre.

You can download a copy of Michaela’s presentation on Embracing Technology In Your Facility presentation here: Embracing Technology in your Facility.

2012 Networking Event Delegates2012 ALFA Professional Development & Networking Event 

Below are the presentations from the 2012 ALFA Professional Development and Networking Event, held in conjunction with SPLASH! at Jupiters on the Gold Coast on 24 July 2012.

Industry Presentations:

Local Government Procurement Process – Sharon Elkin
Health Promotion – Ken Phillips
Economic Impact of Sport & Recreation Facilities on Local Communities – Lorette Roberts
Model For Active Ageing – Gary Penfold
Leisure Facilities Using Social Media – Loren Bartley

Commercial Supplier Presentations:

Heliocol for more information visit: www.heliocol.com.au
QIS Solarwise for more information visit: www.solarwise.com.au
Dolphin/Maytronics for more information visit: www.maytronics.com.au
Sunbather for more information visit: www.sunbather.com.au
Tim Batt Water Solutions for more information email: timtbws@bigpond.com
Solar Splash/Waterlinx for more information visit: www.solarsplash.com.au
International Quadratics for more information visit: www.interquad.com.au
Supreme Heating for more information visit: www.supremeheating.com.au
THS Commercial Pool Specialist for more information visit: www.trisley.com.au
Zelbrite  for more information visit: www.zelbrite.com