The Benefits of a Child Check-In System for Fitness Facilities
Offering child care to your members is a great service and goes a long way in creating loyalty. There are also risks and liabilities when caring for children at a facility. A children’s check-in system can help mitigate those risks and provides many benefits as well, such as improving child safety, creating a positive parent experience, and helping to efficiently manage the kids’ area.
Improving Child Safety
When parents leave their children with you, they are entrusting you with their safety and security. That’s not an easy thing to do. Parents want to know the well-being of their children is your top priority. The more comfortable they are, the more likely they are to keep coming back. Parents may prefer your facility, but if their children aren’t happy, or they have any doubts about the quality of care or safety, those elements could negatively affect their decision to become a member.
Using an electronic check-in process makes a definitive statement right away that child safety is extremely important to your organization. The multiple security features in a check-in system, like KidCheck, immediately create parent peace-of-mind. These include lists (designated by the parents) of who is and isn’t authorized to pick children up, child allergy warnings and medical alerts, document management options, and the ability to quickly and easily locate and contact parents directly through the system. These elements can be especially helpful in today’s environment and diverse family situations.
Reduce Risk and Liability
These multiple security features not only make your facility look good, they also help reduce risk and liability. Utilizing a secure children’s check-in system adds layers of protection for the children, your staff, and your organization. Matching unique security codes on parent and child labels and immediate staff access to authorized guardian lists, help ensure only those authorized can check children out of the childcare area. Knowing about allergy or medical concerns puts you a step ahead to prevent possible incidents. Electronic document management links key documents, such as waivers or incident reports, directly to the associated child for easy record retention. Parent location information and the ability to text from within the check-in system enable quick contact with parents in case of emergency. All these items help mitigate some of the risk inherent with having a children’s center as part of your organization.
Check with your insurance company as well. Some offer reduced rates or credits for facilities utilizing a children’s check-in system due to the benefits and added security measures it provides.
Positive Parent Experience
First impressions are important and difficult to overcome if they’re not positive. Most of us evaluate people, organizations, and facilities by what they offer and how they conduct themselves. This leads to both conscious and unconscious judgements about security, cleanliness, and professionalism based on what they first see and experience.
By having a secure children’s check-in system you’re making a statement about your commitment to being efficient, organized, safe, and focused on the children in your care. This makes a powerful first impression, creates parent peace-of-mind and helps foster a strong relationship with your member families. That in turn drives increased loyalty and member retention.
Efficient Children’s Area Management
Fast, Simple, Easy
A children’s check-in system makes check-in a breeze for everyone involved. It’s simple, fast and secure. It reduces check-in time, parents know it’s secure, and they are impressed you’ve taken steps to streamline the process. Plus, with parent maintained accounts, parents input pertinent family member and contact data saving data entry time and helping ensure contact information is correct and up-to-date.
Multiple check-in options are available offering flexibility to best meet your facility’s needs. These include check-in computer stations, mobile check-in options with tablet devices, and Express Check-In where parents can check children in using their own smartphone.
Access Child Information
All the information you need is right at your fingertips, providing pertinent details on each child to give the highest level of care. Specific child details may include a recent separation or divorce of the parents, current restraining order, or life threatening allergy or medical need. Other information includes the child’s birthday and if they are new to your center.
Easy Parent Communication
Consistent communication between parents, volunteers, and staff can be difficult if the tasks have to been done manually. Multiple communication tools are available with children’s check-in software such as individual and broadcast text, email, check-in notes, and parent notifications.
Parents can be texted right from the system, no need for an employee to use their personal cell phone or run around the facility looking for a parent. Text options include individual in case of emergency or to provide a quick child update, or broadcast to inform a group of parents simultaneously. Email allows for fast and easy communication of important information such as upcoming events and can be sent to all the families, a subset based on your designated criteria, or an individual. No need to find a list and manually type in emails, it’s available within the system. Parent check-in notes allow parents, right at check-in, to add any comments or special instructions they want your staff to be aware of for that particular day. Perhaps their child is grumpy, teething, or simply tired. The note will show up on the child’s name badge so all personnel in the kids area will be aware. Another great tool designed for your center is the check-in notification feature. Add a note to share pertinent information that will be prominently displayed on the check-in screen for parents to see when they check children in. You can use this to communicate with all parents or just notify certain individuals.
Using a manual system makes capturing, storing, and reporting important data difficult and cumbersome; thus affecting customer service, budget, and the overall member experience.
Electronic systems include at-a-glance general and custom reports that automatically gather and extrapolate key kids’ club data such as family contact information, check-in logs, attendance and ratio tracking, and birthdays. With access to these reports, you can better understand what’s going on in your childcare center; more effectively follow up with members, save time, increase efficiency, and analyze trends.
Good for You, Members and Kids
While a pen and paper process, or add-on check-in component from a management system, may seem good enough, a children’s check-in system can take your facility to the next level and provide many benefits. You look good, children are safer, and parents are happy – all helping to drive your business.
To learn more about the benefits of using secure children’s check-in and improving child safety, sign up on the KidCheck blog or join our growing community on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or Pinterest.