Four Tips on Finding Great Gym Employees

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  • Four Tips on Finding Great Gym Employees

How can you find good employees for your gym? Individuals who express your values and create an environment in which members will thrive? It’s never an easy task, but we’ve brainstormed multiple ways you can scout and hire good people. These ideas are culled from our discussions with other gym owners, as well our own experiences in the job market.

Four tips to finding good gym employees

1.     Recruit from your membership

The people who visit your gym already love it. Why not bring them in on the action? We’ve spoken with more than one gym owner who found particular members joyful, committed, and enthusiastic. Their energy infectious, they frequently turn out to be excellent employees. 

2.     Scout local colleges for interns

College students studying Sports Management, Exercise Science or even Kinesiology need hands-on experience. Interning at a gym gives them a real-world insight into the business side of their field. Many companies find college students’ current skills and energy a good fit for social media outreach efforts, technology upgrades, or community promotions. Contact the college’s individual departments to ask about how they promote and advertise internship positions. Don’t think you can get away with not paying, though. Most internships are paid now. If you choose not to pay, the U.S. Department of Labor “stipulates that unpaid interns should have job responsibilities that are clearly connected to their program of study,” according to an Indeed Career Guide article. 

3.     Promote through social media

Encourage social media fans to check out your webpage and apply online. You might receive a few flaky responses, but a gem may show up, too. Request a cover letter. Kelly Morgan, owner of MorGainz Fitness in Pennsylvania, discovered a favorite employee through a heartfelt cover letter that showed the individual had researched her gym, reviewed social media and expressed a sincere interest in growing the brand. 

4. Reach out to nonprofits that train underserved populations

Goodwill Industries International, Inc. is one of the best known. Comprising some 150     locally operated organizations, Goodwill focuses on training individuals who face barriers to employment. These obstacles may include physical or mental challenges, employment gaps or judicial involvement. Goodwill provides these individuals with the tools they need to work within the private or public sectors, from basic job skills such as time management to more sophisticated assistance, including resume development and interviewing skills. Either way, you’re bringing on a person who wants to work — what         better place to start?

You’re not imagining it – it’s still tough to find gym employees

According to a U.S. Chamber of Commerce June 9, 2023 employment policy article, there are 9.9 million job openings in the U.S., but only 5.8 million unemployed workers. Labor participation rate is 62.6%, down from 63.4% in February 2020. Even if every one of these unemployed individuals took a job, we’d still show more than 4 million open jobs. 

As an employer, you’re competing with a systemic and complicated problem. Employees tell the U.S. Chamber researchers they left to take care of family members, address their own personal ill health, or deal with concerns about low pay or the need to acquire new skills.  

On a deeper level, employers are also fighting a generous government benefits program, and a societal shift towards quitting jobs in search of fulfilling personal life goals. Indeed, even our gig workforce discourages traditional employment, as millions of individuals opt for side hustles, delivering food, rides, and even laundry.

How can a gym compete for employees?

Think differently. One national home improvement company actively recruits retirees and others who prefer not to work full time. They know a part-time employee is a happy one and, probably, a more profitable asset as well. 

One of our Insight customers regularly barters monthly gym membership fees for odd jobs around his Virginia-based gym. A member may not want to work full time or even a regular part-time gig, but they may be willing to pick up temporary work in return for a couple of months’ fees off the membership. It’s not his ideal, but it’s working for now. 

Finally, there is another option — minimize employees overall. Gym Insight’s Digital Keytags allow members to sign up through your website or social media page, download an app, open a QR code and enter the gym without ever meeting an employee. Many, many of our health club owners have expanded to 24/7 access while decreasing employees. It’s a streamlined system that nearly eliminates customer entry fraud and lowers manpower involved with signing up new members. 

Gym Insight

Thank you again for reading our weekly blog. We enjoy helping our business owners expand and grow their companies through offering one of the easiest-to-use gym management software systems on the market. Affordable and designed to make it simple for you to run a highly successful fitness center, Gym Insight’s software management system is a great choice for new club owners, existing club owners, and personal trainers. Call us at 1-855-FOR-GYMS and ask for Anthony or Natalie, or connect with us through social media, including our Gym Owner’s Podcast on YouTube.