New in iOS version 1.3 of the Pool Dues Member Check In App!
You can now enter a special login (provided by us), to enable “Kiosk Mode”. This allows your neighborhood pool / tennis club to place an iPad at your front gate or desk to allow members to quickly browse their name and check-in using their personal PIN code.
About Kiosk Mode
When I first thought about creating a Member Check In app for my pool, the kiosk version was the first thing that came to mind. Replace the tattered old paper guestbook with a fancy iPad to better encourage people to sign in. And of course, tie it all into the billing backend, which our pool sorely needed (i.e., no paper checks).
As I began building the backend, adding features, and tinkering with the app, I started to realize I was more interested in the possibilities of the Member Check In app for individual users. Primarily for the social aspects. I loved the idea of being somewhere other than the pool and seeing who was there. And from that, other ideas started coming to me about the news section, sponsor section, and ways to better lead people to pay guests fees or shop.
But Kiosk-mode was always on the drawing board, and part of the fun of working with our Free-Trial Pools is hearing what they want, and a couple of them really expressed interest in getting this live. Cut to today’s launch!
Spin the wheel of members!
Kiosk mode is really pretty simple, as it’s main function is to check members in as quick as possible. Obviously, you don’t want people lingering at the front desk any longer than needed.
So, unlike the personal version, where pool members can check in with a quick status update, in Kiosk mode they simply enter their PIN. I even thought about removing the PIN option, but then some bored kid could come up to the device and just check in every member for fun and prompt emails to them to pay for guests.
Speaking of which, members can still note that they are bringing guests, and they can still toggle on a privacy option. This hides their status at the pool from other users of the Member Check In app (at my pool we joke it’s the Hide-From-Your-Spouse toggle). If a member toggles on that they’ve brought a guest, that is noted within the picker directory of the app. There are three notable icons…
– Member is checked in today
– Member brought guests
(paid) – Member brought guests and paid via PayPal
– Member was checked in, but has checked out (or gone private)
If a member toggles on that they’ve brought a guest, obviously you don’t want the kiosk itself to send them to a payment page. Again, you don’t want people lingering at the front gate. Plus, as a shared device, you don’t want people accidentally saving payment info on it.
Since the Kiosk already has member emails on file, we simply prompt the member to send themselves an email reminder which contains a link to pay via PayPal from your portal. This way they can go sit down, unpack, and pay when ready.
Keeping members honest
The picker directory of members gives everyone a kind of “bird’s eye view” of who’s currently at the club or was at the club. Including who brought guests. So, when a member checks in with guests, their name in the picker changes to ” + “. But if the member pays guest fees through your Pool Dues billing portal, their name changes to include ” + (paid)”.
Plus, the bottom of the Kiosk screen will show more details. Here are two examples….
“Member checked in at 3:47 and brought guests”
“Member checked in at 3:47. Paid $6 via PayPal for guests”
A little effort goes a long way…
Most pools already rely on members self-policing themselves when it comes to guest fees. If someone wants to be dishonest and bring 5 guests without paying, there’s usually very little to stop them. And sometimes people want to be honest, but they don’t have paper money for the “honor system” cash box. Lifeguards aren’t there to enforce guest fees or even check guest bracelets (they are paid to save lives and check chemical levels, not police member honesty). And other members aren’t going to confront each other about paying for their guests.
The Member Check In app in kiosk mode (or in individual user mode) simply adds a little transparency to the honor system. What will drive members to pay for their guests is two-fold…
1. Since the app shows members have paid via PayPal (and how much), this allows people to show off that they’ve actually paid. “See those 5 extra crazy boys in the pool, I did actually pay for them.”
2. Your pool looks high-tech as ****! Members don’t know that everything is still essentially run on the honor system. So if it appears your pool is trying to get money for guest fees, people are going to pay those guest fees. Especially if it’s easy (and cashless).
One final thought: The opposite applies to point 2. If you don’t make ANY effort to collect guest fees, no one is ever going to pay them.
June 7, 2018