The social fitness company
In 2006, Tom Marien was completing pre-season rugby training while working in a gym. Going from the sociable, team atmosphere at the rugby club to the relative silence of people working out at the gym – he started notice how social training could actually impact progress. Owner, Tom Marien, explains:
“People make more fitness gains when they train in groups and outdoors, compared to when they’re isolated at the gym with headphones in, listening to music or watching TV. I wanted to create something that moved away from that gym concept and embraced that sports club style fitness training.”
From here, One Element was born. Originally for ex rugby players, One Element now has over 200 members from all kinds of backgrounds.
“As the company has grown, we have made a conscious effort to stick to that sports club mentality – we train outside, in parks and host lots of socials, from parties to ski trips.”
Moving to GoCardless
Before GoCardless, One Element used standing orders to process payments. While this worked well at first, the admin burden quickly became unscalable, particularly when they exceeded 200 members.
“Standing orders were okay at first, very cheap but also very manual and admin heavy. That’s okay when you only have a handful of members but as we grew it just became unmanageable – it was taking one person two or three full weeks just to process payments and manage memberships.”
Tom looked for different payment options and discovered Direct Debit and tried out a more traditional provider. However, the sign-up process was paper-based and admin heavy, which meant managing payments was still an issue.
“We needed something online, something that gave us a clear view of our members and who was paying when, that’s when we found GoCardless.”
One Element now uses GoCardless to manage both membership and franchise payments. “Being able to manage franchise payments with Direct Debit as well is a real bonus for us, it’s great being able to do this from one provider.”
Managing memberships on the go
The nature of One Element and sports club fitness means that training is held outside at different locations. Without central gym spaces, it is crucial for Tom to have visibility over all memberships and payments.
Tom discovered he could integrate GoCardless payments with membership management provider, TeamUp, which would allow him to manage memberships and payments in one place.
We don’t have the luxury of membership cards, or scanning people in. When we discovered the TeamUp integration, it was brilliant. So easy to set up and very quickly, we had full visibility over memberships, payments, refunds, upgrades, everything.”
Being able to manage all aspects of the business, easily in one place significantly reduced the amount of admin time.
“GoCardless for TeamUp has been a game changer for us. Admin that used to take two to three full weeks a month now takes just 1 or 2 hours a week,” he adds.
One Element has found using the GoCardless for TeamUp integration has made for a better experience for its members. Particularly after moving to the GoCardless Pro package, and adding the company name to members’ bank statements.
“Our members don’t have queries about payments, which is great. It’s easy for them and they know their payments are secure,” says Tom.
Tom and his team have also found that their cash flow has improved because they can receive payments more regularly. Tom explains:
“With our previous provider, we’d only received payments once every two weeks. With GoCardless it’s much more flexible and that makes a big difference for us.”
On recommending GoCardless for TeamUp, Tom says:
“It’s a no brainer, you have to do it to manage memberships and recurring payments efficiently. It saves you time, it’s secure and so simple to use.”