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Google Apps helps FIT4MOM keep moms healthy on the go

Posted by Susan King Glosby, VP of Operations at FIT4MOM

Editor's note: In honor of Mother’s Day, our guest blogger is Susan King Glosby, VP of Operations at FIT4MOM, a company that offers fitness programs for moms at any stage of motherhood. See what other organizations that have gone Google have to say.

Being a mom to three boys is my favorite job, but helping moms is a close runner-up. That’s what I get to do as VP of Operations at FIT4MOM, a franchise that offers fitness classes to help mothers stay healthy and in shape. We’re not your typical gym session; we run pre-natal classes for pregnant women, stroller classes for new moms with their little ones in tow and workouts for mothers of all stages to get their pre-baby bodies back. Since launching in San Diego in 2001, we’ve grown to 275 franchises and 1,300 locations nationwide, helping moms from California to Cleveland stay in shape, meet other mothers and have fun with their kids.

We’re a mobile company. Our franchise owners are busy moms who don’t have time to sit in an office and answer emails. They’re teaching classes in the local park, picking up their kids from daycare and taking care of their families. Unfortunately, when we looked at our technology, we realized our email and collaboration system wasn’t doing our on-the-go business owners any favors. After looking at some underwhelming solutions tailored for franchise operations, we discovered Google Apps and knew we’d found the platform we needed to help us get our work done whenever and wherever we had the time.

Our only remaining concern was whether moving from our old system to Google Apps would be difficult without a dedicated in-house IT lead. Our worries disappeared as soon as we spoke with Lark IT, our Google Apps Reseller. Lark walked us through the process step-by-step, from the moment we decided to switch to Apps to the moment we successfully migrated all 300 of our business owners and corporate team members.

Apps has been a game changer for our 11-person corporate team. We store all our essential documents in a single shared folder on Drive, so everyone on the team has on-demand access to HR-related forms, time-off requests and contact information for our franchisees and partners. We also have a shared Google Calendar that’s always up-to-date with training sessions for new franchise owners and opening dates for new FIT4MOM locations. That way, we know all our moms are always in the loop. Google+ Hangouts have become increasingly ingrained in our daily routine, both for recurring events, like our corporate staff meetings, and impromptu one-on-one check-ins with franchise owners.

Our franchise owners are also over the moon about Apps because they finally have the tools to let them work efficiently and on their own schedules. With Gmail and Calendar on their phones, they have constant access to class schedules and can communicate easily with their instructors and the moms in their groups. No more time is wasted running home to check their laptops.

FIT4MOM isn’t just about fitness - it’s about bringing together active moms who want to be both healthy and part of a like-minded community. Between our Fit4Baby, Stroller Strides and Body Back classes, our employees and customers are getting fit and creating long-lasting friendships. And while we’re having fun on the playground, we know Google Apps is keeping the company running smoothly in the background.