Partnering with Assurity, Les Mills co-created a design approach that combined rigorous customer empathy interviews with rapid prototyping. Over 18 months Assurity and Les Mills interviewed diverse customers across New Zealand, USA, UK and Europe. This approach helped the Les Mills team engage with people at different stages of their fitness journey, from novices to people navigating disabilities to athletes.
This empathy research was supplemented with quantitative choice-modelling, engaging 1600 respondents to substantiate insights and ensure they applied at scale. Across several sprints, the team used rapid prototyping to move from insights to customer testing at speed,
stress-testing features such as dynamic plans, wearable integration, nutrition and virtual coaching. This established a feedback loop to evolve features and objectively prioritise the development backlog using customer value – well in advance of having to invest in development.
It also highlighted three key aspects of the experience for the team to focus on. First, how working out on-demand amplified users’ thirst for personalisation and that the onboarding journey plays a pivotal role in setting the tone for the app experience. With Assurity, Les Mills redesigned onboarding, promoting a more holistic vision of fitness while capturing data specific to each user’s workout constraints. This helps fuel the app’s recommendation
engine keeping users engaged in the long term.
Establishing fitness routines and converting them to sustainable habits emerged as a universal challenge. As it transpired, workout plans are an effective antidote, except that in an ‘On Demand’ context users demand flexibility and control. Using this insight, the team evolved the workout plan feature, shifting from a prescriptive schedule to a customisable playlist, complete with suggested alternative workouts. This gave users the ability to adjust workouts and recovery days without compromising on progress.
By going into people’s homes, the team grew a deeper appreciation for the distractions and challenges that often lead to users deferring their workouts. In response, Assurity and Les Mills redesigned the search experience and overhauled the information hierarchy allowing customers to find a workout in a matter of seconds, not minutes.