Why No Waitlist?
Hands down, the question we receive most frequently from parents is whether or not we have a waitlist and the fact that we don’t quickly turns into the number one complaint made about La Petite Baleen. We’d like to explain:
On the technical side, our software can't properly support a waitlist with the way we book classes. Waitlists require a lot of manual work. There are no automatic notifications if class becomes available. Currently, at any given moment, we have a dozen or more staff working on class switches, or cancellations, which makes managing a waitlist difficult and would make almost every prime time class off limits because they would all be maxed out with students AND a full waitlist. A waitlist would gridlock our schedule even more than it currently is.
In general, there is limited software available for our industry. We have been with two of the best, and neither has been able to support a fair and fool-proof waitlist system. We hope to one day develop our own software that can address all of our needs, but until then we don’t anticipate having a waitlist. But know the reason is not because we want to make parents lives harder, we just don't think that it would truly provide better customer service!
Another problem is that while on a waitlist, the class level you’re waiting for, or level/age of your student, will change before class becomes available. Our system cannot notify customers if student no longer fits the class.
We also make a lot of internal changes to our schedule. Our Deck Support staff are constantly making adjustments to the classes on their shifts to ensure the best possible lessons for all students. Those switches would take priority over a waitlist and, again, would result in classes not being appropriate for students who may be waiting for an open spot at a particular time.
One of the best things about La Petite Baleen is that our classes are perpetual. We don’t operate in sessions because we believe in the importance of year-round swimming. In terms of a waitlist, that means there literally is no way to guarantee if someone would cancel or move. Many of our classes have the same students for years!
Our volume is something else to consider. We are proud of the fact that we have 10,000 students enrolled!
We spent a lot of time in 2016 trying to figure out if we could launch a waitlist, and we actually came pretty close. However, because of the above issues we knew we would run into, we decided it was best to not go forward.
Remember that our Swimformation staff are always available to answer questions or research the schedule for you if you would like a make a change to your child's class.