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How Les Mills Simplified Logins For 140K Fitness Instructors

Auth0 provides seamless app access for all fitness instructors globally with 3-month setup time

About

Les Mills has been delivering life-changing fitness experiences for over 50 years. Now an international fitness brand, we mix music, motivation and movement for millions around the globe through our world-class fitness programs. Our mission is simple – to create a fitter planet.

Industry

Health/Fitness

Region

APAC

The explosion of in-home fitness in the era of videotapes and DVDs made New Zealand-based Les Mills into a global brand. They quickly became one of New Zealand’s biggest exporters based on the number of DVDs they sold in the early 2000s. Then technology changed everything, moving Les Mills’s business to a digital distribution model and making them a leader in digital media exports.

“The challenge,” explains Les Mills’s Head of Technology, Anthony Naulls, “is delivering the same quality life-changing fitness experiences to every user no matter where they are in the world.” To tackle global distribution, Les Mills turned to serverless products to achieve high global performance, but struggled to deliver a consistent experience across all functions. This includes authentication, which sits at the heart of delivering consistency and seamlessness for users.

“The challenge is delivering the same quality life-changing fitness experiences to every user no matter where they are in the world.”

Anthony NaullsHead of Technology

Untangling the Authentication Experience to Improve UX

A 140,000-strong army of instructors used to log in to Les Mills’ digital properties in different ways, based on whether they were accessing the fitness club, equipment products, and so on. Each required completely different authentication techniques and password combinations, creating friction for the users. Les Mills found that using Salesforce-based authentication in their natively built app didn’t provide adaptability for multiple authentication use cases, and they wanted to reduce complexity for themselves and their users, “We became difficult to do business with - we had to change,” Naulls explains.

To simplify the complexity, Les Mills honed in on the customer perspective. “We are looking at how our customers interact with us. We are now fully SaaS and beyond technical digital transformation, so we need to shift our focus to the customer experience,” says Naulls.

In selecting user-friendly authentication, Les Mills had already discovered Auth0’s functionality for use in a small project in a different business unit. But Les Mills wanted more, taking the full customer experience into account starting from login. Auth0 offered the ability to simplify authentication, customize login, and be able to take advantage of additional functionality, including authorization. 

They needed a unified solution that would enable backend products to pass attributes between them to enable, for example, more personalized end-user experiences. Auth0 could do all of these things, including both powering access to the Les Mills proprietary app, which natively houses all product information, content, workout programs, music, and digital rights on the user’s device, and enabling access to self-service portals that let users manage their accounts and make appointments and let business partners access products to which they subscribe.

“Auth0 was really easy to implement, with the project running for about three months.”

Anthony NaullsHead of Technology

Fast and Secure Implementation: Total Focus on Core Business

The Les Mills team says it would require significant effort from their own developers to create their own authentication solution, at the expense of focusing on product features. But according to Naulls, “Auth0 was really easy to implement, with the project running for about three months. And working with Professional Services helped shortcut the project as well as reveal functionality we didn’t even know we had.”

Leaving identity to external experts and not having to worry about maintaining or securing it ensured that developers were able to focus on the Les Mills mission: the continuous release of new fitness products and features to satisfy their core users and reach new ones. They could also be assured of security with Auth0. Naulls confirms, “I don't worry about security with Auth0. It’s one of the reasons why we outsourced identity in the first place. We want security to be foundational, not an afterthought, which is what Auth0 brings.”

“I don't worry about security with Auth0. It’s one of the reasons why we outsourced identity in the first place. We want security to be foundational, not an afterthought, which is what Auth0 brings.”

Anthony NaullsHead of Technology

Auth0 Flexibility the “Deciding Factor"

Auth0 has enabled a number of features that are important to Les Mills in enhancing the user experience, including multi-factor authentication (MFA) and Universal Login. But above all, Naulls cites flexibility as a deciding factor in selecting Auth0 for unifying their identity. “Auth0 can cater to all the different scenarios without needing a unique configuration for each product – that was a big deal, particularly now that people are heading back to gyms after COVID and more trainers are returning to the platform,” he says. “We just launched and have work to do around our apps, and Auth0 is doing the job we’ve asked it to do, freeing us up to focus on app delivery rather than identity.”

“We just launched and have work to do around our apps, and Auth0 is doing the job we’ve asked it to do, freeing us up to focus on app delivery rather than identity.”

Anthony NaullsHead of Technology

About Auth0

Auth0, a product unit within Okta, takes a modern approach to identity and enables organizations to provide secure access to any application, for any user. The Auth0 Identity Platform is highly customizable, and is as simple as development teams want, and as flexible as they need. Safeguarding billions of login transactions each month, Auth0 delivers convenience, privacy, and security so customers can focus on innovation. For more information, visit https://auth0.com.

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