Consumers and researchers might only be starting to realize the full benefits of digital-first healthcare experiences. However, for coaches, the benefits of incorporating technology into practice have been well-understood for some time.
Without the outdated regulations surrounding clinical practice, forward-thinking coaches have been free for many years to use digital tools like email, video calls, online platforms, and coaching apps to improve client outcomes and expand their businesses. And a recent survey from the International Coaching Federation (ICF) shows that the majority of practitioners use digital coaching tools in their practice.
As a result, coaching apps—the technologically driven successors of traditional coaching methods—have risen to prominence as indispensable tools for the modern practitioner.
There are some truly remarkable coaching software products on the market today. But for many coaches, the sheer volume of choice makes it near on impossible to decide which option is best both for themselves and their clients
To help you make the right decision, we’re going to cover everything you need to know about coaching apps in this article.
What are Coaching Apps?
Coaching apps synthesize cutting-edge technology with the science of personal growth and development.
These apps cover a range of digital coaching tools, including those for individuals, groups, and businesses.
Coaching software typically includes tools for online learning, such as resource creation features, online courses, and automated coaching programs. It also can help streamline back-office tasks, such as note-taking and administrative tasks.
The best coaching apps serve as virtual meeting places where certified coaches and their clients can interact and collaboratively work toward personal and professional aspirations.
The Expansions Library in the Quenza coaching app has more than 250 ready-to-use (yet fully customizable) worksheets, questionnaires, tools, forms, and assessments.
Can Coaching Apps Boost Your Practice?
High-quality coaching apps provide several benefits to coaches and clients.
For coaches, a good app can allow you to:
- Provide online coaching to clients outside of your immediate geographic location
- Diversify your service offering, such as creating online courses
- Enable you to expand your business, without the need for office space (by delivering online group coaching or setting up a virtual group practice)
Watch the video below for a demonstration of how Quenza Organizations allows for faster, simpler, and more effective collaboration with fellow professionals.
For clients, coaching apps make it possible to:
- Work with a specialized coach from anywhere in the world
- Choose the coaching method that works best for you (individual, group, or self-led learning or choosing from a range of coaching methodologies)
- Receive affordable input between sessions, through prompts, homework, and reminders
It’s worth bearing in mind a word of caution that apps are not a magic wand and nor do they fix problems on behalf of people. Everyone still has to do the internal personal work if they truly want to change and gain a wiser approach to life.
To give you an example, many coachees enter coaching completely demoralized because they haven’t been able to follow their app’s reminders. They feel they have failed when in fact the app has failed them.
Rewiring our minds for change takes time but more importantly, it takes self-reflection and personal inquiry. The best apps include this but many apps don’t provide enough of this kind of support.
So, as a coach, you can promote yourself as the inquirer or “partner in change”, so to speak. The app is simply a tool but without your poignant questions and co-discovery with your clients, clients can go down the path of giving up. In short, the best apps create a partnership between you, your client and the technology.
This is also why at Quenza, we firmly believe in the power of our library of exercises and worksheets. These can be completed at any time during the day when specific situations come up. That’s how adult learning happens. As a coach, you’ll also be there by their side, virtually.
Apps for Coaching Niches
The task of choosing between the various apps for coaching is made more difficult by the fact there is “no one-size-fits-all” approach to coaching software.
Depending on the area of practice, the best app for coaches in, for example, life coaching or business coaching might differ significantly.
Furthermore, each coach (and their clients) have different needs. So what works for one practitioner might not be suitable for another.
To give you an idea of the diversity in online coaching apps, we’ll detail some of the groups below.
Life Coaching Apps
Nestled within this category are apps that holistically nurture personal development, providing users with the tools to overcome challenges, discover their passions, and clarify their life’s direction.
Goal-setting tools, progress-tracking capability, and self-reflection tools are must-have features in apps for life coaching.
Health Coaching Apps
Wellness and health coaching apps hone in on aspects like physical fitness, nutrition, mindset, and overall well-being. Overall, digital health coaching has a good evidence base for being effective in everything from managing diabetes, to weight loss, fitness, and lifestyle change.
With personalized fitness regimens and diet-tracking tools, health coaching apps can transform smartphones into a device that actually improves health, rather than detracts from it.
MyFitnessPal is an example of a health coaching app that many coaches use to help clients achieve fitness and nutrition goals.
Executive Coaching Apps
Catering to the needs of corporate professionals in management and leadership roles, executive coaching apps function as platforms for sharpening managerial acumen, decision-making ability, and emotional intelligence.
By equipping leaders with strategies tailored to the complexities of the modern corporate realm, these apps can foster effective leadership in challenging environments.
MasterCoach is one of the few purpose-built apps designed specifically for executives.
Career Coaching Apps
In today’s competitive job market, employees of all experience and skill levels are turning to career coaching apps to help them navigate career exploration and advancement.
From nurturing self-awareness to mapping out career trajectories and identifying potential areas of skill growth, these apps help coaches guide clients to building a more fulfilling and rewarding work life.
Quenza has dozens of career coaching tools you can start using right away, by signing up now for a full-access 1-month trial for only $1.
Business Coaching Apps
Entrepreneurs, business owners, and managers frequently utilize business coaching apps.
Business coaching is a very diverse field. So apps in this area can cover topics as broad as project management, marketing strategies, financial planning, and human resources. These apps empower business leaders to steer their endeavors toward profitability and innovation.
Leadership Coaching Apps
Tailored to the developmental needs of growing leaders, leadership coaching apps help coaches guide clients through the process of becoming more effective and influential leaders.
Common skills targeted include communication, managing teams, visionary thinking, and self-care strategies. Although, again, the real power of a coach lies in supporting clients to make sense of how they are interacting with the apps, as well as life. Only then can real sustained change start.
11 Key Features of Coaching Apps
You might not need every one of these features. But the list below gives a good overview of the most common features coaching apps incorporate.
Being familiar with these will help you choose apps for coaching that do what you require, without including unnecessary features that usually come at an extra cost.
In addition, sometimes you don’t know what features you need until you see them. So get familiar with this list to boost your practice and reduce your stress.
- Communication Tools – Messaging, chat, and video calls are must-have features of any good coaching app.
- Assessment Capabilities – Choose an app that has in-built assessments or lets you import your own.
- Note-Taking Features – Don’t make writing notes more difficult than it needs to be. Choose an app that streamlines writing, storing, and sharing client notes.
- Management Functions – Client portals, coach profiles, and organizational details can make scaling your practice much easier.
- Client Engagement Tools – Keeping clients engaged between sessions with resources, homework, and inspirational quotes can be a powerful way to improve outcomes.
- User-Friendly Interface – Features don’t mean anything if the coach and client have difficulty using the app. Choose a coaching app that’s intuitive and easy to use.
- 3rd Party Integration – You’ll likely still use other software in your coaching practice, so check how well coaching apps you’re considering purchasing will integrate with your other digital workflow products.
- Content and Resource Sharing – A good coaching platform app can give your resource library a huge boost in saving time. You can of course keep building on it with your own creativity and research but either way, the best apps give you a starting point. You can even find apps like Quenza that enable you to automate much of the sharing process with your clients
- Scheduling Functions – In this day and age, booking shouldn’t be something that takes up a lot of time. Good coaching apps allow practitioners and clients to seamlessly make and reschedule appointments.
- Billing and Invoicing – While billing for coaches typically isn’t as complicated as medical billing, it might save you considerable time and stress if a coaching app can handle the financial side of practice for you.
- Advanced Security – To be on the safe side, it’s recommended that coaches follow the same client confidentiality and data security processes as healthcare professionals.
5 Best Coaching Apps
While it’s true there is no one best online coaching app for everyone, there are some options that stand out against the rest.
The coaching software products listed below have been chosen because in our opinion—and that of many satisfied customers—they represent the best balance between cost, features, ease of use, and overall functionality.
|Practice can be used for any client-based business, but its intuitive setup and ease of use make it a favorite among coaches.|
Some of the coaching-specific features of Practice include:
Automated reminders (for clients and coaches) A client portal where you can chat and share resourcesFile storage for notes, forms, and contractsPayment and invoicing functionalityScheduling features
|Good For||Individual coaching. Client-based professionals. Therapists. Practitioners who need billing features.|
|Designed by coaches, for coaches, Quenza offers unparalleled functionality and versatility for practitioners of all types.|
The White Label features throughout the Quenza app enable you to quickly build custom content and coaching tools under your own brand. With our drag-and-drop Activity Builder, you can choose any resource from our extensive library of assessments, forms, and activities, then adapt it to your exact needs.
HIPAA-compliant private and group chatGroup coaching featuresCustomizable science-based templates and tools (Expansions)Client notifications and remindersSecure file storage and sharingNote-taking and documentation toolsOrganizational features to collaborate with a team
|Good For||Individual and group coaching. Client engagement. Life coaching. Mental health coaching. Building online courses. Online coaching and counseling.|
|Nudge Coach is a client management system and one of the best online coaching apps for coaches. The program helps track client progress and improve accountability and goal setting.|
With a focus on the personal aspects of coaching, Nudge Coach offers client-management-centered features, such as:
Private, direct, and instant client messaging capabilitiesAdvance reminders – monthly, weekly, and dailyGroup messaging functionalityTrackers and progress monitoring for client goals
|Good For||Team development. Individual Coaching. Client interactions. Personal development. Health coaching.|
|More Info||Nudge App|
|As an app dedicated entirely to coaching, CoachAccountable has client engagement and accountability built into all of its features.|
Some standout features of CoachAccountable include:
Accessible from any web-connected deviceAppointment scheduling that syncs with your calendarCoaching programs can be purchased within the appTools to engage clients between sessionsA teams feature to collaborate with other professionals
|Good For||Life coaches. Accountability coaches. Delivering automated care. Practitioners needing in-built sales and billing functionality.|
|With automated practice management software systems like Vcita, coaches can handle appointment scheduling and customer relationship management, all from a single dashboard. The goal of Vcita is to streamline the administrative side of coaching. So it includes handy features like:Appointment schedulingInvoicing and billingPayment processingNote-taking and documentation toolsCustomizable marketing forms|
|Good For||Business owners. Coaches and counselors. Practice management. Billing. Appointment scheduling|
Case Study: Quenza
Quenza’s Dashboard is your one-stop shop for everything you need to run your coaching business from any device.
From the Dashboard, you can:
- Create PDF resources, handouts, and forms for your clients to inform them on important topics. Plus streamline administrative tasks, like onboarding coaching clients.
- Run online coaching groups for working with several clients at once, utilizing our unique Quenza Groups feature.
Remember, you can get access to all the features on the Quenza app, including Quenza Groups right now, by signing up for a full-access 1-month trial for only $1.
- Adapt and utilize pre-made tools, like The Wheel of Life, to assess your clients on any number of variables, like personality, self-confidence, character traits, strengths, and weaknesses.
- Create an online course on your area of expertise to deliver your content to a larger group of clients at once.
- Form multiple Pathways of resources and activities tailored to the different issues and challenges your clients face.
- Send your clients an evaluation or feedback form to keep an eye on your own coaching performance and identify areas for improvement.
If you want to stay relevant and effective in the rapidly changing world of coaching, it’s a must to utilize high-quality coaching apps.
The best coaching apps come with a wide range of features that benefit both clients and coaches.
For coaches, software can allow you to work online with clients all over the world. It also helps to reduce the time you spend on administrative tasks. And unlocks a range of new services to add to your repertoire, like group coaching and online courses.
For clients, coaching apps give the flexibility to get support with what you want, when you want, from whom you want, in your preferred format. Clients can choose between individual and group coaching, online or in-person, and coach-led vs. client-led learning.
As a coach, your biggest challenge will be choosing the coaching app that best suits the needs of you and your clients.
While there are other options on the market, a flexible, adaptable, and full-featured coaching app like Quenza is the ideal choice for most practitioners.
To try it out today, by signing up for a full-access 1-month trial for only $1.
Frequently Asked Questions
No. You don’t need an app to practice as a coach. Some coaches manage just fine only seeing clients in person or utilizing phone/video calls for virtual appointments. However, many modern customers now expect a level of digital involvement in coaching and healthcare, so you may limit your client base by not using digital tools.
Most coaches find that in time, coaching apps pay for themselves (and then some). Being able to work with clients all over the world, spending less time on non-billable admin time, creating passive income streams (like online courses), and diversifying your service offering are the main ways to recoup your investment in a coaching app.
This really depends on what app you choose. Some will allow you to customize many aspects of the app, such as adding your own branding, adjusting tools and forms to suit your needs, and integrating your own resources. However, others are quite rigid in their use. With the range of choices in the market today, there really is no reason to choose an app that isn’t highly customizable.
If you’ve got lots of spare time or work in a very niche area, you might want to create your own resources. But keep in mind that the best coaching apps will only utilize high-quality, science-based tools. A good app will also allow you to customize ready-made tools and worksheets. This means you can save a considerable amount of time on resource development, while still delivering a high standard of care.
- ^ Argyres, D., Hung, A., Kennedy, K., Pérez, L., & Tolub, G. (2022, July 26). Digital health: An opportunity to advance health equity. McKinsey & Company. https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/life-sciences/our-insights/digital-health-an-opportunity-to-advance-health-equity.
- ^ Shrake, L. (2022, August 4). Three Takeaways on the Coaching Industry’s Recovery from the Pandemic - International Coaching Federation. International Coaching Federation. https://coachingfederation.org/blog/industry-recovery-from-pandemic.
- ^ Azelton, K.R., Crowley, A.P., Vence, N., Underwood, K., Morris, G., Kelly, J. and Landry, M.J. (2021). Digital Health Coaching for Type 2 Diabetes: Randomized Controlled Trial of Healthy at Home. Frontiers in Digital Health, 3. doi:https://doi.org/10.3389/fdgth.2021.764735.
- ^ Powley, N., Nesbitt, A., Carr, E., Hackett, R., Baker, P., Beatty, M., Huddleston, R. and Danjoux, G. (2022). Effect of digital health coaching on self-efficacy and lifestyle change. BJA Open, 4, p.100067. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bjao.2022.100067.