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5 Essential Tips for Hiring The Right Salon and Spa Employees
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Bringing new salon or spa employees on board can be a big step for your business. It can be intimidating if your salon is still relatively young and you’re looking to facilitate growth. Employees play a fundamental role in the success of your business. You want the best people possible in the correct positions to ensure that you have happy clients who return time and again. We’ve put together some essential tips outlining how to hire talented, motivated, and responsible beauty industry professionals

[Read more: 8 Tips to Create a Calm Environment For Your Spa Clients]

Knowing When to Hire New Employees

Knowing how to hire new staff for your salon business requires knowing when you need them. It is the first step in building a solid and reliable team of people who genuinely make a difference to your daily operations. 

Before you embark on the hiring journey, ask yourself these questions to determine whether it’s the right time for new salon employees:

  1. Do you have more clients you need to book, and do you need additional staff to provide for those clients? 

Hiring employees who can service your clients is a great way to increase your business’s revenue streams. You can’t expand your operation if you don’t have the available time or resources or are already turning clients away. Adding another 40+ hours of bookable time to your weekly schedule could significantly boost your profit margins, especially when times are tough.

  1. Do you need assistance to service your existing clients?

It’s time to consider your current service care levels. If you and your team are already battling to provide a consistent level of service, it might be time to recruit new employees to join the ranks. You should also consider hiring if you are keeping clients waiting for long periods in reception. Or if you’re regularly rescheduling their appointments due to double-bookings and time constraints. 

You could even hire spa employees to take care of those essential behind-the-scenes tasks like station set-up, cleaning, laundry, housekeeping, and reception. Having someone on board to take care of these small but crucial details can help your spa business run on time. Plus, it will provide excellent customer service without putting additional pressure on your salon and spa staff.

  1. Do you need assistance to expand and grow your salon and spa? 

Keep an eye on your daily and weekly schedules. Suppose you’re regularly working 16-hour days to keep up with your responsibilities and client bookings, having someone new onboard (like an accounting, recruitment, or marketing professional) could reduce this pressure. It will allow you to focus on growing your salon business instead of simply keeping it going. 

How to Advertise Available Positions

It’s essential to carefully consider who you are looking for when creating adverts for available positions at your salon. The more specific you can be, the fewer unsuitable candidates you will have to deal with during the application phase. 

Make a list of the top 5 or 6 traits and skills you are looking for on your team. Then, base your ad on these characteristics. For example, a front-of-house manager or receptionist should display these traits:

  • A knack for customer service
  • Excellent written, spoken, and in-person communication skills
  • Great organization and time management abilities
  • Willing to work customer service hours, late evenings, and weekends
  • Familiarity with point-of-sale processes

Use your ad to describe the position in full. Offer candidates important information about your expectations, the work they will be doing, the environment they will be working in, and your company culture. 

Be upfront about different expectations, such as requiring the new hire to work on Saturdays or holidays. Mention any training you offer as part of the upskilling or onboarding process. 

Use widely and commonly understood terms, and avoid using slang or vernacular in your job listings. Be sure to state the level of experience you are looking for specifically. Always include any required qualifications or accreditations you would like your candidates to have. It will help to ensure that the majority of your applicants are fully qualified to fill the position.

The 5 Key Steps of the Recruitment Process

  1. Planning

For day spa employees, sales and commissions are a crucial source of revenue that also emphasize consistent, high-quality care. Many spa workers are encouraged to sell retail products alongside their services to supplement their spas’ earnings. These employees are paid in part or in full from their commissions. An agreement like this works towards incentivizing retail sales and quality client care.

Before you hire new staff, you will need to decide on a commission rate for them. Evaluate your business’s finances closely. Calculate all of your fixed salaries and expenses and compare these expenses to your monthly revenues. You can use an automated business management tool to handle workers’ compensation and payroll, assessing your current expenditures to obtain a recommendation.

The difference between your income and expenses will provide you with the highest commission rate you can pay new salon employees. Use this figure as a guide to plan variable commission rates for each employee and position. Commission rates generally range between 20% and 60%, depending on the business’s current financial situation.

The commission-only staff structure makes sense for many salons and spas. It incentivizes employees to keep their clients happy, forming strong personal relationships with new and existing customers. 

However, most businesses opt for a combination of commissions and hourly rates. This method provides all the advantages of commission-only structures while still providing employees with a minimum income they can count on each month. You can use this structure to encourage employees to perform other tasks around the salon when business is slow.

  1. Recruiting

Businesses can recruit most salon and spa jobs via online job boards, social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook, and other traditional hiring methods. 

People who can fill specialized positions that require certification, such as cosmetologists, nail technicians, and massage therapists, usually study at accredited colleges that offer certificates for these skills. You may wish to recruit directly from these institutions to ensure that your staff are correctly trained and accredited.

  1. Assessing and Interviewing

The interviewing and recruitment process is going to take time. The more time you are willing to spend searching for the right additions to your team, the better your chances of finding highly qualified and motivated candidates for your open roles.

Treat each interview as a chance to get to know each applicant and use it as an opportunity to give them more information about your salon business. Bear in mind that most spas and salons prefer staff members who display good employee traits such as:

  • Courtesy and timeliness
  • Friendliness and professionalism with clients and with employers
  • Comfort with working on evenings and weekends if necessary
  • Having their own transport

Consider asking your applicants a few questions during these interviews to assess their client management skills. For example, you could ask them how they would deal with a problematic or unsatisfied guest. Or, what makes them stand out in their professions, and why they were attracted to the position advertised in the first place.

  1. Checking References

Your applicants will have provided you with past employer references at your request during the interview stage. Your first step in checking these references is to do some simple fact-checking. 

Did your applicant work at the establishments they claim they did? Were they honest about their accomplishments and roles? Did they display any outstanding employee traits? Ask their past employers about how they are with clients, their temperament and attitude, and their ability to arrive at work on time and manage booking schedules efficiently.

Not all references will be entirely honest with you about their former staff. Unless an employee performed very poorly, most employers would be optimistic about them, as they won’t want to jeopardize their chances of landing a new job. You can circumnavigate this by asking a few specific questions. 

Request an example of a mistake or challenging situation that the candidate found themselves in and how they handled it. Compare the past employer’s answer to that candidate’s analysis of their skills and abilities. Next, ask the past employer what they think the candidate most needs to improve, giving you a clear idea of their weaknesses and how easy they’ll be to address. You don’t want a new employee to hinder your existing team. 

  1. Hiring Employees

Once you’ve chosen the ideal candidate to join your team, you will need to follow specific steps to complete the hiring process in compliance with local laws. You need to classify your new worker as an independent contractor or an employee. 

Read up on the IRS’s regulations on this topic. There can be severe repercussions for misclassifying your spa employees. Introduce your new hire to your existing team, and if possible, have one of your staff with a similar role show the newcomer the ropes. It would help if you briefed them on your salon’s rules, expectations, and culture. This way, they know how to conduct themselves once their work starts.

Setting Staff Up For Success

Once you’ve hired your salon’s newest employee, it’s vital to bear in mind that your job has just begun. Regardless of their level of expertise, you now need to induct them into your team and give them the right start. Doing so will ensure that they become a valuable, productive member of your business.