How we find jobs has changed. We have technology to thank for that. One of the direct knock-on effects of this reality is that finding and recruiting the right staff is becoming increasingly difficult. And as if that wasn’t enough, there’s often a discrepancy between the skills hair and beauty courses teach, and the skills salon owners look for in a candidate. It’s tough. How do you find someone “technically skilled, experienced, trustworthy, loyal, relaxed and friendly but not too friendly, client-focused, results-driven, who shows attention to detail, is well-mannered and well-presented, has sales skills and the ability to retain clients?”
We have to think of smarter ways to attract the right candidates, find new ways to advertise salon job openings.
But First, Are You Ready To Recruit?
Is Your Team Performing To The Best Of Their Abilities?
Before you start recruiting, it’s important that you make sure that your team is performing and achieving their targets to the best of their capacities. Creating a culture of performance and achievement will help you recruit only when you know you’re going to need it, rather than going down the “panic recruitment” route.
Are Your Opening Hours Optimized?
This point to me is the most important one. Rota management is a powerful tool to answer customer demands and generate an increase in revenue. Make sure your roster is efficient, and that your staff utilisation rates are well over 50%.
Have You Created A Recruitment Procedure?
Think year-round recruitment, as a recruiter would. Doing this will help you build a portfolio of people you can call. It’s all about never missing out on an opportunity to find the right person. Someone mentioned to me that having that constant recruitment attitude can look desperate. To me, it depends on how you formulate it: “we are constantly growing, come and join our team to develop your skills” has a positive attitude towards the job on offer.
” […] every brand has its culture, you know, has its values. HC MedSpa is a luxury brand; it’s a very ambitious brand. We want to grow; we want to get bigger. And at the same time, we don’t compromise. You know, we offer a certain standard, a certain quality. So we know, when people are interviewed, we have a really in-depth interview process, and we can find out by people’s, when we’re interviewing them, you know, what are their plans, how successful do they want to be? Or is this just something that we can feel is a stepping stone or something like that, they’re probably not right for us. But if someone walks through the door who’s obviously highly qualified and also has dreams, has targets, has goals, ambition, that’s what we’re looking for. That’s the potential that we’re looking for. And then we put a lot of development into them that hopefully makes a perfect package all round.”
– Saad Aslam, Phorest FM Episode 61
Have You Defined Your Ideal Candidate Profile?
What will this new team member have to do? When are they needed? Do you have a list of tasks already at hand? For instance, if you want someone who can do weekends, but end up interviewing a candidate who doesn’t want to do them, then she/he isn’t the ideal candidate for you. Recruiting someone because you’re desperate will never be the right fit for your team.
Is Your Job Description Up To Date?
Your job description is the key piece of the puzzle. It’s what helps you set and communicate your expectations to candidates and future staff members. Make sure you create a thorough description of the job role and identify every task and responsibility it implies.
Learn more about the current recruitment crisis in the hair and beauty industry in this Phorest FM podcast episode featuring UK guest Sam Pearce of The Potting Shed Spa:
Advertising Your Salon Job Openings
- LinkedIn: It’s a useful tool. However, not all therapists or hairdressers are on it. Most profiles I’ve found were self-employed, but on the flip side, the ones who are on LinkedIn are usually serious about their roles. It could be an option if you needed a booth renting staff for a while?
- Indeed: It’s a good job board, and you don’t have to spend any money on it. However, be careful about how you set it up because that’s where you can end up paying far too much. My advice is to contact them to set up what you need.
- Your website and social media: These are key to attract the right candidates. Posting videos about your salon job openings is a great way to send a strong message as to why a potential candidate should apply.
- Gumtree: This platform can be powerful, and well, it’s free!
- Recruiters: They have tons of potential candidates in their database and can help you find the ideal person for the position you’re trying to fill. Get to know some recruiters and build a healthy relationship with them to help them understand what you want. When you start working with them on a long-term basis, you can negotiate the commission. To give you an example, I work with Michelle Caheny in the UK, from Spa and Beauty Connection and have an international recruiter Janet Bradford from Active Connection. I trust them, because I know that they know my standards.
- Posters: Put one up in your salon! You never know, a customer might know someone who knows someone! Again, you can make it very refreshing without sounding desperate!
- Networking events: Crucial! Always have a few business cards on you!
- Open days: Sometimes they’re powerful. Once or twice a year, try placing an ad in your local paper and see if you have any takers.
- Local colleges: They’re important too, that goes without saying. Build a relationship with them so you can look at employing their strongest students.
- International colleges: Identify a few strong ones in the countries where you’d think students might want to join you. Build relationships with those colleges the same way you would with local ones.
- Other businesses: I encourage this. Personally, I even use the chamber of commerce or the council to advertise any salon job openings.
- Job Centers: They can be impactful, it’s worth talking to them.
Finally, while I’m not a huge fan of having friends or family working together, sometimes incentivising your staff to refer new candidates can work (these candidates must past their probation period though, just like anyone else)! All in all, a defined recruitment plan of action should be at the heart of your day-to-day operations, even when you are fully staffed; people that may not work for you today might work for you tomorrow.