The Reality of Re-Opening
The time has come. After weeks of stay at home orders, many states are allowing salons to re-open. What does that look like? What challenges are you about to face? Where do you begin?
One of the first challenges you face may well be negativity about opening too early and not doing your part to stop the spread of Covid-19. Robert Brown of Hairobert in Germantown, TN had an excellent response to this very issue.
“First, I didn’t make the decision. Every area is different and our cases are no where near like other areas. Second, once the mayor reopens everything the bills keep on coming and assistance stops if you’re not closed down governmentally. Third, we have a 3 page checklist of prevention and precaution… We have a small, clean salon and few stylists. We know every client, we don’t take walk-ins, and everyone is vetted by questionnaire and temperatures. We have 10+feet between stations and all PPE… With all these additional measures I feel confident that I can give quality service without transmission of any diseases. We will be diligent and thorough with recommended guidelines. There has to be 15 minutes between clients for re-disinfection and sanitation all around. ALL surfaces that get sprayed and wiped perpetually before during and after each client.”
The second challenge you are going to face is scheduling. Behind the Chair has some great articles on the process of rescheduling guests. Some owners are taking a ‘triage approach.’ This categorizes clients into 3 groups; those that come in every 2-4 weeks and regularly prebook; clients who come in every 4-8 weeks and finally those who come in every 3-4 months. Learn more here. https://bit.ly/2WLaXJ2.
Cathy Salas, General Manager of the Eric Fisher Salons gave us a breakdown of how the reopening process looks for them. To begin with, the salon increased the hours they are open. The normal hours of operation, 9am to 6pm, are now 7am until 10pm, Monday thru Saturday. (The salon will maintain their Sunday schedule of 10am to 6pm.) Then stylists temporarily changed their schedule so that the salon runs split shifts during the longer days.
Since the pre-book rate at Eric Fisher Salons is high, most clients already had future appointments on the books. The first step was to adjust the existing appointment time to accommodate the change in hours and schedules. Once that was done; front desk associates went back to those who had missed appointments and begin scheduling them.
clients & protocol
Finally, you have to address the clients – who all want in the first day! Eric Fisher Salons sent out an email and video letting their clients know what to expect.