Debunking salon regulations you’re not required to follow
The sound of the salon’s door opening as new and regular customers walk in, the smell of hairspray hanging in the air, the taste of a fresh, medium roast coffee as it hits your lips – for most salon owners, it’s these little things that make them happy that they’re back in the game. Reopening the salon has become a rebirth of sorts, as now is the perfect opportunity for introducing new treatment options, implementing new and creative marketing ideas and gaining a load of clients. However, there’s also the case of new salon guidelines issued by the government that must be followed.
If you’re like most salon owners, then you’ve probably gone over the entire list more than once, created and launched your COVID-19 health screening questionnaire and have purchased a month’s supply of cleaning products and PPE. However, there are still a number of questions that you may feel have gone unanswered, or you’re simply unsure about certain regulations – and this article will clear things up!
Tip: You can find the government’s guidance for hair and beauty businesses here.
Face masks in the salon – required or not?
Your 10:00 a.m visit is about to begin – the client disinfects their hands and walks into your salon, but without a mask. Are you required to deny them entry into your salon? Or can they be treated? From 24 September, guidance stating that face coverings and visors should be worn in close contact services will become law. Your staff must wear a face visor and face cover – either reusable or single-use ones will suffice. The visor should cover the entire face, from the forehead down to the chin and the sides of the face. This prevents water droplets from dispersing, either from the client or the employee, which helps reduce the possibility of infection. It is also important to clean reusable visors before and after each visit.
Obviously, when you’re treating a client, maintaining social distancing requirements of 2 metres is not possible (we’re disregarding the whole “trimmer on a stick” trend) – in this situation, you are required to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 by having your staff wear a visor and a face covering. You are however required to maintain social distancing wherever possible – the toilet, workstations and treatment rooms may only accommodate one customer at a time. Places such as your waiting room or reception area must be marked off by tape to show clients where they can stand in order to maintain social distancing. If you have limited space in these areas, you should introduce queues outside.
As the employer, you’re held responsible for ensuring the safety of your clients and staff. Prior to taking in a customer, you are required by law to have them fill out a health screening questionnaire, which asks if they have a high temperature, along with other questions. If you have Versum, you can send the survey to each client prior to their visit, using the Screening Questionnaire feature. If the client responds that they either have a high temperature, other COVID-19 symptoms, or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for this disease, then the system requires that they cancel their booking. However, you are not obliged to measure their temperature if they pass the survey.
Limiting your working hours and the number of clients
In order to effectively reduce the risk of an outbreak of COVID-19, the government guidance encourages hair and beauty specialists to keep face-to-face contact with clients and other staff members at a bare minimum – to which you probably scoff at. It’s nearly impossible not to speak with clients or your team throughout the workday, let alone maintain social distancing. Although there are no government regulations limiting your working hours, there are certain laws that must be upheld, which can limit your work output. Sure, you can serve even 100 clients a day, however, you need to find the time to create staff shift groups, have a thought-out shift handover process to avoid contact with next-shift employees, and make sure reusable PPE and workstations are regularly cleaned. In other words, treating customers while abiding by the latest regulations will impact how much you can get done throughout the day, as well as the number of clients you’ll be able to treat either way.
Not being able to serve water
You obviously don’t want a client to come in for their hair appointment and chow down a 3-course meal – that would not only be rude, but would also go against the government guidance. However, you are allowed to offer clients water in disposable cups or bottles. As for your staff, they are required to bring their own food and beverages. The reason for this is obviously to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19, and with disposable containers, the risk is significantly mitigated.
Simply put – government regulations are imposed in order to reduce the possibility of a COVID-19 outbreak by means of encouraging staff to regularly clean and disinfect their tools and workstations, by having clients fill out a screening questionnaire prior to their visit, and by minimising face-to-face contact. To help you operate your salon in this new reality, Versum is your go-to solution. With options such as online booking, the Screening Questionnaire, appointment book, customer database and many others – you’ll be able to operate smoothly and in compliance with the latest government-issued regulations. Sign up today and see how a reliable salon system can help!