Designing Salon & Spa Client Intake Forms

January 23, 2018

Managing Client Intake Forms - Salon

We’re excited to announce the launch of Insight Salon & Spa Software’s newest feature: Client Intake Forms. These forms will enable you to capture vital customer details and to protect both your clients and your business.

Information is Money

How well do you truly know your clients? When booking an initial visit, you may be able to collect a guests’ basic details like their names, phone numbers, and email addresses. For someone joining your loyalty or membership program, perhaps you can get a little bit more such as service or product preferences, birthdays, and mailing addresses. All of this provides you with valuable information to reach them with relevant deals and personalized offers.

As a general rule of thumb, don’t require customers to provide any details that they may not be comfortable with sharing. When collecting details, also provide information about your privacy policy. Tell clients what the data will be used for and assure them that their information will be kept safe. With that in mind, be sure that only authorized staff have access to the necessary data.

Personalized Services

Beyond demographics and contact information, it is crucial to collect any information that may impact the safety or quality of your salon & spa services. Are you aware of their past hair coloring experiences? What about possible allergies? Are there sensitive areas to avoid during a massage? Other medical issues that you should be aware of?

By asking relevant questions, you can better tailor your services to fit the needs of your clients. Furthermore, take this opportunity to learn about their home care regimens or daily haircare routines so you can recommend the right products for their lifestyles.

Consent, Consent, Consent

Beyond knowing your salon’s visitors, intake forms are also important from a legal aspect. Depending on the service you are providing, you may want to ensure that they fully understand the process involved and that they have provided all relevant information that may affect the service or its outcome. Liability waivers, service agreements, and consent statements will protect both your business as well as your customers.

Even from a marketing perspective, you should have clients opt in to any marketing communications that you may send, whether via text message or email. While it’s unlikely that your client would accuse you of spamming them, it’s always better to have any proof that they voluntarily agreed to receive your messages just in case.

Setting Up A Client Intake Form

Creating salon & spa intake forms is quite simple with Insight Software. With numerous customization options, you can choose to include a variety of multiple choice, checkbox, dropdown, short or long answer, or rating questions. For waivers and other agreements, you can also require initials and signatures.

Once the form is set up, you can easily assign it to all clients or to a select group of them. You may also create unique forms that are required for certain services. Depending on its purpose, you may also choose to have completed forms “expire” and require clients to verify details or re-accept any terms. The forms will be populated on the Insight Tablet App when a client next checks in.

Creating Intake Forms in Insight

Intake Forms on the Insight Tablet App

The Insight Tablet App is required to create and use client intake forms in Insight Software. Speak to our Sales team (1-888-919-5841) to enable the Insight Tablet App today. For assistance setting up intake forms, please contact our Support team (1-800-805-4532).


Try out Insight Salon & Spa Software for yourself with a free trial!

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software

2018: the Year of Personal and Professional Growth

updated January 2, 2018

New Year's Resolutions for Salons & Spas

Don’t waste your time and energy. Resolve to grow personally, professionally, and as a business this year. Check out a few resolution ideas and adopt a few of the goals that will challenge you, yet are achievable. Whenever possible, customize the goals to be measurable so you will be able to look back and determine if you were successful. Keep your list accessible and leave notes around to remind you to stay on track.


Prioritize work-life balance for a healthier and more enjoyable year!

1.  Spend more time with family and friends.

2.  Reduce stress.

3.  Exercise regularly.

4.  Take regular breaks throughout the day.

5.  Use your vacation time. Travel somewhere new or just stay home and relax.

6.  Get enough sleep.

7.  Eat proper meals.

8.  Volunteer your time and resources.

9.  Learn to manage your time and finances.

10. Develop a new hobby.


Grow your knowledge, skills, and network!

11. Attend industry conferences and seminars.

12. Enroll in a business course.

13. Enter an industry competition (e.g. North American Hairstyling Awards, Contessa).

14. Build your network by joining industry groups or your local chamber of commerce.

15. Find, or become, a mentor.


Reach new heights with your salon & spa business!

16. Build your brand.

17. Find a partner for cross-promotional opportunities.

18. Refresh your salon/spa interior design.

19. Become more environmentally friendly.

20. Invest in your salon and spa team.

21. Delegate tasks and teach staff to perform new duties.

22. Reduce employee turnover.

23. Save time by simplifying or automating administration tasks.

24. Plan marketing and promotional campaigns strategically. (Download a free marketing calendar.)

25. Enhance the client experience.

26. Improve your customer retention rate.

27. Increase customers’ frequency of visit.

28. Evaluate, then expand or simplify, your service menu and retail selection.

29. Boost retail sales.

30. Raise average sales transaction amounts.

How to Achieve your Goals

Get a jump start towards fulfilling your 2018 resolutions with Insight Salon & Spa Software!

  • Manage work hours, appointments, and breaks.
  • Delegate tasks by providing system access to only certain team members.
  • Automate marketing campaigns and appointment confirmations.
  • Save time by calculating payroll instantly and building inventory purchase orders automatically.
  • Create membership and loyalty point programs to boost client retention and satisfaction.
  • Improve the client experience by saving color formulas, purchase histories, and preferences.
  • Analyze your business’s performance with reports on sales, clients, employees, and other categories.

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software





This post has recently been updated. It was originally published on January 4, 2017.

Dream Big for the New Year!

November 29, 2017

2018 New Year's Goals for Salons

A new year is just around the corner. And that means it’s time to start thinking about your 2018 resolutions! Whether you want to concentrate on your salon and spa, focus on yourself, or find the right balance of both, creating goals can help you set the direction and keep you on the right path throughout the year.

Goal-Setting Tips


Running a business is a marathon, not a sprint. Take your time to craft your strategy if you want to experience long-term success. Goals should be stepping stones towards reaching your company’s vision and values. Think of them as the checkpoints in a race. If mapped out properly, you know that you are on the right track when you reach them.

To map out your goals, consider the acronym SMART: Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic, and Timely. You should know where you are aiming, when to achieve it by, and how you will get there.

Stay on the Path

Remember three-legged races? When two people are connected but each has a different goal, they’ll fall flat. But when they work towards the same finish line, they can easily reach it. Similarly, when setting multiple goals, consider how they will work together rather than separately.

It would be awesome to aim for a 10% increase across the board: client retention, prebooking rates, frequency of visit, average ticket price, etc. But would all of this be realistic? Unless there are glaring weaknesses in that salon with easy fixes, probably not. The salon would spread themselves out by trying to improve each little area and end up falling short of most their goals.

Instead, start with fewer, higher priority objectives. Once you achieve these, you can build on your successes and set your aim on new targets.

Goal Categories


Growing revenue. Cutting costs. Increasing profit. Those are all great objectives, but they are too broad. Be specific in regards to how you will achieve this. Identify at least one key performance indicator (KPI) that will help you get where you want to go.

Instead of simply aiming to “increase revenue,” you can set a goal to “raise the average value of each transaction by 5%.”

A few other KPIs that you can consider include customer retention rates, client referrals, employee productivity, and retail sales.

As mentioned earlier though, it’s best to select and focus on just a couple areas, not all of them at the same time. Perhaps, you choose to focus on building your brand and attracting new clients in the first quarter. Then in the second quarter, you build on your branding campaign by launching a loyalty program.

Branding & Reputation

While your marketing efforts certainly affect your financial situation, they often have a less direct impact and can be difficult to properly measure.

From a branding perspective, you want to increase the recognition & recall of your salon or spa. Give thought to the marketing campaigns you want to run – when will they be, which mediums will you utilize, how much will you spend, etc.

Download a free 2018 Salon & Spa Marketing Calendar

With reputation, your aim will be to increase customer satisfaction which will lead to client loyalty and referrals! To measure satisfaction, you can request feedback, conduct surveys, or monitor reviews (Google, Yelp, Facebook, etc.).

When setting your goals, please keep in mind that having more newsletter subscribers or social media followers should not be a primary focus as they do not necessarily translate into more customers. Remember that quality is just as important as, if not more than, quantity. For example, it’s better to have 5 loyal clients than have 10 single-visit customers.


Your team defines your business. Their technical skills, the way they treat your guests, their passion–it all affects how successful your salon & spa will be. By investing in your staff, you will see the return in all areas including client satisfaction, customer retention, employee morale, and revenue growth.

One simple way to develop your salon & spa team is to provide regular feedback. If you don’t already have formal one-on-ones, your first goal could be to conduct employee evaluations on a quarterly basis.

Download a free Performance Review Template

Another area to look at is your staffing decisions. Employee turnover is a real concern for most salons & spas. Do you go into panic mode and rush the hiring process? Be proactive by working out the process now, including preparing job descriptions and interview questions. Even if you do not currently have any vacant positions, you can accept general applications and build a pipeline of candidates for when a spot becomes available.

Of course, investing in your team also means supporting their continuing education. There are multiple ways you can encourage your stylists’ growth. The obvious ways are to send them to conferences or to bring in educators. However, not every budget allows for this. If you can’t afford to send them to conferences, you can still potentially help out by giving them extra paid days off in order to attend trade shows on their own dime.


Beyond your salon’s finances, branding, and team, what else is important to your business? Is the year to become more environmentally friendly, to network with local beauty schools and nearby businesses, or to get involved with charity work?

Not all your goals have to revolve around the salon though. What do you personally value most? It might be faith, family, friends, a hobby…the list goes on. Finding the proper balance between work and “life” is a struggle for most people and even more so for entrepreneurs.

While values seem to be more abstract, you can still set measurable goals: devote one day each month towards a charitable cause or work one less evening each week to spend it with your kids. By quantifying these goals, you can later look back to see if you’re truly making progress.


Whatever goals you set, be sure that they are Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic, and Timely. As much as possible, break them down into steps so you know what needs to be done and plan deliverables along the way. For example, you may need to get software to help increase efficiency and measure productivity. Or before reducing your hours, you may need to hire an additional team member. The more planning you do, the easier it is to achieve your objectives.

As a final note, setting goals will help you; however, it’s also good to maintain flexibility. Managing a salon & spa involves many variables. New trends emerge, and priorities change. The final destination may be fixed, but a slight detour may need to be taken. Throughout the year, check your map and make any necessary adjustments.

Have a great 2018!


Grow your business with Insight Salon & Spa Software!

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software

Leadership Qualities that Lead to Salon Success

September 20, 2017

Successful Hair Salon Owner

Thinking of opening a new salon & spa? It’s not a small feat; it requires energy, resources, and dedication. However, it can also be very rewarding. Let’s take a look at a few common traits of successful salon owners:


First, what does success mean to you? Your definition may differ from that of your peers. Some may be in it solely for the money, while others may be more concerned with the impact they can make on their clients and the community. Maybe your focus is on maintaining work-life balance for you and your salon team. Whatever your aim is, how do you intend on achieving it?

Create a map to success and continually steer toward it. Don’t take shortcuts or switch strategies because an obstacle gets in the way. Be patient and consider what’s best for your salon in the long run. If the ultimate goal seems distant, focus on small wins along the way.


From dipping into your savings account to cutting into your social life, you will need to make sacrifices, especially during the early stages. If you want to succeed, you need to be willing to put in the work to achieve it.

Even once you’re established, you will need to demonstrate a strong work ethic and set an example for your salon team. By seeing you go the extra mile, your employees will learn to do the same.


What drives your staff? Each of your hair stylists, nail technicians, and estheticians – everyone on your team – is motivated differently. To help them be productive, you should learn how to effectively engage them. As a starting point, acknowledge good behaviors, reward achievements, and appreciate positive contributions.


It can be difficult to give up control, however, the reality is, it’s nearly impossible to succeed when you try to do everything on your own. Instead, surround yourself with a team that you can trust. Find employees who complement you – whose strengths and skills lie in areas where you may be lacking.

By getting your staff more involved, you are empowering them to make meaningful contributions and allowing them to truly become a part of the salon team, which will help your employee retention efforts.

Related Reading: Recruiting & Retaining a Loyal Salon Team


Each stylist has a distinct personality, a unique skill set, and a different way to connect with clients. Capitalize on these differences in your salon team while also pushing each individual to grow.

Whether it’s based on behaviors you observed or from comments made by clients, successful salon owners need to provide feedback to team members and set targets for them to achieve. Help each employee to develop their techniques, to learn new skills, and to better serve clients. You don’t need to demand perfection, but instead, foster a culture of accountability and growth.

Download a free performance review template.


To manage employees effectively, clear communication is vital. Set aside time to conduct a regular team meeting to pass essential information directly to staff. Don’t rely on posting notices in the break room or on employees relaying details to each other. When introducing any significant changes, explain your decision-making process. They don’t need to agree with it, but they should understand why you made the decision and that their perspectives were considered.

Similarly, it’s important to keep clients in the loop as well. For example, notify clients prior to raising prices and explain the reasons (e.g. rising costs, gained experience).


From managing your time to storing client records and tracking inventory, organization is a key for success. It allows you to juggle priorities and quickly jump between tasks without wasting time to sort through the clutter to find relevant information. Get more done, in less time.


Admit that you don’t know everything and be willing to seek or ask for help. Find mentors, websites, blogs, or other resources that will help you grow as an entrepreneur in the beauty industry.

By showing transparency, employees will also find you more approachable and be more likely to ask for guidance or to offer suggestions.


As the salon owner or manager, remember that you set the tone for the entire organization. The culture forms around you. Whether it’s your stylists or your front desk staff, your employees will take note of your behavior and follow your example.


Free Download - Performance Review Template for Salons & Spas


Grow Your Salon & Spa By Engaging Employees

August 2, 2017

Increase Salon & Spa Productivity

As service-oriented businesses, the profitability of salons and spas is directly related to how much their employees can accomplish. Thus, it is essential to properly utilize your staff and to give them the opportunities and tools to be productive.

Schedule Accordingly

The key economic concept behind all businesses is supply and demand. When your supply (appointment slots) equals demand, you will be able to maximize profit.

If there is too much downtime (supply is greater than demand) at certain points, try reducing the number of stylists working those shifts rather than have them just sit around. On the other hand, if you have a long waiting list (demand is greater than supply), is there a way to optimize your calendar to fit in more appointments (increase supply) or could you charge a premium during these peak times (although you will decrease demand, you will actually increase revenue)?

To find the right balance, run a couple reports and analyze the trends in your appointment schedules & employee utilization rates.

Sell Products

In a simplistic view, productivity can be broken down to the average sales over a period of time. While much of that focus is on improving turnover (how many clients you can serve), that should not be the only thing. An easy way to increase transaction totals is by upselling. Service add-ons typically have a higher profit margin than the base service. Further, retail sales don’t even require any extra time or energy. By providing consultative services, you can educate the client on the benefits and usage of products to re-create a style or to make their color last longer. Through this process, clients will be more willing to purchase the recommended products.


Productivity is not only important for stylists and technicians. It also applies to management and front-desk personnel. By automating some processes, more can be accomplished and in less time.

For example, is it worthwhile to call upcoming clients to confirm appointments if you end up leaving a voicemail and they never get back to you? The idea behind it–reducing no shows–is great, but there is a better and cheaper (when considering wages) way to get this done: automatic email and text message confirmations.

It’s also been shown that multi-tasking decreases productivity as people need some time to re-adjust when switching from one task to another. While it’s crucial for someone to answer the phone, you can help your salon coordinator to better stay focused by reducing incoming calls when you offer online booking.

Focus on Strengths

Another way to get more from your employees is to focus on their strengths and experience. Are your top earners frequently spending time on tasks that can be performed by others?

For example, if master stylists are shampooing clients’ hair, they may be taking too much time out of their schedule. By passing on these duties to a shampoo assistant or another team member (whose wage will be lower than the stylist), the hairstylist can serve another paying client during that time and the assistant.

Adopt a Team Mentality

Even more important than assigning responsibilities based on employees’ strengths is the need to create a collaborative culture. You certainly don’t want team members to look down on those who play a different role. Instead, they should be looking to help each other out.

Regardless of how you schedule employees or whether you send reminders, there will be times when an appointment slot isn’t filled or a client fails to show. How can the stylist still be productive during this time? They can still contribute by re-stocking retail displays or cleaning the salon. Alternatively, they can coach less experienced team members or practice their own skills on a mannequin to improve skills, get faster, and become more confident.

Retain Staff

Not only does it take time for a new hire to get up to full speed, they will need someone to guide them along (especially for more junior positions). This will drag down the senior member’s productivity down as well.

By taking care of your staff, you can reduce turnover and thus cut down on the distractions it causes to your salon team. To improve employee retention, keep your eyes and ears open to find ways to improve morale and to continually provide opportunities/challenges for staff to grow and develop new skills.


The best way to increase productivity is through employee engagement. If they love what they do and are excited to come to work, they will be motivated to provide better service which will affect rebooking rates and your reputation (through reviews and word-of-mouth referrals).

Pay attention to your staff and learn how to motivate them. If you’re still unsure, ask them during the next round of performance appraisals. Some may just want recognition (whether internally or publicly) for accomplishments, while others may respond well to incentives (e.g. commission or bonuses) and contests (e.g. the stylist with the highest customer retention percentage wins a gift card). If some employees aren’t as motivated by individual metrics, you can set team-based goals.


Measure and increase productivity with Insight Salon & Spa Software. Download a free trial today!

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software


Invest Strategically to Grow Profitability

July 6, 2017

Cutting Costs for Salons & Spas

In order to establish and run a business, you will inevitably need to invest in numerous areas including your facility, staff, inventory, and marketing. While minimizing costs is always a good idea, it is even more important that your operating budget is being utilized effectively.

1. Be Strategic

There should be a valid reason behind every decision you make. Do the benefits outweigh the consequences (e.g. financial costs)? Are there any alternatives?

For example, consider your TV and magazine subscriptions. In addition to the associated subscription prices, they may be limiting upsell opportunities and costing you potential revenue as they distract clients’ attention from your product displays and salon menus. They may make time seem to go faster while clients wait, but is it worth the cost? It may make sense for some salons & spas, but for others, cancelling these subscriptions may be an opportunity to both save and earn more money.

2. Retain Your Employees

From writing job descriptions to interviewing candidates to training new hires, recruitment is often an expensive and time-consuming activity. When going through the recruitment process, take the time to find someone who fits with your salon and who you believe will stick around for at least a few years.

To encourage employee retention, invest in your team’s skills and careers. Beyond reducing recruitment costs, it will also enable you to provide better services, to charge more, and grow profits.

3. Maximize Productivity

As a service-oriented business, the revenue of salons & spas is directly related to how much employees can accomplish. Although they may be working hard, are they making the best use of their time?

From a revenue perspective, your business would benefit when a Senior Stylist can serve a couple clients at one time. He or she can start working with a second client when the first is in the processing stage. In addition, you can bring on a shampoo assistant to help free up your stylists as well.

At the front desk, a lot of time may be unnecessarily lost by answering calls and leaving voicemails to remind clients of appointments. Tasks such as these can be automated with online booking and text message confirmations. Utilizing salon & spa management software can help your employees to accomplish more tasks in less time and to maintain their focus on clients.

4. Understand Demand

Have you ever been stuck with boxes of inventory that you can’t seem to get rid of? By having surplus inventory, you will have money tied up in products that you will not be able to use to cover other expenses. Further, any volume discounts you received may be negated by the discount you offer in order to clear out leftover stock. On the other hand, it can also be more costly to more frequently order smaller quantities as you may not qualify for volume discounts and possibly need to pay for shipping.

Take the time to understand the demand for products so you will have an appropriate quantity. Purchase in bulk if there are certain staple products that you always need. For seasonal products, purchase in smaller quantities, perhaps enough for one month at a time. As sales for individual SKUs grow or decline, you can adjust your next order as necessary. Many software programs including Insight will help you track and order retail & backbar products.

5. Reduce Waste

Do your stylists understand that there is a cost to the supplies they use? While you don’t need to deduct supply costs from their commissions, it’s crucial that they understand the business aspect. An extra pump of color may not seem like much, but if it happens with each service, it could mean that you need to spend a couple hundred dollars more than necessary each month.

And it’s not only for supplies and products. Consider your utilities. While electricity and water are necessary for the services you provide, are there ways that you can use less? For example, do you leave lights on after business hours to showcase your salon interior? Turn them all, or at least most of them, off to save on your electric bill.

6. Utilize Your Space

Retail businesses place emphasis on the sales they make per square foot. Much thought is given to how and where products are placed to maximize sales. Similarly, are you using your space efficiently? While you certainly don’t want to cram things together, perhaps you can modify the layout to add an extra salon chair or another retail display to help generate more revenue.

Looking to freshen your salon interior? Instead of repainting the whole salon or replacing the furniture, you can create a new appearance simply by painting an accent wall or adding more natural lighting. You can then hold off on new equipment or extensive renovations until it’s really necessary. If you’re renting or leasing, the property management company may even be willing to give you a credit for facility upgrades.

7. Watch Your Advertising Spend

How do you get more clients into your salon? Are you tracking which mediums are working for you and which aren’t? Don’t focus too much on client acquisition either; prioritize customer retention! It is cheaper to retain a client than to attract one into your salon.

A few of the most cost-effective marketing ideas for salons & spas include:

Increase efficiency with Insight Salon & Spa Software!

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software


Growing Your Business with People

May 11, 2017

Stylists Impacting Salon Success

Many salon & spa owners list client retention and referrals among their top challenges. While launching new marketing campaigns can improve results, it may be beneficial to take a step back and figure out why it is such a struggle. Why aren’t clients coming back? Of those who stay, why aren’t they sending their friends to your salon?

Often, the answer can be traced to the client experience. Are customers happy with the service they receive? Do they feel they are getting the value they expect based on the price they pay? By improving the experience, you can get clients to not only stay but to also pay more for the services they receive!

Although there are many factors involved in the experience, the most important is your staff–the managers, stylists, technicians, and receptionists. Everyone plays a part. Do you have someone come in after hours to clean the salon? Although they don’t interact with clients, their role can have as much of an impact as that of your colorists and stylists.

By surrounding yourself with the right people, everything else will come easier and more naturally. Employee morale will reach new highs. Client satisfaction rises. Customer retention increases. Rebooking rates and product sales grow.

To get the right people on board, keep an eye out for the following characteristics during your hiring process:

Technical Competence

It comes as no surprise that the employee–whether it’s a hairdresser, a nail technician, or a shampoo assistant–needs to know what they are doing. Competence is necessary, and the ability to not only get the job done, but to do it in a timely manner is crucial.

To ensure that an applicant’s skill level meets a certain standard, some salons put the candidate through a test service with a model or mannequin. If you are hiring less experienced stylists, you may want to offer a training or apprenticeship program where the eventual hire works under the direct supervision of a Master Stylist for a few months before being on their own. In this situation, you will want to consider which applicant is the most willing to learn and best responds to criticism.

Social Skills

As important as the technical aspects of being a hair stylist or masseuse is, much of that can be taught. However, the personality and attitude of your employees are built into them and are difficult to change. As the salon owner or manager, you will need to determine if a candidate’s character will match your brand and complement the team. During the interview, ask some behavioral and experience-based questions to understand the candidate. When asking the questions, consider the following:

  • Is it easy to get along with the candidate?
  • How does the applicant deal with clients?
  • Does he or she work well in a team setting?
  • How does the candidate handle complaints or criticism?
  • Do they act and speak professionally?

Problem Solving Abilities

For the salon to run smoothly even when you’re away, your staff should be expert problem solvers. Regardless of experience and technical knowledge, there will be times when something doesn’t go according to plan. When this happens, will the employee be able to adjust and resolve the situation? For example if a color formula doesn’t work out properly, how will they be able to fix it? Or let’s say that there is a scheduling conflict, will your employees be able to handle the situation calmly and professionally?

When you have a team that doesn’t rely on you to fix everything, you can focus on other areas of the business, spend less time worrying about the salon, and enjoy your well-deserved days off.

Leadership Potential

For the long-term growth of the business, you should look to develop your staff internally. As they already understand the culture, the team dynamics, and the salon’s processes, you won’t need to spend as much time or money seeking an external candidate. When hiring younger team members, do you see the potential for them to be a Senior Stylist in your salon one day? Or when you recruit more experienced employees, do you see the possibility for them to be your future Salon Manager?

Instead of thinking solely about the current vacancy, also consider traits required of higher positions as well. For example, you will want to pay attention to the candidates’ willingness to learn, to mentor, to take initiative, and to hold themselves accountable.

Final Notes

By employing the right mix of people, you can positively impact the success of your salon. Client satisfaction and retention will increase, leading to more referrals. Your brand reputation will improve which will help your future marketing campaigns to drive in better results. Best of all, you can trust your staff and reduce your stress.

Are you hiring? Find the best stylist for your salon by posting your job opportunity on Indeed. Create an account today and receive $50 in Sponsored Job credits:

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Attracting Exceptional Hair Stylists with Your Job Postings

April 10, 2017

Writing Successful Salon Job Descriptions

Recruitment and retention are among the greatest challenges that any business faces, but especially so with salons and spas. Typically, there are countless opportunities available so it can be difficult to get the step up on hiring experienced stylists or the top students from a graduating class.

Even once hired, some stylists may see your competitors and think the grass is greener across the street. But by writing descriptive and honest job advertisements, you can find employees who are the right fit for your salon, and as a result, you will also see lower turnover.

1. Brand

Before you go into the specifics of the job, grab the applicant’s attention by telling them about what it is like to work at your salon. Create a desire to become a part of your team.

What are your brand values and mission statement? Is the focus to provide trendy hairstyles and colors with quality service? Or is the main goal to provide quick and affordable cuts? Are stylists encouraged to push their boundaries and enter competitions? Do you provide opportunities for further education or skill development? What is the team culture like?

Be honest in your job posting and share what it is truly like to be part of the salon team. If the description does not match the reality, you will find that many applicants will not be the right fit for your business. If you’re unsure what to mention, talk to a few of your current or past employees to get their thoughts.

2. Role

Now that you have the job seeker’s attention, it’s time to outline what you expect of the successful candidate. What are the duties associated with the job? What hours will the position require (e.g. full-time/part-time, evenings, weekends)?

For certain positions like a Master Colorist (as an example), applicants will have a decent idea of what the role entails simply from the job title. While it’s still beneficial to mention a few of the key duties, write it in a way that will excite the candidate. Explain how this position may differ from other Master Colorist positions at competing salons.

3. Qualifications

What education, experience, or skill set does the successful candidate require? This is a crucial section as it will help candidates decide whether to apply.

Unless you expect to receive an overwhelming number of applicants, list only the minimum requirements. If you mention that candidates for a Junior Stylist vacancy should have one year of experience when you are open to hiring a new graduate, recent graduates may disqualify themselves and you could miss out on some phenomenal candidates.

4. Compensation

While most hairstylists and cosmetologists love what they do, there are probably very few who would do it for 30-plus hours each week for free. An important part of a job description is to tell candidates what they can expect in return for their efforts.

Some businesses may not wish to post actual wages, and that is perfectly acceptable. However, you can still give applicants an idea of what they may receive. For example, you can mention that they will receive a competitive hourly wage in addition to product commissions. Perhaps there are bonuses for reaching revenue targets as well. And of course, mention your generous benefits package if you have one.

5. Call to Action

Perhaps most importantly, candidates need to know how they can apply. Should they walk in and drop off their résumé? Email it along with a portfolio of their work? Or submit their application through a website (e.g. job board or applicant tracking system)?

When you short list your candidates, you can consider those who properly followed the instructions and discard the applications of those who didn’t.

Final Advice

Ultimately when writing a job posting, tell the reader what they would want to know about the job. Answer the questions:

  • Why should they want to work at your salon?
  • What are the responsibilities of this position?
  • What experience or education is required?
  • How will the successful candidate be compensated?
  • How should the job seeker apply?

Once the job description is ready, distribute it to the channels where your potential applicants will be looking. Your website and Facebook page are great places to start. Consider LinkedIn for managerial positions. And check out Indeed and other job boards if you want to be found at the top of searches like “hair stylist jobs”.

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Reduce Stress and Love Your Job

April 4, 2017

Tips for Balancing Work and Personal Life

Owning a salon and spa definitely requires sacrifice. Especially in the early stages, a lot of time needs to be invested – time that is taken away from family, friends, and other activities.

However, there are a few things that you can do to prevent wasting energy, to spend less time worrying about the business, and to have more time doing what you enjoy with the people you love.

Stop Multitasking

But isn’t multitasking a great thing? Well, yes and no. It’s an important skill to have when you need to quickly switch gears. When you’re working on a marketing campaign and a stylist comes to you about an angry client, it’s essential that you drop what you’re doing and handle the situation.

However, multitasking has been shown to reduce productivity – it slows you down and negatively impacts performance. So don’t bounce back and forth from one task to another unless it’s urgent. Instead, focus on one task at a time and ensure it gets done properly before moving on to the next.

Stick to Your Plan

Similarly, don’t try to jump on every current trend or add every service possible. Only adopt those which align with your business strategy and vision. There may still be a long list of things you want to do add, but prioritize them, create a plan (include a timeline), and follow through.

Demonstrate patience as you launch and fine-tune initiatives. Don’t frantically scrap and re-start if you don’t see results in a few days or even a couple weeks.

As programs begin to run smoothly and require less time and resources, you can then start developing and rolling out your next project.

Implement Software

Invest in software that will simultaneously save you time and grow your salon or spa. By utilizing technology to your advantage, you can then focus your energy and attention to other tasks. Many programs offer features such as:

  • Automated marketing
  • Online appointment booking
  • Payroll calculator
  • Inventory tracking and purchase orders
  • Appointment confirmations

As Jaci Kottman of Salon Avalon said, “Insight Software has made my life so much easier. I now spend more time with my family rather than praying my taxes and payroll are correct.”

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software

Let It Go

We often try to control everything and worry about anything that we can’t. While it’s normal to do so, we need to learn to let go.

You don’t need to be at the salon or spa every minute or on-call 24/7. Whether or not you are there, mistakes will occur and stylists or customers may get upset, but you can let a shift supervisor deal with it. If there are any loose ends, you can take care of it the next morning.

Ultimately, trust your employees to do their jobs. After all, you hired them for a reason! Don’t micromanage them and judge their every action and decision. Whether it’s every week or once a month, you can then review their performance and provide feedback.

Love What You Do

Confucius famously said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Rediscover the passion that led to your decision to start a business.

While there will be parts of the job that you dislike, find a way to make it enjoyable instead of stressful. Maybe you love dealing with people, styling their hair, and making them smile. If that’s the case, find a way to spend more time behind the chair. This may mean delegating some administrative or even managerial duties to other employees.

Remember Your Identity

How do you define yourself? Is your identity based solely on the success of your business? While it’s great to have pride in what you do, it’s not healthy to be fully consumed by the business. You are more than a business owner. Consider your talents and skills. Your friends and family. Your hobbies and other activities.

By remembering what’s important in life and not putting too much pressure on the business, you can slow down and think through decisions rationally rather than scrambling around frantically.


Save time, increase productivity, and reduce stress:

Time Management Tips for Salon & Spa Owners

Discover the Potential of Your Salon

March 8, 2017

The Best Salon Software for Your Salon and Spa

Buying a chocolate bar at the convenience store near your home is probably a simple decision that requires little thought. Selecting software for your salon, on the other hand, requires some deeper thought and even research.

A management software program can certainly save you time, money, and energy. However, that is only the case when you find the right one. But with so many options available, how can you be sure to pick the best one for your business?

To help you find the ideal solution for your salon or spa, ask yourself three questions.

What business challenges am I facing?

How can your salon or spa improve and grow? Take a look through reports that you have run; ask employees for their thoughts; consider the feedback that customers have shared.

Every salon and spa will have a different answer. Some may find it difficult to engage and retain clients. Some may have issues with generating retail sales. Others may struggle with keeping employees around for more than a year.

As much as possible, consider if there are underlying, root causes for these challenges. For example, client retention may be a difficulty for your business. Upon closer inspection though, you may realize that clients are not returning because appointments never start on time as stylists spend too long with previous customers.

List everything you can think of. You may only be able to name 2 areas that require improvement, or perhaps 20 things popped up in your head instantly. Regardless of how many there are, think about which of these affect your business the most so you can prioritize these as you search for a solution.

Will the software resolve these issues?

If you want to grow the business and to improve in the weaker areas, implementing management software can definitely help. As you look through software features, consider how they will resolve your main challenges.

While it can’t solve all problems (it won’t fix a broken salon chair), programs like Insight Salon & Spa Software can certainly address many of them. To name a few:

  • Appointment No Shows – Automatically request confirmation and send reminders via email or SMS.
  • Client Retention – Keep customers engaged with targeted marketing campaigns and newsletters.
  • Employee Accountability – Limit employee access, record time-in and time-out, and track actions.
  • Inventory Tracking – Keep an accurate and up-to-date count of retail and back bar products.
  • Time Management – Save time on tasks as simple as booking an appointment or as complex as calculating payroll.

How much are these issues costing me?

Implementing software is an investment for your business, and you should be getting a return on it. While the marketing features provide a more direct impact to your bottom line, also consider other areas that can have a more subtle, yet significant impact on revenues and profits.

How much is a no-show costing your salon or spa? Not only are you losing revenue, but you probably still have to pay the hair stylist, nail technician, or masseuse who was supposed to serve the client. Even if you “saved” one no-show each month, you’ve probably already paid off the software.

Or consider how long it may take you to accomplish certain tasks like payroll. If you’re still calculating payroll manually, consider how long it takes to calculate all the wages, commissions, taxes, and other deductions each pay period. With software, that same task can be completed in just a few seconds. It may not technically cost you anything to do payroll yourself, however you are taking that extra time away from clients and missing out on more revenue!

Ultimately, your salon and spa software should be helping your business to solve its challenges and increase its profit.


We want to help your salon and spa grow! Call 1-888-919-5841 to find out if Insight Software is the ideal solution for your business.

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software





Developing a Positive Environment for Staff & Clients

February 7, 2017

Managing Salon Team Culture

A salon’s culture has the potential to influence the business’s reputation, customer retention rates, hiring efforts, and employee turnover.

While the concept of a company culture may seem abstract, it certainly can be felt and seen in the way that employees interact with management, coworkers, and customers.

Do employees show up with a smile every day? Are they engaged with the people around them? Or are they simply there to get the job done?

Unfortunately, creating a positive team culture is easier said than done. Take a look at a few ways to help develop your company culture.

1. Define Your Vision and Values

When creating or changing your culture, begin by defining your mission statement as it will guide the decisions and actions that you and your team will make.

Finding the right balance is important. If they feel that the only thing that matters is to maximize profit, they may focus on speed (sacrificing quality to serve more customers) or push retail products too aggressively (thus alienating clients).

On the other extreme, if you operate with the idea that “the customer is always right” and rarely stand up for your team, stylists may become fearful of making a mistake and end up spending too much time with some clients and fall behind schedule.

Consider your key values as well. Go beyond the keywords (e.g. respect, accountability, teamwork, professionalism), and think of practical ways for your team to incorporate these traits.

For example, show respect by valuing clients’ opinions (begin each appointment with a consultation) and time (make every effort to stay on schedule). Demonstrate professionalism by adhering to a dress code or by not over-sharing personal stories with clients.

2. Surround Yourself with the Right People

When you have a position to fill, hire competent stylists whose values and personality match the salon’s. Consider who will fit in and be a positive influence to the rest of the team.

At the same time, you don’t want to hire people who are too similar. It’s beneficial for the team and the business to have a diverse range of skills, personalities, and experiences. Differing opinions and ideas will help the business to grow as long as employees are always respectful to one another and willing to work as a team.

Ultimately, consider if you would trust the candidate to act in the best interests of the salon, even when you are not present.

The salon culture should also serve as a recruitment tool. Stylists should want to become a part of the team because of the people. Team members should love their jobs and refer their friends whenever a position opens up.

Download an Interview Guide

3. Enforce Expectations

During the orientation and training period, new employees should be told how they are expected to deal with certain situations. How does the team work together? How are complaints or conflicts resolved?

Even though certain values and behaviors like customer service may seem obvious, some elements can often be taken for granted when there is little emphasis on them. Remind staff regularly during team meetings or one-on-one conversations.

When employees fall short of the expectations, it needs to be addressed in a timely manner. If the situation requires, don’t hesitate to take disciplinary action. Otherwise, staff will expose and take advantage of these weaknesses.

For example, stylists who are late a few times without any consequences may not feel that punctuality is a major concern. Soon enough, a couple other stylists may start showing up late or spend too much time serving certain clients while other guests are waiting past their appointment time.

At the same time, don’t focus purely on the negative; reinforce positive behaviors as well. Show your appreciation to employees regularly. Reward the “Employee of the Month” with a Starbucks gift card. Recognize achievements (e.g. completion of a course) publicly through your social media channels.

It isn’t necessarily about being the most technically skilled or achieving the highest sales. Rather, the greater emphasis is placed on demonstrating the values of the salon.

Download Performance Review Template

4. Embrace the Personal

Think back to the golden rule and treat your team as you would want to be treated. Understand that work is just one aspect of their lives and does not define who they are as a person. Consider how you can support, and even develop, your employees on a personal level.

Provide opportunities to grow within the salon. Schedule a team bonding event every few months to develop the relationships between team members.

Perhaps, you need to offer more work-life balance and be more flexible on the schedule so employees can attend family events or take care of personal matters. Flexibility can be difficult especially with an appointment-based business, so there are times when, as the manager, you need to say no to certain requests. But the key is to show your staff that you value them as people, and not just because of their contributions to your business.

After all, a team who feels valued and taken care of will experience higher morale and greater employee retention, opposed to a dissatisfied and disengaged team where employees will leave as soon as opportunities arise elsewhere.

Changing Your Culture

Attempting to change the culture overnight will not work and will likely create conflict and lower employee morale. However, you can initiate the conversation by explaining to your staff the direction you want to head in and provide the reasoning. Be sure to listen to feedback, engage your team, and show patience as change can be difficult. Most importantly, be sure to characterize these new behaviors and values yourself if you hope to have employees follow suit.


Review your salon and spa employees’ performance regularly. Get started by downloading a free employee evaluation form:

Free Download - Performance Review Template for Salons & Spas

Grow Your Salon & Spa Business in 2017

December 14, 2016

New Year's Activities for Salons & Spas

For many salons and spas, the new year marks the end of the busy winter holidays and the beginning of a quieter month. With more time on your hands in January, what projects should you and your staff engage in?

Reflect on 2016

Take some time to think back on the past year, both professionally and personally. What went well and what didn’t? Were there particular activities that you enjoyed or that caused unnecessary stress?

Perhaps you feel that too much time this past year was spent managing the business. Then, work to improve efficiency in 2017 so you have more time to do what you are passionate about. Or maybe 2016 seemed hectic and tiring so you should cut back a few hours each week or take some more time off throughout the year.

Refocus Your Business

At least once per year, it’s a good idea to look at your vision and mission statements and to check if your business has strayed from the path. With new trends constantly popping up, it can be easy to expand too quickly with new products or services. Instead, find your niche and build your competitive advantage.

How do you plan to fulfill your mission this year? Whether you’re planning to increase client retention or to add a new location, it’s important to set SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Assignable, Realistic, and Timely.

Invest in the Team

To provide better service to clients, continuing education is crucial. It doesn’t require bringing in an expert or sending staff to a course; each employee brings a different set of skills and experience. Pair them up and let them learn from each other.

During quieter periods, you can also run team-building activities. Record a video of these exercises to showcase your salon culture. In addition to catching the attention of potential clients, you will also be noticed by hair stylists who may be looking to join your team.

Plan Your Marketing

Start planning your salon’s marketing campaigns and promotions for 2017. Think about strategies to encourage clients to refer their friends or to win back clients who you haven’t seen in months. Set up automated emails and text messages to target different client segments based on their last-in dates, purchase/service histories, or birthdays!

Even with seasonal promotions like Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, planning ahead will only save you time later.

Get started with a free 2018 marketing calendar!

Refresh the Salon Design

After some time, clients begin to overlook areas certain areas of the salon. Catch their attention again by changing the look of your salon interior! Add some extra color to one of the walls, move around your retail shelves, or build a new window display.

Give some thought to the salon layout. What path do clients take from the door to the waiting area to the salon chair, and finally back to the front desk? By strategically placing your retail products along this path, you can significantly increase sales!

Raise Prices

When was the last time you raised prices at your salon? With higher costs, more experience, and greater demand (larger clientele), you deserve a raise! The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to adjust prices.

Be sure to give at least 4-6 weeks notice prior to the rate change so clients are not caught by surprise during their appointments. Check out more tips on how to manage your price increase.

We wish you and your salon success in 2017. To learn how Insight Software can help your business, give us a call at 1-888-919-5841.

Save time, increase productivity, and reduce stress:

Time Management Tips for Salon & Spa Owners

Developing Your Salon Team for Business Growth

November 7, 2016

Salon Performance Review

Having regular one-on-one, career-focused conversations with employees is critical to your salon or spa’s success. If they are performing at their full potential, clients will be satisfied with the service they receive and rebooking rates will increase. On the other hand, your business may be missing out on revenue or failing to retain clients if they are struggling in certain areas. To grow your business and help employees to develop professionally, evaluating employee performance on a regular basis is crucial.



Employees should first have an opportunity to reflect on their performance and to identify their own strengths and weaknesses. Ideally, each employee will complete an evaluation form which will then provide some structure for the discussion. A copy of this evaluation should also be kept in the employee’s file in case you need to reference it in the future.

Download a free Employee Evaluation form.

Customer Feedback

While there may be a couple customers who complain about small or irrelevant details, client comments and suggestions provide valuable insight on how they and other customers perceive your salon, the employee, and the service.

As you review feedback, organize them according to the relevant employee if possible and use these to provide concrete examples during the employee review. Reinforce positive behaviors as much as possible. And help employees discover how to improve in areas with negative feedback.

Performance Reports

As a manager, you don’t have enough time to watch over each employee’s shoulder. Fortunately, you can run performance reports to identify trends, strengths, and weaknesses. For example, if you notice that one stylist has a retention rate below average, you can then investigate the reason and work with them to improve in that area. A few areas to watch for include:

  • Client Retention Rates
  • Retail Sales
  • Average Sales Price per Client Visit

360 Review

With the 360 performance review, you are gathering feedback from everyone they deal with: other stylists, the salon coordinator or receptionist, and managers. This may provide some insight on how they interact with others and if there are any conflicts that need to be addressed. To get honest feedback, the person providing the comments should stay anonymous to the employee under review.


Rather than telling the stylist what needs to be improved, first give them a chance to discuss their areas for improvement (they can refer to the self-evaluation form they filled out). Ask questions to help them discover solutions for themselves. They will have more of an open mind and will be more likely to buy in to it when they suggest it than if they feel that they are getting a list of demands.

When you share your feedback, start with the positive and end with the positive. Prevent employees from feeling like they are being personally attacked and keep them from getting overly defensive where they try to justify every action or behavior. Be sensitive and allow employees the chance to respond. While they should be accountable for their actions, there may be reasons that they are exhibiting certain behaviors. Simply telling them to change may lead to lower morale with zero growth, but taking the time to help an employee address the root cause is worthwhile.

As a manager, you need to help your team to be successful. Be willing to get feedback from them as well. What ideas do they have for making the salon a better place to work? How can you, as the salon manager, contribute to their growth?

Action Planning

Of course, it is essential to not only bring up problems but to find a way to resolve them as well. Together, you and the employee can create a plan to improve on these weak areas and to also set a time at which you will re-evaluate and have a follow-up discussion. Depending on the significance of the issue, you may need to also outline possible disciplinary actions if the employee does not show improvement during the re-evaluation period.

Not all employees will have problems that need to be addressed. Instead, the goal may be to help them develop new skills or to challenge them in new ways. When setting goals, try to make them measurable so you can determine if they are achieved or not. For example:

  • send a stylist to attend two courses or seminars every year to further develop or learn new skills
  • task an employee with posting on your social media networks daily or writing one blog post for your website each month
  • challenge an employee to raise their average sales ticket by $5

Review your salon and spa employees’ performance regularly. Get started by downloading a free employee evaluation form:

Free Download - Performance Review Template for Salons & Spas

How to Run Payroll with Insight

August 17, 2016

Payroll with Insight Salon and Spa Software

Running your salon’s payroll through Insight Software is quick and hassle-free! With a built-in time clock and up-to-date tax tables for Canada and the United States, you don’t need to worry about calculating income or deductions on your own. Take a look at how to set up and run payroll in Insight.

Commission Setup

The first step is to customize your commission schemes. With Insight Software, you can manage commissions however you want! Create one scheme for all employees or one for each team member or job title.

Commissions can be based on an employee’s gross sales or the net profit they generate. You can pay a flat commission (say 40%) for all sales or set up a multi-level system. An example of the latter would be where commissions start off at 40% for the first $500 sold, then rises to 50% for sales between $501 and $2000, and finally 60% for sales above $2001. This works great for rewarding top performers.

Alternatively, you can vary commission rates based on which services or products are sold. This method is ideal for incentivizing staff to push certain products or services. For example, basic services may provide employees with 30% commission while add-on services offer 50%. Employees would then earn more by upselling clients. You can also offer higher commissions for products that you want to clear out quickly or that have a higher profit margin.

Finally, you have the option to pay out commissions as a percentage of sales (most common method) or as a flat amount (think of a bonus for reaching sales targets).

Employee Setup

When onboarding a new team member, it only takes a couple minutes to set up their payroll details.

1. Enter base salary and/or hourly wage. Determine the applicable overtime rate.

2. Choose the income formula for the employee:

a. Salary/Wage OR commission;
b. Salary/Wage AND commission; or
c. Wage OR service commission PLUS product commission

3. Select payroll frequency (weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly).

4. Assign suitable commission schemes for products and services.

5. Enter how much vacation the employee earns. When you run payroll, you will have the choice of whether to pay it out or to keep it in a vacation bank.

6. Input tax-related details including any applicable federal tax credits, state withholding allowances, marital status, filing status, and number of dependents.

7. Decide if you will remit Social Security (S.S) and Medicare (Med.). Canadian businesses will be given the choice to remit Employment Insurance (EI) and Canada Pension Plan (CPP).

Running Payroll

Once set up, running payroll is a cinch. Click to create a new payroll run, select the pay period date range, and then salaries, wages, commissions, taxes and deductions are all calculated for you! Tips and vacation pay are included as well. With Insight, you can manually edit fields as necessary. For example if you gave an employee an advance, you can remove that amount from their current pay period. After making any adjustments, hit “Post” to finalize the pay run, then print or email pay stubs to your employees.

Experience a Free Trial of Insight Salon & Spa Software


Know the Right Questions to Ask

July 21, 2016

Salon Interviewing Tips

One of the more stressful parts of running a salon is managing employees. Some salon owners and managers are constantly worried about the potential for an employee walkout or about the continual revolving door of new and departing team members. To reduce this stress, it’s important to hire the right people to join the team and not hire someone just to fill the vacant position.


After receiving all the job applications, select three to five candidates to come in for an interview. It can be hard to compare candidates and to narrow down the choices based on a few pages of information. Below are a few things to look for when shortlisting applications:

  • Professionalism – Has the applicant paid attention to details by ensuring there are no typos or grammatical errors?
  • Competency – Does the candidate have the necessary education, certifications, or experience?
  • Loyalty – Has the stylist jumped from salon to salon in a short time frame?
  • Growth – Has the applicant taken on new roles or responsibilities? Has he/she shown interest in continuing education by attending courses or conferences?
  • Values – Does the stylist have a similar set of values as your salon? For example if your business prides itself on community involvement, look for volunteer experience on the résumé.

If a cover letter is also included, take a look to see if it’s tailored to your business and job posting or if it seems to be a generic letter that is being sent to every salon in the area.

Interview Questions

Prepare a list of questions to provide some structure to the interview and to ensure you have similar points to easily compare candidates later. The list should simply act as a guide. Interviews should be conversational in nature, so feel free to jump ahead as topics come up (make sure to go back though) or to skip some questions completely if the applicant has already discussed it thoroughly.

Download a free interview template now.

“Tell me a bit about yourself.”

To start off, ask an open-ended question to get the conversation flowing, to allow everyone to get comfortable, and to just learn about the person.

“On your résumé, you mentioned…”

With only brief descriptions on applications, take some time to get any clarification or to learn more about the stylist’s education or experience. Don’t hesitate to ask some performance-based questions about retail sales or client retention.

“Has there been a time when…”

A valuable interview technique is to ask behavioral questions. The intention is to understand how they deal with certain scenarios such as conflict with coworkers/managers, complaints from clients, or pressure to reach sales targets. The ideal answer will tell you about the situation, the action the applicant took, and the end result. You may also want to hear if they’ve learned from that experience and how they would change their action if a similar situation arose again.

“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”

While it may put some candidates on the spot, follow up by asking how they intend to reach that position. Their answer will give you insight into how they fit into your salon’s plans. Are they looking to improve their skills and move up the ladder eventually, or are they hoping to do the minimum and stay where they are?

“Why do you want to work for us?”

Find out what they know about your salon, whether from prior experience or from researching your business. It will help determine if their goals and values are aligned with your salon.

“What would you do if you found a penguin in the freezer?”

Ask a completely random question like the one above from Trader Joe’s. There is no right or wrong answer but it shows how the applicant will react to and approach unexpected problems. Some people may refuse to answer while others will creatively seek a solution.

“Do you have any questions for us?”

While it isn’t an official question, this can give you a lot of insight into their interest in the position and in the salon. For example if their first question is about wages, it will seem that they are primarily interested in the financial aspect and it doesn’t matter to them who they work for.

Note: While you may want to have a casual and conversational interview in some instances, be careful about the questions you or any interviewer asks. Even if there is no intention to discriminate, questions about race, religion, age, etc. can land you in legal trouble.


After conducting all the interviews, go over your notes to determine and weigh the pros and cons of each candidate. For example, it is preferable to hire a stylist who is a better fit with the rest of the team than someone who has an extra year of work experience. If you are still having trouble selecting between two stylists, bring them in for a second interview and have another manager or employee with you to get their perspective as well.


Download Salon Interview Questions