Re-Opening Your Grooming Business After Lockdown
With the government easing lockdown restrictions, and a feeling of some normality on the horizon, many of you will be preparing to reopen your grooming salons. There are guidelines in place with regards to social distancing, cleaning and the wearing of personal protective equipment but as well as these measures to limit the spread of Covid-19 there are other elements of business to consider.
Reassessing your pricing
Prior to this pandemic you may have looked to offer the best value grooms compared with your local competitors. As salons reopen now, after the period of lockdown, it is important to consider your bottom line and assess your pricing based on your outgoings. Make sure to keep track of expenses including the new costs associated with cleaning supplies such as gloves, sanitisers, and extra cleaning products. Now is a good time to ensure that payments can be made to you by Bank Transfer or as a contactless card payment. PayPal may also be an option for your salon.
Your staff and their return to work
If multiple staff groom in your salon but the size of your salon does not allow for safe social distancing, you may want to consider a staggered return to work over the different stages of lock down. This might mean that staff return part time to work alternate days, or maybe some staff work mornings and others in the afternoon. Regardless of the schedule remember to deep clean all shared workstations before and after each groom.
Handover and Appointment Times
Depending on the location and size of your grooming salon you may want to ask owners to wait in their cars until you are ready to receive their pet or you may wish to operate a drop to the door policy. If you have the space to groom multiple pets at a safe social distance you will want to consider staggered appointment times to ensure previous clients have left and that you have had adequate time to deep clean all work stations and tools. Remind them that leads and collars are to remain with owner.
You may want to schedule appointments initially for those whose bookings were cancelled or possibly start a priority list for clients who wish to have bookings opened to them first. Working with your familiar and existing client base may help minimise the risk of spreading Covid-19 but also shows you value your loyal customers by prioritising them over new clients.
Consider setting a special time or block of bookings for at risk clients – this may be first thing in the morning to avoid as much contact with others as possible, but offering this might reassure these customers of their safety when they book an appointment with you.
You may want to offer longer appointments for your clients’ first post covid-19 visit in order to deal with any coat issues after many weeks in lockdown, but also to be able to take time to manage any behaviours caused by anxiety which the dog may exhibit. Many dogs who are normally content on the grooming table may suffer a degree of anxiety after lockdown easing as they adjust to the ‘new normal’.
Ready your tools
As well as making sure all equipment and workspaces are deep cleaned, now is the time to ensure all electrical items are in good working order, blades are cleaned, and scissors sharpened. Your customers are going to be delighted to see you reopened and you don’t want to have to postpone appointments while you wait on deliveries of key grooming products.
Making sure you have enough stock of your wet products and as we’re seeing warmer weather, make sure to include some anti-flea and tick products as these pests become more of a problem. Groom Professional’s brand new range is suitable for all coat types and contains concentrated neem oil, which is not only anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and great for skin irritations, but it is also a natural remedy to repel and remove ticks and fleas. This deep cleansing shampoo also contains coconut oil to nourish skin and coat after months of lockdown.
As well as stocking up on your grooming products it’s important you have all your cleaning products and appropriate PPE ready.
Making sure the salon is rigorously cleaned will be a top priority to keep not only you and your staff safe, but also your clients. Clean all workstations, baths, tables and holding cages, before and after each use. It’s also important to clean all tools between uses. Removing all unnecessary equipment and decorative items from your salon will make it easier to thoroughly clean between grooms.
We have a range of disinfectants available to provide enhanced cleaning and disinfection for all major hard surface areas and non-slip flooring. Consider contact time for disinfectants and take these times into consideration when making appointments so you have enough time to successfully clean between dogs.
Take Care of Yourself
Wearing a mask while you work and asking your clients to do the same, if they have to enter the premises, is to stop you both from spreading the virus should you be infected but asymptomatic. Remember to replace your masks any time you take one off, if you’re wearing reusable masks replace with a freshly laundered one or discard your disposable mask and replace with a new one. Gloves should be replaced after bathing dogs and before every new client. Resist touching your hair, face and any personal items while at work and wash your hands thoroughly and regularly.
As well as wearing PPE, maintaining good hygiene and following social distancing guidelines to prevent exposure to Covid-19, it’s also important to look after other elements of your health, both physical and mental.
With increased handwashing for hygiene alongside the normal exposure to water your hands have while washing pets, your skin may suffer and become dry and cracked.contains Marula Oil to moisturise and strengthen nails, Sweet Almond oil to sooth dry irritated skin, and Cocoa and Shea Butter for ultimate nourishment. Treat your hands by applying this before bed.
Grooming can be stressful and tiring in normal times and during lockdown easing, that stress may increase. With the added pressure of following government guidelines for safe practice and possibly an increased workload, you may find our Showseason Roll-Ons useful. These are available in Energy Lift and Headache Relief. The blend of oils in Headache Help quickly erases headache pain and helps to calm and relax you, and you can use Energy Lift to help lift fatigue.
When you reopen you may notice you struggle with the return to being on your feet all day. Having the right footwear can help as well as using thewhich helps with circulation and tired legs.
With all these things considered and arranged, now it’s time to start contacting your clients to let them know when you intend to reopen – you can bet they’ll be pleased to hear from you!
The majority of your clients will have been isolating in their homes so they may require reassurance before making an appointment, so this contact is a great way to let them know what they can expect when they arrive at the salon for their post-covid-19 appointment. You can include information on:
- Screening employees for symptoms (where available and applicable).
- Your detailed plan for risk managing the spread of Covid-19 in your salon.
- The deep cleansing and cleaning plans for the salon before reopening and once you have opened.
- How dogs are to be handed over and new limits on the number of people in the salon.
- Whether you want clients to wear masks and gloves when visiting for their appointments
- Details of any special times for higher-risk clients.