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Katie Howell

Spa consultant

How To Build A Luxury Spa 4

Part 4 – Staff Projections

Welcome back! Doesn’t it really feel like this luxury spa vision is coming to life each week as we cover more ground and discuss those all important individual aspects of your spa build. This week it’s all about people and how I really hone in on the staff projections for your spa.

Great Expectations

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times . . .  What does your ideal clientele want from your spa? Even when considering your staffing levels, you need to start with the expectation of your clients.

When building a luxury spa it is so important that the entire experience is luxurious and reflects the five star ethos that clients expect and this starts from the moment they arrive and are greeted.

One of the examples I have used with spa clients previously is to ask them if they want to emulate somewhere like the Apple store where there are lots of hosts on hand (with an ipad or similar) to greet, check in and be available to assist new clientele? Alternatively, I ask my clients if they think their customer would appreciate a more formal environment whereby there are one to two receptionists that sit behind a desk to welcome people.

When considering these options it is important to mentally walk through that arrival experience for first time and returning guests. Take the time to understand what the actual process will be for new guests at your spa, will a host actually take new guests on a tour and explain how their visit will go and where all the amenities are? Or will your spa be laid out in a way that new guests can easily navigate their way around and instead you just tell them where they need to be for their treatment at a certain time?

When it comes to returning guests and those clients that we want to be visiting us regularly, what is their experience going to be? Will they favour a warm and efficient greeting by one of the hosts given that they know their way around and don’t require the formalities of new clients or do they want that personal touch where they are escorted to their treatment room each time. 

By putting in the work to identify and understand our target market so well means that we can choose the right staff from the outset and this leads me on to my next point. . .

Be The Exception To The Rule

Our industry is rife for high staff turnover but part of working with KH Spa Consultancy is about creating a brand and a business that embraces stability and longevity for your staff as well as your clients.

Hiring the wrong staff is a costly but avoidable mistake if you approach it properly from the beginning. This means that you need to really evaluate the following points before finalising your staffing projections:

  • Go through the proposed outline of your treatment menu and look at what number of therapists you need to deliver these treatments consistently.
  • How are you going to ensure that you are choosing the right staff and that your spa is the right fit for them? How long is the interview process and how much of this process will give you a chance to observe them in a spa setting?
  • Consider where your new staff members are going to be trained. Are you going to train them in-house and what does this training programme look like, what will it need to cover and how long will it take?
  • How flexible are your expectations of staff and the hours you need them for each week. In my experience, a lot of my best staff were parents or therapists part time and really relied on the flexibility that I offered which in turn meant I got the best out of them.

As an example of the above, when I first started working with Steiner Leisure, I had two weeks of training during which they decided which cruise line I would be best suited to. They considered my personal attributes and how these would allow me to connect with the passengers on each of the various cruises before deciding which ship I would be embarking on. This attention to detail meant that I felt seen and valued as an employee and that my employer felt confident in their hiring of me – a win win! 

With my help, we will develop a plan for all new staff and devote genuine time to their onboarding so that we avoid hiring for hiring sake.

Part of opening a luxury spa with KH Spa Consultancy is about gaining an extra pair of eyes for your business and being able to confidently project who you need to hire in order to make sure your spa fulfills your clients expectations.

If you would like some help understanding where you can better manage your staff turnover or have a spa build in mind and want to hone in on your own staff projections then let’s chat!

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