“The team at Summit Salon Business Center have come up with an innovative scheduling strategy designed to improve employees’ work/life balance that they’ve dubbed “smart scheduling” or “double shifting.” Under the plan, 32 hours a week is considered full-time; employees work four 6-hour shifts, and one 8-hour shift per week.

“Physically, our industry is quite demanding,” explains Heather Bagby, Summit’s vice president of business development. “Many of our service providers stand on their feet all day, and most utilize tools and body positions that are hard on their back, arms, and legs. We believe working six-hour shifts promotes a healthier lifestyle. Emotionally, it is a win-win. Working 32 hours per week gives employees ample time to focus on their personal lives without compromising their careers.”

They recommend dividing Monday through Thursday into two shifts — a morning shift, which typically runs from 8:30 to 2:30, and an evening shift, which runs from 3:00 to 9:00. A mom working the day shift can, in most cases, take her kids to school and pick them up, Bagby notes.

“Typically it takes 12 to 18 months to implement and fully double-shift a salon business. Salon owners first need to track evening turn-aways and quantify the opportunities available in the later evening hours,” she says. “The benefits far outweigh the initial discomfort that comes with any kind of change. You will be providing a higher quality of life, maximizing salon productivity, offering hours that cater to your community, increasing profitability, and enhancing customer service.”

For more information, go to www.summitsalon.com.

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