Spa Industry Advice for Graduates

Career advice for graduates


For young graduates beginning to forge their way in the beauty or spa industry, or someone returning to work after a break, understanding more about the career opportunities available to them and finding the right job isn’t always easy. With nearly 40 years of experience in the beauty and spa industry, Isabel Roos currently serves as CIDESCO examiner and managing director of the ISA Carstens Academy in South Africa. Having run her own training academy and teaching the CIDESCO diploma since 1978, Roos is aware of the numerous options available to students across the industry and now shares her knowledge on guiding her students, from helping evaluate career options, to advising on job applications and securing employment. “Many opportunities await students after completing your studies,” says Roos. “The most popular option is being a therapist in a spa or salon environment where the key performance area is to build your own clientele. You will be looking to ensure that these clients return to you personally on a monthly basis for the improvement and maintenance of their skin and body conditions. After all, the focus of a therapist is to improve the health of the skin and assist the client in maintaining this condition.” Roos shares her helpful hints on how to approach the spa and beauty industry as a recent graduate.

What is the best way of finding jobs and opportunities?

“The easiest and most popular way is to search on the internet for recruitment companies in the beauty and spa sector, of which there are many,” says Roos. “They will be familiar with the industry qualifications and many of them operate on a global basis so if you’re looking to work abroad, they will be able to advise. They can also assist with interview tips and assist with your CV compilation which is normally a free service to the therapist.”

How should job seekers prepare for interviews?

“Find out about the company where you are going to be interviewed,” says Roos. “Visit their website to find out about the size of the company, the owner, manager, and the vision of the company. Be on time for the interview. The dress code should be strictly office wear and make sure you have all necessary documentation with you such as proof of qualifications. Be honest at all times during the interview, especially about your salary expectation if asked. Ask relevant questions regarding the opportunity you are applying for now, i.e. office hours, weekend work, leave. Do not sound over eager but equally sound very interested in the position.”

What do businesses primarily look in their recruits?

“Companies want to know that you’re interested in working for them and will fit in well as part of their team,” says Roos. “Show a willingness to share your expertise but also show that you are keen to learn and develop too.”

If you’re considering self-employment. Here are some factors you should consider.

1. Be sure that your personal infrastructure will allow you to work irregular hours.

2. Set a business plan and ensure that it is viable.

3. Know that you will be working very long hours.

4. Know that it will not always go according to plan—be flexible.

5. Be patient—it takes some time before you will show profit.

6. Don’t hire too many employees too soon, rather do it yourself.

7. Ask for advice from as many people in the industry as possible. Most people are happy to share their own experiences and advice.