7 Questions with Hand & Stone’s National Recruiting Director

One of the many ways Hand & Stone supports their franchise owners is to assist them in the recruitment process. Our National Recruiting Director, Rita Belov, is there every step of the way to educate our franchisees to be able to hand-pick top-tier talent for their spas. I had a chance to sit down with Rita to learn more about the many ways she and her team support our new spa owners.

Samantha Tacca: How early do you reach out to a new franchise owner?

Rita Belov: I try to reach out to them very early on in the development process because recruiting is such a large part of their business. I want to get as much information in front of them as I can because we use so many different tools to make sure they find the right candidates for their spas. I also schedule biweekly calls while their spas are in development so I can make sure they did not miss any information.

ST: What tools do you provide franchisees?

RB: We use an array of recruitment tools, specifically, to find massage therapists. Our ultimate applicant tracking system is CareerPlug; we also utilize Indeed, Glassdoor, and LinkedIn to post and sponsor ads for our open positions. Our newest tool is Phenom, which is an AI tool that includes a CRM, chatbot, automated interview scheduler, and more.

I’m also in midst of updating our Recruiting and Hiring Guide, where franchisees will be able to download presentations of all aspects of the recommended recruiting processes. Some examples of what it covers are, when and where to advertise for your job openings, how many people you need to open your spa, social media outreach, and more.

ST: Is there anything else you utilize to find top talent for our spas?

RB: Yes!What I have found to be successful is going to massage therapy schools and talking to current students to build relationships early on, which is why I reach out to our owners as early as I do, so they can plant the seeds with the students. We also use MPower, which is a school that uses our spas as classrooms. In states where online education is possible, they include online education for state-approved classes. When a massage therapist goes through this schooling, graduates, and joins Hand & Stone, the franchisees reimburse them for tuition. It’s a win, win!

ST: What is the biggest challenge with recruiting?

RB: This industry has expanded so rapidly that there is a large demand for massage therapists, so we must be very competitive when it comes to finding qualified candidates. This is why the brand must have a very strong EVP - employer value proposition, specifically because massage therapy is such an employee-centric market.

ST: Where do you think the future of massage therapy is heading?

RB: I believe the demand for massages will even out with the supply of massage therapists. I think more of the workforce will show interest in this industry.

ST: Why is Hand & Stone the best place for a massage therapist to work?

RB: Culture and flexibility! We have a phenomenal brand and owners. The reason why people become massage therapists is that they are nurturers by nature, and our franchisees nurture their employees. Many of our owners provide continuing education, great benefits, and consistent support, but I’d say number one is awesome flexibility.

ST: We’ve talked a lot about massage therapists, but what’s your view on the availability of estheticians?

RB: There’s more availability with estheticians because our brand has such a robust aesthetics program. Our competitors do not offer as many esthetics services as we do. A lot of the time, our franchisee’s new estheticians are surprised at how much we offer our clients and can’t wait to expand their education in new esthetics fields.

Just like our massage therapists, most owners also offer their estheticians continuing education, great benefits, consistent support, and flexibility.

If you’re interested in becoming a massage therapist at a Hand & Stone Franchise location, visit our career page https://handandstonecareers.com/