Ockino Petrie, marketing and promotions manager, JNSBL
Mr Hoffman Grant, deputy manager, of the HEART College of Beauty Services (HCBS), has urged members of the beauty sector to be certified, so that the local industry will be in line with international standards.
He was addressing participants in this year’s JN Small Business Loans (JNSBL) Barber and Beauty Battle during a seminar, at the JN Conference Centre, on Duke Street, in Kingston on Tuesday, June 19.
“I always say to skills persons when we go to do assessments that we all want to work in an industry of which we are proud. And, the only way we can achieve this for all of us to work together, and ensure that the standards are maintained,” stated Mr Hoffman.
“We can no longer view this industry as one where we come to ‘eat a food,’ because when we visit our Caribbean neighbours, we will discover that their standards are high. Therefore, we must agree the level we want, to be able to move the industry forward.”
Mr Grant emphasised that persons in the sector would be certified, via on-the-job assessment, or through courses at an institution. He explained that this year, finalists in the JNSBL Barber and Beauty Battle will not be certified on the day of the finals; however, the contestants will have several options to earn their certification.
“We invite participants to visit our offices; and then, an Agent will visit their locations. There is also online certification; and courses at the HCBS, which are held during the days, in the evenings, and on weekends,” he outlined.
Earlier, Mr Ockino Petrie, marketing and promotions manager, at JNSBL; and, chairman of the JNSBL Barber and Beauty Planning Committee, encouraged members of the industry to familiarise themselves with trends in the sector.
“Based on research which JNSBL carried out, the local beauty industry is worth approximately $5 billion. This figure includes sales of products, custom fees, training, and day-to-day transactions. No longer is it ‘a little industry’ to be frowned on, it is big business. Therefore, I encourage everyone to familiarise themselves with developments in the sector, which also includes opportunities for funding and further training,” he advised.
In supporting Mr Petrie’s call for further training, Mr Grant informed that the agency would be partnering with the University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech) to offer an Associate degree for industry members who wish to gain advanced qualifications.
“We are encouraging persons to gain Level II, or Level III certifications; and, we are in discussions with UTech to offer an Associate degree in image consulting and fashion designing. We hope to commence that course by September of this year. That will be good, as we sometimes are challenged to find competent and qualified persons in the industry to teach. Based on that challenge, we are seeking to get our industry recognised at the university level,” he stated.
The JNSBL Barber and Beauty seminar was mounted to inform the 24 finalists in this year’s competition about salon management practices; financial planning, opportunities for funding; as well as, educational trends in the sector.
An added component to this year‘s seminar, was the division of the contestants into groups. Each group was required to come up with a business plan and pitch for funding. At the end, the winning group, ‘In The Streets Mobile Beauty Salon’, comprising six persons, received $50,000, for their mobile salon, designed to serve patrons in hospitals, golden age homes, as well as the disabled.