UCT students develop app to help reduce queues at beauty and hair salons
Four students from the University of Cape Town (UCT) has developed The Fleeker platform, which allows users to schedule appointments with hairstylists, barbers, make-up artists and nail technicians – and beat the long in-salon queues with the click of a button.
“I spent a lot of time in queues at my barbershop and it made me think of ways to improve and streamline this system, just to make it more convenient for customers,” said Asonele Gevenga, UCT economics and finance student and co-founder of Fleeker.
As personal care services start to reopen from this week, the idea is expected to be a win-win for all and just what the Covid-19 epicentre (the Western Cape) needs.
Social distancing, limited customer numbers and strict hygiene protocols mean trips to the barbershop, hair salon and beauty spa will look a lot different now as the industry reopens under lockdown “advanced” Level 3.
Gevenga said Fleeker requires stylists to register online by completing a simple registration form and this process takes just a few minutes. There are no upfront costs involved, but 10% of every successful booking goes to Fleeker.
Once stylists have signed up, the platform’s location-sharing functionality ensures that potential clients can select a therapist in close proximity to them.
Fleeker currently lists a range of local businesses.
“As part of our mission to improve, while adhering to strict health guidelines during this pandemic and still accommodating our customers [stylists] and their customers, we had to make some changes,” he said.
Working from a client’s home is one such improvement the business has made; it enhances customer comfort and “ensures better control” as it eliminates the crowded salon.
“This means the stylist will have more control over the health and safety measures they have in place, like sanitising, because it’s a one-on-one service,” added Gevenga.
Fleeker also introduced a cashless payment system, which allows users to transact online, making cash payments a thing of the past.
A unique built-in feature enables stylists to track their monthly income, making financial planning a lot easier.
“We’ve received such great feedback from our clients, as well their clients, especially during this time. This has [reinforced] our commitment to ensure all stylists, big and small, have a fighting chance in the market and are able to connect with customers in an efficient way,” he said.