Unit of competency details

SIBBNLS206A - Use electric file equipment for nails (Release 2)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to SHBBNLS005 - Use electric file equipment for nail servicesUnit updated to the Standards for Training Packages. Updated content of Application Statement, Elements and Performance Criteria. 24/Sep/2015
Supersedes and is equivalent to WRBBS305B - Use electrical equipment for nailsE Updated and equivalent to WRBBS305B 08/Dec/2010

ReleaseRelease date
2 (this release) 12/Dec/2011
(View details for release 1) 09/Dec/2010


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110301 Beauty Therapy 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 110301 Beauty Therapy 09/Dec/2010 
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Modification History

Not applicable.

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to assess the needs of clients and use electric file equipment in conjunction with artificial nail application services. The operator selects from a range of file bits to achieve filed nail areas where required.

Application of the Unit

Electric files are used in nail salons and beauty salons offering a variety of natural, artificial gel, acrylic and resin nail enhancement services.

This unit applies to nail technicians and other beauty workers who interpret observations and information, and follow known routines in order to safely use electric files as part of artificial nail services.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.



Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance Criteria 

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

1 Prepare the client.

1.1 Prepare service area, client  and self according to relevant legislation and codes  and workplace policies and procedures .

1.2 Establish client needs and expectations to provide advice and recommendations for treatment plan .

1.3 Assess nail condition and note areas of nail requiring special treatment.

1.4 Identify and explain any contraindications  and refer client to an appropriate professional  where required.

1.5 Select a finished nail shape and style according to agreed treatment plan.

1.6 Select electric file and correct burs and bits  to suit treatment plan.

2 Use electric file equipment.

2.1 Prepare equipment according to the treatment plan, client requirements and manufacturer instructions.

2.2 Use personal protective equipment  for client and self where required according to manufacturers’ safety data sheets and workplace safety procedures.

2.3 Apply electric file procedures  according to manufacturer instructions and safety data at appropriate stages in nail service.

2.4 Seek feedback from client during treatment and take remedial action  where indicated.

2.5 Dispose of waste  according to relevant legislation and workplace policies and procedures.

2.6 Evaluate finished result against treatment plan.

2.7 Clean and maintain equipment according to manufacturer instructions and relevant legislation, and workplace equipment cleaning and maintenance procedures.

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

The following skills must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • technical skills to:
  • recognise and respond to contraindications and adverse effects
  • use electric file with accuracy and safety
  • select and apply a range of burs and bits according to treatment plan and different nail products and services
  • alter treatment plan to include and implement remedial filing actions
  • clean, disinfect and maintain electric files and attachments according to manufacturer instructions, industry guidelines and relevant health regulations
  • literacy skills to read and apply product information and manufacturers' safety data sheets
  • numeracy skills to calculate required product quantities and service time.

Required knowledge 

The following knowledge must be assessed as part of this unit:

  • relevant health and hygiene regulations
  • relevant occupational health and safety regulations and requirements
  • infection control procedures and application of universal precautions
  • workplace procedures in regard to using electrical equipment for nail treatments
  • appearance of contraindications and adverse effects
  • differences in various electric file systems
  • various styles of chuck, revs per minute (RPM), range or speed versus variable speed
  • effect of RPM and torque and their relationship to client's treatment plan
  • effect of changes created by complementary nail shapes
  • workplace product and equipment range
  • care and cleaning requirements for:
  • artificial nail electric file and its equipment
  • implements and service area
  • methods of venting air
  • structural and aesthetic requirements for artificial nails
  • effects, advantages and disadvantages of using electrical equipment
  • electrical currents, especially safety aspects
  • safety aspects of electric file usage.

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the following is essential:

  • interpreting and applying manufacturer instructions for tools and electrical equipment
  • applying knowledge of differences in style and application and variety of industry-approved professional electric files
  • selecting and applying electric file, bits, burs and techniques to be used to achieve treatment plan
  • selecting and applying corrective or remedial measures when using an electric file
  • using time effectively and controlling product waste
  • evaluating use of electric file equipment in nail treatments
  • cleaning, disinfecting and maintaining electric files and attachments according to manufacturer instructions, industry guidelines and relevant health regulations.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure:

  • that competency is consistently demonstrated over a period of time and observed by the assessor or the technical expert working in partnership with the assessor as described in the Assessment Guidelines
  • that competency is demonstrated in the workplace or a simulated workplace environment in a range of situations which may include client interruptions and involvement in other related activities normally expected in the workplace.

Assessment must ensure access to:

  • a fully equipped artificial nail services area, which includes as a minimum:
  • effective exhaust system for nail chemical fumes
  • manicure table
  • operator chair
  • client chair
  • nail table lamp
  • electric file with burs and bits
  • implement sanitising tray
  • hand and nail sanitiser at each table
  • desk lamp desk mats
  • desk towels
  • personal protective equipment, including:
  • face masks
  • goggles
  • gloves
  • products and electric file equipment from a professional range
  • appropriate cleaning and disinfection products and equipment
  • relevant workplace documentation including:
  • manufacturer's equipment instructions
  • product instructions
  • manufacturer safety data sheets
  • workplace policies and procedures manuals
  • a range of clients with different artificial nail service requirements.

For further guidance on the use of an appropriate simulated environment, refer to the Assessment Guidelines in this Training Package.

Methods of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • observation of learners performing a range of tasks in an actual or simulated work environment, over sufficient time to demonstrate handling of a range of contingencies, including:
  • selecting appropriate equipment and nail products according to client needs
  • asking questions to elicit feedback from clients during treatment and taking remedial action if required
  • using electric file equipment with accuracy and safety
  • disposing of waste according to workplace policies and procedures
  • written and oral questioning appropriate to the language and literacy level of the learner, to assess knowledge and understanding of the use of an electric file and its burs and bits, including the safe use of electric files on a range of gels and acrylics, resins and natural nails
  • completion of workplace documentation relevant to use of electric file equipment for nails
  • third-party reports from technical experts
  • completion of self-paced learning materials, including personal reflection and feedback from a trainer, coach or supervisor.

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • SIBBNLS203A Apply ultraviolet gel nail enhancement
  • SIBBNLS204A Apply acrylic nail enhancement
  • SIRXOHS001A Apply safe working practices.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Clients  may include:

  • new or regular clients with routine or special needs
  • people from a range of social, cultural and ethnic backgrounds and with varying physical and mental abilities.

Relevant legislation and codes  may include:

  • federal, state or territory, and local health and hygiene regulations
  • occupational health and safety legislation
  • industry codes of practice.

Workplace policies and procedures  may include:

  • health and hygiene
  • workplace electrical equipment range and manufacturer instructions and product safety data
  • workplace time frame allocated for service
  • methods of venting air.

Treatment plan  may include:

  • required service
  • areas requiring special treatment
  • artificial products
  • tools and equipment
  • follow-up procedures.

Contraindications  may include:

  • bacterial, viral or fungal infections
  • warts
  • inflamed skin
  • visible non-normal nails
  • rashes
  • blisters, corns and calluses
  • heel fissures
  • bunions
  • hammer toes
  • circulatory problems.

Appropriate professional  may include:

  • medical practitioner
  • complementary therapist.

Electric file and correct burs and bits  must include:

  • variable speed electric file
  • burs or bits, including:
  • diamond burs or bits
  • carbide burs or bits
  • sanding bands and mandril.

Personal protective equipment  must include:

  • safety goggles
  • glasses
  • masks.

Personal protective equipment  may include:

  • table with air ventilating facility.

Electric file procedures  may include:

  • preparing for French backfills
  • preparing for infill or refills
  • shortening and reshaping
  • removing excess product under nails
  • refining surface structure.

Remedial action  may include:

  • adjusting RPM or speed of electric file
  • modifying pressure of handpiece
  • changing selection of burs and bits
  • altering position of handpiece.

Waste  may include:

  • filing dust
  • desk mats.

Unit Sector(s)


Competency field

Nail Services