There is an ever-growing aging population in the UK. This means that the demand for home-based care services for the elderly is higher than ever. If you’ve always considered starting your own business in the sector but have never known how to get started, read this article to find out the necessary steps to take.
We all want to make sure that our loved ones are looked after in their old age. Residential care homes can be the best and safest option for those who have complex health conditions. However, there are also plenty of alternatives that allow our elderly relatives to stay in their own homes while getting the care they need. If you’re eager to put your passion for caring for people into practice while reaping the benefits of being your own boss, why not consider starting your own elderly care franchise?
There are almost 12 million people aged 65 and over in the UK and 1.6 million of these are over 85. As more and more individuals are surpassing the latter age, it’s thought that in the next 20 years the number of people with complex care needs is going to increase significantly. When the population ages, their care needs usually become more complex and they need to use the services of a home care business. Every year, home care is provided to more than 350,000 older people in the UK.
8 steps for starting your own elderly care franchise
The idea of moving into a care home and losing all sense of independence can be off-putting to older people. Whether your relative needs a hand with the weekly shop and getting out of bed in the morning, or simply a bit of company around the house, there are plenty of franchises that provide compassionate, professional home care services. Here’s how to start your own!
Step 1. Decide what services you are going to offer
Write down all of the services you intend to offer - this will depend on what is in demand in your local area. You could consider emergency care, housekeeping or domestic work, companionship, personal care (like washing and dressing) and companionship.
You’ll also need to consider whether you provide care in 15-minute visits, all day, round the clock, or all three! This will, of course, depend on what experience your staff have and what they’re qualified to do, as well as what your clients need.
>> Read more:
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- Home help services: What franchise businesses are there?
- The Qualities of a Successful Home Helper
- Care Home Jobs - Do It Yourself with a Franchise
- Home Care Franchises: Franchise Opportunities in the UK
Step 2. Name your elderly care business
Think of a name that is memorable and reflects the brand philosophy. You could include your own name, or the name of your town. Double check it’s not been registered already.
Did you know? Every year, home care is provided to more than 350,000 older people in the UK.
Step 3. Create a business plan
When launching any type of business, creating a solid business plan is one of the first things you need to do. This is a fundamental step and a significant amount of time needs to go into making it detailed and accurate. You can see our full guide of how to develop a franchise business plan here, but the structure should look like this:
- Executive summary
- Description of the business
- Services you’ll provide
- Marketing plan
- Management and organisation
- Operational plan
- Financial plan
Step 4. Comply with the necessary regulations
Care agency franchises in the UK need to have a registered manager. They manage the daily running of the business and ensure that it complies with regulations. This doesn’t have to be you; you can choose to recruit a member of senior staff straight away. The role requires one of the following and another qualification that shows a practical understanding of the care setting e.g. a health and social care qualification.
- An NVQ Level 4 in Leadership and Management for Care Services
- A Registered Manager’s Award (RMA)
- A QCF Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Health and Social Care
Any member of staff that provides care to clients needs to have completed common inductions standards (CIS) training.
Step 5. Registering with the CQC
You need to register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) before you can continue setting up the business. Both the elderly care business and the registered manager need to be registered. Get started by visiting the CQC website here.
Step 6. Insure your elderly care business
After all, your client’s wellbeing is in your and your employee’s hands, so you’ll need to have insurance in case any legal claims are filed against you. Look into public liability insurance, employers’ liability insurance, medical malpractice cover, professional indemnity insurance and treatments liability insurance.
Step 7. Find your team of employees
You need to spend time finding a team of staff that represent your brand philosophy. Due to the nature of elderly care, your staff will need to possess certain qualities in order suit the role. Check out another one of our articles here to see if your interested applicants have got what it takes.
Step 8. Find your clients
In order to attract clients, your marketing strategies need to be up to scratch. Here are four ideas to get you started:
- Launch a website. Get your name out there with an informative and clear website. Then, register with Google so potential clients can find your contact details easily.
- Distribute leaflets. Create professional leaflets and deliver them in letterboxes in your local area.
- Join health groups and associations in your local area. Reach out to local doctors and hospitals and form a relationship with them. With some luck, they will recommend you to their patients.
- Know what your differentiating factors are. Why should potential clients and employees choose you?
>> Read more:
Elderly care franchises in the UK
If you don’t want to start your own elderly care franchise from scratch, there are lots of existing home care franchises to invest in. You can choose one based on whether ethical practice, financial returns or the uniqueness of the opportunity are at the top of your list, as well as the type of care you’d like to bring to your local community. Here are two of our top picks.
Radfield Home Care
If a franchise that prioritises the wellbeing of both its clients and staff sounds most appealing to you, Radfield Home Care could be the perfect match. The family-owned home care franchise has been in business for over 35 years and has the support of an experienced GP.
Why choose Radfield?
It’s the only healthcare organisation in the UK to achieve certified B-Corporation status, thanks to its strong, value-based business model. It also runs a ‘Caring for Carers’ rewards programme to thank its dedicated staff for their incredible work.
Do you need any experience to join?
Those looking to join the franchise won’t need any previous experience in the care sector, as comprehensive training will be provided for all. Your role is to grow the business through networking and marketing.
What is the investment?
The franchise package costs £30,000 and the total investment required is £80,000. In return you’ll receive business launch support, marketing materials, cloud based management systems, HR advice and more!
The franchise Home Instead has gone one step further in its quest to find the best individuals to help deliver care across its 190 UK franchises. With 1,200 across 14 countries, it is the largest and most recognised home care provider in the world.
What sets it apart from competitors?
It has launched an annual ‘You Can Care’ week, which celebrates those who deliver exceptional care across the franchise and encourages people to consider a career in care.
Backed by MP Caroline Dinenage, who is the current Minister of State for Care, the awareness campaign has also been launched online and it’s hoped that 2019’s ‘You Can Care’ week will match the success of last year’s, which saw 5,500 new caregivers join the franchise.
Who is this opportunity right for?
Home Instead is still looking for new franchisees to join its incredibly successful international network, and with an estimated £2million revenue after just two years for those who are willing to put in the work, it’s a business opportunity that’s financially and morally rewarding.
How much does it cost?
You’ll need to make a total investment of £90,000 to be accepted onto this franchise opportunity. In return, you’ll take part in an intensive training programme for the first six months, then after you’ve established your own network of connections, you’ll be transferred to its Business Performance team for ongoing support.
Make a difference to the lives of older people with an elderly care franchise
Whether you’re starting your own elderly care franchise from scratch or want the easier route of investing into an existing one, be sure to consider these 8 steps to success. If you want to browse a larger selection of our elderly home care franchises you can see our full list here.
Becky Martin, Point Franchise ©