A good infrastructure is imperative to building a successful franchise. Though this can be an intimidating prospect, once in place, you’ll find yourself in a solid position to achieve success. Here are some key franchisor tips on how to develop the right franchise infrastructure.
As a franchisor, you’ll have a lot of responsibilities on your plate. Still, if you can do it right, expanding your business will be incredibly rewarding, and you’ll be able to watch it grow with confidence and excitement. Creating a quality franchise infrastructure from the start will allow you to move forwards easily.
A solid franchise infrastructure sets up your business for success
A franchise infrastructure refers to the organisational structures and arrangements that exist within your franchise. The structures and arrangements which allow your franchise to function, expand and turn a profit, which, as a franchisor, are your responsibility. Several factors make up infrastructure, such as:
- The training programmes you offer
- The support schemes you offer
- The franchise sales process
- Supply chain logistics
- Marketing guidelines and practices
- Legal teams and guidelines
To be successful, a potential franchisor must have built their own business, no matter what size, on a sound foundation of well-trained personnel, good marketing techniques and an adequate working capital structure. These foundation blocks are the same for a successful franchise operation as well, but as a franchisor, you’ll need to view them from a different perspective and utilize different skills.
Building a franchise business in four steps
When you’re deciding whether or not to franchise your business, be sure to do as much research as you can in order to discover whether it’s the right choice for you. There’s a wealth of information available out there, and once you have the knowledge in your back pocket, franchising your business in a few steps should be easy enough...
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- The 8 Primary Roles and Responsibilities of a Franchisor
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1. Get planning
Organisational and advance-planning skills will be key to the successful running of your franchise, and once you’ve decided to take the leap, it’ll be time to get down to the planning. Create a business plan which details:
- The structure of the business
- The profile of an ideal franchisee with the business
- Available territories, and how to allocate them
- Available staffing resources, and how to allocate them
- The proposed system of franchisee support
- Financial projections
- Cash flow forecasts
- Franchisee service fees
2. Make sure your business can be franchised
This might sound like a pretty basic step, but arguably, it’s the most important. Once you’ve crafted that business plan, you’ll need to look at it and decide whether your business will truly suit franchising. Your best insight into whether your business will be successful, though? Test it out for a year. Let experience guide your decisions and perceptions.
You could spend a huge amount of cash on resources to measure market demand, like advertising campaigns and focus groups for product testing and brand perception workshopping and so on, but the most effective research will be the first-hand data you collect by getting the franchise off the ground. Start small, test what works and what doesn’t, and grow in line with your confidence in the business model.
3. Create the business manual
Now, it’ll be about time to create a business manual. In many ways the manual will be similar to the business plan, but less speculative. It’s not a plan now – it’s a concrete operational guide. Set out detailed explanations of your franchise infrastructure; this way your business manual can be:
- Support for the day-to-day running of a franchise
- A good training tool for franchisors to use with new franchisees
- A good training tool for franchisees to use with new employees
- A basis to return to when any business information is required
>> Read more:
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 1)
- Franchising 101: The Official Franchise Start Up Checklist (Part 2)
- New Year, New Career: No Better Time Than Now to Start a Franchise Today
- Franchising 101: 8 Signs You're Ready to Start a Franchise
- Starting a New Business Doesn't Always Lead to Immediate Success: Here Are 5 Ways to Change That
- It's Never Too Late to Start a New Business
4. Franchisee recruitment
When it comes to franchisee recruitment, a lot of responsibility falls on the franchisor. It’s a crucial job, and getting it wrong will have consequences for the business. Thankfully, there are many resources available out there to help franchisors determine exactly what they’re looking for in a franchisee, so they can partner with the right person every time.
The most common recruitment channels are [British Franchise Association]:
- The franchisor’s website
- Other franchising websites, like Point Franchise
- The British Franchise Association website
- Social media sites
- Mail shots
- Magazine advertising
- Franchising seminars and open days
- Word of mouth
To achieve a seamless interview experience, make sure you carefully plan both marketing and interviewing techniques. While setting up a franchise, if in doubt, always seek professional advice. With effort and hard work, you’ll be able to overcome all the common franchising hurdles.
Running a franchise successfully takes dedication and hard work
So, you’ve successfully set up your franchise, developed a strong infrastructure and got things off the ground. You’re running your own business with the help of franchisees, and it all seems to be going well. What next? How do you ensure the longevity of your brand?
If you’ve managed to develop the right infrastructure, your business should keep ticking along as planned. But the difference between a thriving franchise and one that is simply treading water? That comes down to you, the franchisor, and to all your franchisees. Good franchisors know how to innovate, and can bring franchisees along for the ride. Most really successful franchisors share similar personality traits and qualities:
- A passion for the work
- An honest and open style of communication
- An ability to listen, support, adapt and lead
- An ability to value the work of others and work collaboratively
Utilise the qualities you have that make you uniquely qualified for the position, and make sure you continue you to:
- Offer training to franchisees and employees
- Give financial guidance to franchisees when they need it
- Encourage franchise growth at every level
- Offer support at every level
It takes great strength, persistence and determination to build any business and there are certain personality traits that most successful entrepreneurs possess – passion, motivation, optimism and the willingness to put themselves out there and take a risk. However not all great entrepreneurs make great franchisors – it’s a whole different ball game and demands a different set of skills and qualities.
Turn a business into a franchise with the right infrastructure
With all the information above, you should feel confident in your ability to develop the right infrastructure for your franchise. If you’re looking for more franchisor tips, stay with Point Franchise to discover how to build a profitable franchise in two years, or to find out how to effectively set franchisees up for success.
Cara Squires, Point Franchise ©