Whether you’ve always dreamed of starting a human resources consulting franchise or you’re completely new to the idea, if you follow these tips, you could be running your own successful business in no time.
The global human resources industry is thought to be worth over £24 billion (consultancy.uk), making up around 10 percent of the entire consultancy market. This is clearly a lucrative market for prospective businessowners, but what exactly is human resource consulting?
‘Human resources’ refers to the improvement of anything relating to the human side of a business. Businesses rely on their employees, so identifying problem areas and implementing solutions can boost a company’s efficiency significantly. Human resource professionals work on staff recruitment and training, engagement and development. This might involve analysing a business’s policies to ensure compliance, creating reports, suggesting and managing changes in a business’s workflow, running training sessions or redesigning a benefits and compensation scheme.
Reasons why starting a human resources consulting franchise is a good idea
- Guiding others through their problems and having a positive impact on their life can be hugely rewarding.
- The human resources profession is always evolving. Take, for example, the current unprecedented COVID-19 crisis; the way that we work is changing massively and at such a rapid rate. Who do business owners need to make sure their operations are running as smoothly and effectively as possible? Human resources consulting businesses.
Top tips for starting a human resources consulting franchise
1. Make sure you’re right for the job
There are certain skills you need to be a successful human resources consultant. There are two sides to the role. There’s the side that puts human matters first, understanding what makes people tick and how small changes can impact individual workers’ productivity. And then the logistical side – how can these changes be implemented in the real world and in compliance with workplace policies and the law? However, human resources consultants should be problem-solvers at heart.
The best HR professionals truly care about others, are committed to resolving issues in a way that preserves relationships and, quite simply, exemplify the characteristics of good human beings. - Carrie Luxem, CEO at Restaurant HR Group and carrieluxem.com
2. Decide what route you want to take
You might think you’d like to become a human resources consultant or, if you’re even more ambitious, set up a human resources consulting business, but there are lots of decisions to make before you can get started. Human resources consulting businesses vary hugely, and each are suited to different purposes. Ask yourself:
- Do I want to be self-employed or run a human resources consulting franchise?
The answer will depend on your financial aspirations and your suitability to manage a business. If you’re inexperienced in business ownership, or if you simply want to be able to rely on a tried and tested business model, you should consider joining a franchise. Weigh up the pros and cons of starting an independent business and starting a franchise unit to decide which is best for you.
If you opt to become a franchisee, you’ll be able to buy the rights to use an existing company’s business format, brand name, trademarks and tools. You’ll also be given initial training and ongoing support to make sure your business is the best it can be.
- Will I work from home or hire office space?
If you hire staff as part of your human resources consulting franchise, you will probably need to locate suitable office space. However, as we’ve found out from our reaction to the coronavirus pandemic, working remotely has actually proven to be very successful for lots of businesses, so it’s worth keeping this in mind.
- Will I be a ‘generalised’ HR consultant or specialise in specific areas?
While it might seem advantageous to offer a large number of services, your business might be more highly regarded if you offer expertise in a small number of specific areas, as clients are more likely to turn to you over a generalised firm if you appear to have more in-depth knowledge on a subject. If you choose the latter option, you should focus on developing a particular skillset, so you have the right information and tools to solve clients’ problems in the most effective way.
3. Gain knowledge and experience
Launching an HR consulting business involves much of the same steps as launching any other kind of business, but let’s start with the basics. You should first get good qualifications and experience. This may mean getting a degree in business management, administration, finance or, of course, human resources.
On top of this, you’ll need to spend time working as part of an HR team in some form. This will help you to identify the elements that make a successful HR enterprise and the potential pitfalls that you could come across when you start your own HR business. Not only will this step give you a great basis of knowledge that you can use to kickstart your own business, but it will also enable you to create valuable connections in the industry.
4. Create a business plan
Once you’ve got qualifications and experience, you can start planning your next career move. Think about your ambitions for your company and draft a business plan. Include information on where you’ll be based, who you’ll target and your financial forecasts.
Even when you opt to join a franchise, you’ll still need to create a business plan. The difference is, your focus will be on how to get the most out of a company’s new unit in a new location. And, of course, you’ll get help from your franchisor.
5. Get capital
Unless you’re in the small minority of prospective business owners who have the capital to launch their business without formally borrowing money, you’ll have to secure a business loan from an official lender. To do this, you’ll need to have a rock-solid business plan so the lender can see that you’ve made all the appropriate preparations to protect your business from insolvency.
At this stage, you should also consult a specialist financial advisor, who will be able to review your business plan and flag up any potential issues.
>> Read more:
6. Recruit staff
Once you’ve secured the capital you’ll need to launch your business, you can start recruiting your employees. You might find it helpful to hire staff with the same specialisms or different skillsets to each other, depending on your business model.
You should also think about candidates’ personalities during the recruitment process. If you’ve started your own business, think about the ethos you’d like to create, and what type of character would suit it. If you’ve joined a franchise, consider its values and whether they’re reflected in potential employees.
I believe an HR business should always start with the audience (e.g. small businesses, HR leaders… It’s 1000 percent easier to sell a solution to a specific audience, than to come up with a solution then try to search the right audience. – Alan Collins, founder of Success in HR
7. Find clients
No matter whether you are part of a franchise or an independent start-up, you’ll need to start building a client base from scratch in your territory. The difference is that there may already be brand awareness linked to a franchise business, which will help you appeal to new clients quicker.
After time, you might be able to rely on word of mouth to get new clients but, until then, you’ll need to use self-promotion, local marketing tools or networking to get business leads. If you provide impressive services, you should have a steady stream of clients and income before too long, and your HR consulting business will be up and running.
Like what you see? Start a human resources consulting franchise
Follow these steps and you should be able to start your own thriving human resources consulting franchise unit in no time. Our UK franchise directory is filled with opportunites from a wide range of sectors, including some great consulting franchises.
Becky Martin, Point Franchise ©