Franchises come in all shapes and sizes, but they’ve got one thing in common: they’re defined by their staff. In today’s competitive business environment, brands must understand the importance of hiring the right employees in order to see success. Here’s our guide to finding the best franchise employees.
No matter how much emphasis you put on other aspects of your business, your employees are the face of your brand. Like it or not, the choices you make when it comes to recruitment can have a huge effect on the future of your franchise - for better or for worse.
We’ve created a general staff recruitment guide, but here we’re looking at the importance of hiring the right employees to represent your franchise.
The importance of hiring the right employees
Have you ever stopped to think how your customers perceive your brand when they come face-to-face with your employees? If your answer to this question is ‘no’, you’re not alone.
Many business owners know how to hire an employee who can do the job on paper, but some don’t appreciate just how much workers can influence their brand’s reputation. Employees are usually the first people customers engage with when approaching a business, but they’re often left at the back of the queue when bosses consider its brand image.
So, why is it so important to know how to hire good employees?
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- Often, bosses can use customer service as a differentiator in the business landscape, as employees help set a business apart from its competitors. If you provide the same products and services as someone else, the human element of the transaction can put you one step ahead of other brands.
- An interaction with an inexperienced, rude or downbeat staff member can instantly turn a customer against your brand, which can have a significant knock-on effect. Even if the employee only disappoints one customer, that person may tell others about their negative experience, stopping them from using the brand in the future. And if customers decide to vent their frustrations online, they’re more likely to implicate the whole brand rather than the individual they encountered, influencing other people’s perception of the business.
- A franchise can only succeed if it provides a consistent offering across its network; without this uniformity, it’ll appear unprofessional and inferior to its competitors. Customer service in particular has a big influence on any business’s credibility, and good employees can deliver the same high-quality service across the board to boost its reputation.
- Providing better customer service than your competitors is one of the most effective ways to nurture brand loyalty. If your employees go above and beyond when dealing with customers, they’ll create an environment in which your consumers and clients feel valued.
Important qualities for franchise employees
Your franchise employees are the face of your business, so they should reflect its core values. Every brand is different, but there are some surefire ways to make a great impression on customers.
Here are the four most important characteristics of franchise employees, regardless of the business’s brand identity:
- Friendly and approachable - Employees need to be open, considerate and empathetic in order to make customers feel appreciated at all times.
- Flexible - The ideal employee can quickly adapt their working practices and communication style according to the situation.
- Assertive - Employees should be able to confidently deal with customer conflicts and concerns without escalating the problem. Hiring strong employees gives you the chance to focus on developing your business and avoid getting sucked into day-to-day operational issues.
- Positive - Employees with a ‘can do’ attitude look for solutions instead of problems. They’re able to accept mistakes and challenges, acting quickly to find an effective way through tough moments.
Hiring best practices for franchise employees
The amount of time and care you put into your employee recruitment scheme will determine the quality of the candidates you hire. So, make an effort to develop structured interviews and apply effective recruitment techniques. The process can be time-consuming and costly, but it’s well worth the expense if it helps you hire the right employees.
Here are a few handy tips on how to hire the best employees to be the face of your business:
- You can’t teach attitude, personality and passion, so look for candidates who have the soft skills you’re after. You’re more likely to hire the right franchise employee if you think about how candidates will fit in with your culture, rather than recruiting the most talented and experienced ones.
- During interviews, ask questions centred around how candidates communicate, interact with others and deal with difficult situations - no matter the industry you work in. Remember, consumers buy from people, not brands, so your employees must know how to deliver a high-quality customer experience.
- Once you’ve hired employees, you’ll need to train them. They may be able to deliver great customer service, but they won’t be able to accurately reflect your brand and work towards your specific growth goals unless you educate them. Take the time to help staff members develop their skills and learn to convey your brand values.
- The way you treat your employees will have an impact on how they view your brand and could even affect their behaviour on a day-to-day basis. If they feel valued and have a good level of job satisfaction, they'll be much more likely to go above and beyond for your customers.
>> Read more:
Find more guidance and handy hints on franchise recruitment
Knowing how to hire the best employees is an important skill for any franchisor or franchisee, which is why we’ve written a lot on the subject.
If you’re ready to take the next step in the recruitment process, take a look at our guide to hiring and onboarding staff. Or, if you’re a franchisor, why not find out about how to interview franchisee candidates and delegate tasks once they’re on board?
Alice Tuffery, Point Franchise ©