The COVID-19 crisis has turned our day-to-day lives upside down. But as we adapt to the new normal and with the government introducing initiatives to help businesses, there are some new opportunities to be had. In this article, we outline the franchise sectors and new business opportunities to pay close attention to as lockdown measures are eased.
A global pandemic forces mankind to evolve and adjust to the new normal. Franchise sectors will recover at different rates. While some might need more time to adapt to the changes, some will experience unprecedented growth. Not sure which sectors are set to thrive? Below we have summarised the franchise sectors and business opportunities to play close attention to post-lockdown. The majority of this is based on UK government funding and how this presents great opportunities for building a new business.
Franchise sectors to play close attention to post-lockdown
‘Green’ or environmentally friendly franchise sectors
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has confirmed a £3 billion green jobs recovery package. Up to 5,000 jobs will be supported through the Green Jobs Challenge Fund, which is a £40 million scheme that encourages local authorities and environmental charities to plant trees and create green spaces. It is hoped that the green jobs package will create tens of thousands of jobs to ‘power up the nation’s workforce and protect the environment.’
This could, therefore, be a smart time to start a franchise that has a positive impact on the environment and offers services such as gardening and landscaping.
Part of the green jobs initiative is a £50 million fund to pilot innovative approaches to retrofitting social housing at scale. The idea is to make homes more efficient by using double glazing, heat pumps and insulation. This could mean that businesses that offer such services will be in high demand.
It’s also worth noting that the £2 billion Kickstart Scheme has been introduced to create hundreds of thousands new jobs for young people. This means that businesses will be given £2,000 for each new apprentice they take on under the age of 25. This is on top of the current £1,000 that Government already provides for new 16-18-year-old apprentices and under-25s with an Education, Health and Care Plan. This is something to bear in mind when contemplating starting a new business. While this isn’t just a benefit for construction franchise owners, the industry does lend itself well to the apprenticeship scheme.
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The Government has also launched a Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme to encourage the public to safely return to eating out at restaurants. They can make the most of a 50 percent reduction for sit-down meals in pubs, cafes and restaurants from Monday to Wednesday throughout August.
This is great news for struggling restaurant franchises as it means they should have a steady stream of customers in less busy times. We’re not suggesting that you launch a business in a couple of weeks to make the most of this. But, it is helpful to know that the government is taking measures to protect the restaurant industry, and it should mean that people get more used to eating in another setting that isn’t the four walls of their home.
During the pandemic, people have understandably been nervous to move, buy or sell their home. To help out, the government has introduced a temporary increase to the Nil Rate Band of Residential SDLT (Stamp Duty) from £125,000 to £500,000 until the end of March next year. This means that a large proportion of people moving up the property ladder won’t pay any Stamp Duty at all. This is to boost confidence in the housing market and ensure jobs across the property sectors are more secure.
Technology is one of the top franchise sectors to watch post-lockdown. Not many people had even heard of Houseparty or Zoom before lockdown, but they became one of the main ways that we could stay connected to friends and co-workers.
Experts suggest that software engineers are one of the most in-demand roles at the moment. This presents an exciting opportunity for the IT franchise sector and people considering entering this line of work.
The number of job opportunities in IT has rebounded very quickly. This is partly because of short term demand, but also as a result of a more general trend as technology plays a greater role in our lives. – Gerwyn Davies, senior labour market advisor at the CIPD.
The COVID-19 crisis has also resulted in companies rethinking public toilets and their technology. To improve hygiene, sensor taps, and no door handles are on the cards for the future.
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Health and social care
Healthcare companies have been hit hard as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. The NHS has been recruiting more doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals to help care for the increasing influx of patients needing treatment.
During the last four months, private healthcare providers have also been recruiting more staff for care homes. The UK has an ageing population, so the number of people needing carers is on the rise. They are particularly important in unprecedented times like the ones we are currently facing. To make sure that everyone who needs a bed in a care home can find one easily, you could start your own care franchise.
Pay close attention to these franchise sectors
These franchise sectors have high-growth potential and many of them are relatively recession-resistant. Hopefully, you now have a better idea of how you can make the most of the government funding on offer too. We have lots more content dedicated to helping business owners navigate life post-lockdown. Found this helpful? You might also be interested in why the COVID-19 crisis is the best reason to join a franchise.
Becky Martin, Point Franchise ©