Continuing the series on fees versus the value received when buying a franchise, let’s look at operations. A franchise is a series of systems and processes that taken together form the basis of the business.
When it comes to operations support and buying a franchise, you will pay for these systems and the training to use them. But if you are with a great franchisor, it will be worth every penny. Here are areas to consider and questions to ask in regards to operations support and buying a franchise.
Key Questions to Ask about Operations Support and Buying a Franchise:
- Business Processes – What processes are in place to run the actual business? Are there checklists for each phase of operations? How am I trained in these processes? What technology exists to automate these processes? Are all daily business operations accounted for via processes or are there areas where I am on my own?
- Staff– Are there guides for hiring and training staff? Are there profiles of the ideal traits of each job function? What support do I receive in training and managing staff? Are there detailed job descriptions? Are there key performance indicators and processes to manage to those indicators? What guidance do I receive on when and how to staff? Does the staffing model support the business model?
- Business Coaching – Do I have a dedicated Business Coach assigned to me? What is her function? What is her background? How does he support me? Is the support coach focused on helping me grow my business AND increasing my profitability (This is important to uncover. Remember that the franchisor receives royalties based on revenue, but profitability is your lifeline. Make sure they are incented to drive both)?
- Online Resources – Are there easy to access guides, checklists, and other resources online to help me run my business? What areas are covered? How often are these resources updated?
- Help Desk Support – We’re not just talking IT support here. Is there a help line or live chat available to me get quick answers to business operations questions?
If you want to get your franchise to the point where you can be hands off in its daily operation, then you are going to need strong systems and processes in place. A great franchise system not only has great systems and processes, it also is constantly evolving to meet a changing world. If you’re seriously thinking about buying a franchise, make sure you know what type of support you’re buying along with the brand name.