Have you ever dreamed of getting away from your current career, and starting afresh? It’s a dream that many of us hold, and franchising gives you the perfect opportunity to realise it. The concept of franchising has been around for decades now, and it’s easy to see why it’s still so popular today. Rather than sticking your neck out and risking all by starting your own business, you are instead able to tap into the success of an already popular brand. Even though you have to pay a monthly fee to the parent company, the benefits you receive in return are enormous- they take a lot of the stress out of business management. Franchises are a big hit with consumers, too, since people are hard-wired to choose something familiar over something new. It’s thanks to the franchising model that fast food chains like McDonalds have been able to conquer the world- wherever you go, when you see those golden arches, you know just what’s on the menu.
Operating a franchise is a chance for you to start a whole new life, and really make something of yourself. Instead of spending day in, day out working for your boss, you’ll be the one in charge. Yet starting a franchise from scratch can be an extremely time-consuming process. On the other hand, buying out an existing franchise means you have a lot less to worry about. Instead of having to spend months working overtime to get the business off the ground, you’ll know that the hard work has already been taken care of. Existing franchises already have a core base of customers giving them a steady stream of income, and will have built up a reputation in the area.
If you’re thinking about entering the world of franchising, though, then it’s vital that you come prepared. Just like when you go on holiday, you should make a checklist to ensure that everything is sorted before you finalize the deal. Firstly, you’ll want to take a look at the franchisee’s books, to see that everything is in order. After all, if you buy out a franchise just to find that its finances are in a real mess, then you might as well have started from scratch. If things are looking good, though, you’ll have a real opportunity to hit the ground running.
Next up, you should think about the staffing situation. Will the existing employees stay on to work under you, or will you have to take on a whole new team? The former option is the easiest for buyers, since you don’t have to worry about recruitment and training while you are still getting to grips with the business yourself. Having a team of employees who already know how things work takes a lot off the heat off you, so it can be helpful to those who are just getting started in franchising. On the other hand, you might want to put your own stamp on the franchise, in which case hiring a fresh set of employees might be the better option.
Last but not least, you’ll want to learn as much as you can about the particular franchisee’s relationship with the franchisor. For instance, how much freedom do you have to set your own prices? Does the franchisor provide ready-made promotions and marketing materials, or will you be responsible for this yourself? Not only does learning about the franchising arrangement teach you more about how the business works before you get stuck in, but it will also give you an indication of how much work you’ll be expected to put in yourself. Use this step to determine whether you want to have a lot of control over business processes, or whether you’d rather go with the flow and focus on the more immediate task of running the business on a daily basis.
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