Selecting a franchise to work for is a tough decision, but doing your homework and looking into what the franchise has to offer will help to separate the good ones from the bad.
Preparation in order to help you make an informed decision is key, so a checklist of questions should be drawn up so that you are confident the franchiser will be reliable and help you to operate a successful business.
There are a number of areas to examine when considering a franchising opportunity. The financial security of a franchise is an important consideration, along with how well it has done so far, its reputation, why the company went into franchising, whether a comprehensive training scheme together with supporting manual will be provided, as well as whether it can help you to obtain funding to start up.
Potential franchisees are also recommended to speak to the company's existing franchisees to find out what their experiences have been. Good franchisers should allow free access to its network of franchisees.
Doing this will enable you to find out how people who work for the franchise are treated, whether they get enough support and if their opinions are valued.However, what existing franchisees tell you about their experiences should be regarded in the right context – bear in mind that if things are not working out well for some franchisees it could be – at least in part - their fault, so it does not necessarily meant that you will have a similar experience. Another factor to watch out for is whether a franchise has joined up to a national franchising association or the UK-based British Franchise Association (BFA) or the Irish-based Irish Franchise Association (IFA). These associations are self-regulated and franchises are accredited based on a range of criteria.
- For example, the British Franchise Association (BFA) says that its members have shown and will show important characteristics, evaluated on a set of criteria based on the European Code of Franchising Ethics, in order for them to receive bfa accreditation.
- As such, bfa-accredited franchises are "viable and franchisable", an aspect that has to be proven through success experienced by the vast majority of franchisees over an extended period.
- The operations of accredited franchises will be conducted in an ethical way and within the framework of a comprehensive franchise agreement.
- Disclosure of financial and directors' records, financial projections and the identity of existing franchisees is also an important condition franchises need to adhere to in order to qualify for accreditation.
- Once accredited, franchises will need to maintain their standards, as the bfa re-accredits franchises on a regular basis.
- The final thing to consider before signing on the dotted line for your franchise is the small print of your franchise contract. Ensure that your agreement is a balanced document that protects both your rights and those of the franchiser. When in doubt, consult a legal adviser first.
In the end, the franchise collaboration should benefit both parties, so clear communication is important from the start.
Now you know the characteristics that make up a "successful franchisee", why not click on any of the links in the left hand naviagtion bar and find a franchise opportunity that matches your requirements. All information is free, so get moving!!