What you need to know and do before your new franchise begins trading.

running your first franchise

Running a Franchise – Your Test as a Leader, Manager and Achiever

Buying a franchise can be one of the most important decisions of your life. Apart from the obvious financial implications, a new franchise business can impact every aspect of your life – from what your day looks like to the sleep you get at night!
Therefore, it’s quite important to cover all bases while deciding that franchising is indeed the right choice for you . You will, then, need to know that you are choosing the correct franchise and you are fully aware of the positives and negatives this venture comes with.
But what happens once you have bought a franchise? How do you start trading? What do you need to know about the daily operations, finances, personnel management and time management?

The Training Period

Every responsible franchisor offers thorough training to their franchisees. The training period can vary from one business to another, dependent largely on the scale and scope of operations. You, as a franchisee, should look to make the most of various training sessions that the franchisor will conduct. This period also holds the key to forming a positive, profitable relationship with the franchisor.
Franchisee training aims to help you

  • Understand the business and the business strategy
  • Get an overview of the short-term and long-term goals
  • Discuss your vision and business plan with the franchisor
  • Discuss your vision and business plan with the franchisor
  • Understand how the logistics, finances and human resources management will work
  • Know the level of ongoing support you will receive

An important document you will receive before or during the process is the ‘Franchise Manual’. A typical Franchise Manual outlines everything you need to know about the business, the operations and your responsibilities as a franchisee.

A Template for Franchise Manuals
  • Getting Started
    An introduction to the franchising model adopted by the franchisor
  • Introduction to the Franchisor Business
    The history and track record of the franchisor business, along with an insight into the business strategy
  • Training Details
    How the training period will shape up and what you can expect to learn
  • Personnel Management Advice
    How the recruitment, management and termination of employee contracts will work
  • Operational Advice
    How to handle the day-to-day operations
  • Sales Management and Reporting
    How to record, store and report sales through various payment channels
  • Administration Advice
    How to manage the on-site administration on various levels
  • Accounts Advice
    Bookkeeping advice for the on-site accounting personnel
  • Finance Advice
    Reporting external finances, loans and credits
  • Quality Control
    Adhering to the franchisor’s standards of quality control in storage, shipping and on-site activities
  • Complaint Redress
    Acknowledging, assessing and redressing customer complaints at on-site level
  • Dispute resolution
    Addressing and resolving disputes unrelated to products and services
  • Schedule of Fees
    A detailed reference of recurring and ongoing fees to be paid to the franchisor
  • Insurance, Indemnity and Liability Advice
    How to handle all insurance related activities; How the indemnity and liability sharing will work.
  • Health and Safety Advice
    How to maintain compliance with requisite health and safety norms, rules, laws and standards; How employee training in this regard will work.
  • Ethics
    Values and ethics to run the franchise location by.

Questions You Should Ask

Before your franchise becomes operational, it’s important to know how and what can go wrong. The best way of achieving is this asking pertinent questions if they haven’t already been answered during the training period. Some of the questions are:

  • How should the inventory be managed?
  • What are the points of failure for logistics?
  • What level of support can you expect regarding personnel management?
  • How should your franchise obtain all the necessary go-ahead certificates from local authorities?
  • How much freedom will you, as a franchisee, have regarding operational activities, marketing and promotions?
  • How should you manage the downtime resulting from various reasons?

Summary

Tying up all the loose ends and understanding the franchisor business fully well are two factors that can help you stay on top of all the angles involved in running your franchise. This further leads to fewer problems down the road, while also letting you enjoy the process of ‘being your own boss’.