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Are you planning to make a change in 2022? Add franchising to your options

Written by Cathryn Hayes on Wednesday, 02 February 2022. Posted in Insight

Recruitment firm Randstad UK recently surveyed 6,000 workers and found that nearly a quarter were planning a change of role within three to six months.

Are you planning to make a change in 2022? Add franchising to your options

Recruitment firm Randstad UK recently surveyed 6,000 workers and found that nearly a quarter were planning a change of role within three to six months. Their report claims that this is part of a “great resignation” prompted by a high number of job vacancies, plus burnout caused by the stress of the pandemic.

Will a change of employer be enough to bring the changes people are looking for? Only time will tell but for some, the freedom of starting their own business instead of another stint of corporate life may be their choice.

In fact, the UK has seen an increase in the number of people starting businesses over the last 12 months and franchising would be a better option for many of these would-be entrepreneurs. 

So, could franchising be the right choice if you are looking to change course?

Before you can answer that question, you should take some time to consider your ambitions and priorities and think about what you want to do.

You will have support and training to help you prosper as a franchisee but will still need to work hard to make the business a success, so it should be something you will enjoy doing.  You don’t have to pick a business in a sector you know, you can consider a complete change of career, with training and support provided by the franchisor. 

What is most important to you at this stage of your life? Are you ambitious to grow a substantial business as an asset for the future, with good potential for income growth? Or possibly you are looking to take a step back from the hectic corporate career ladder and improve your work/life balance? 

Is there a sector that you’ve always been interested in but don’t have the knowledge and experience to start a business? This is where franchising comes into its own as the support and training you receive as a franchisee can help you to change your focus completely. Be very honest with yourself as you work through this stage exploring your options and priorities. Although franchising reduces the risks and provides support, you will still need to work hard to make your franchise a success and not everyone is cut out to be in business for themselves.

There are many factors for you to consider, but one of the main ones must be ‘what am I going to enjoy doing every day?’

Find out more

Take a look at franchising in depth to ensure that you have a good understanding of the range of opportunities available, across lots of different industry sectors. You may be more interested in home based ‘owner operator’ franchises which are available in such varied sectors as children’s activities, mobile sales and delivery services, pet care, car repairs, domestic cleaning. Or maybe you are looking for office or premises-based franchises, with opportunities in fast food, retail, sign-making, mobile phone or coffee shops. With management franchises you will need to employ staff, or you may decide to be a ‘hands on’ operator and work alone. 

Look at the British Franchise Association website (www.thebfa.org) which provides a directory of their members and other useful resources. Franchise exhibitions are another good opportunity to see the range of companies exhibiting, as well as attending free educational seminars on franchising while you are there. 

Start making choices

Once you have a better idea of what is available, you can narrow things down, based on your preferences and priorities, with an industry sector in mind which you will enjoy being part of. As mentioned earlier, this doesn’t have to be a sector you already know, as training is provided. Many people take the opportunity of moving into a new sector or type of business which they find interesting, rather than stick to their previous line of work.

You’ll need to think about how much you have to invest and how much you need to take out of the business every month to cover your personal financial needs. Money isn’t the only motivator for many people, but it is vital to ensure that your expectations are realistic and can be met.  

Once you have decided on the sector and type of business (whether home based, owner-operator or management) you are interested in, you can see what franchises operate in the sector and start to find out more about those brands. You may want to visit a few to compare what they say about their support and training and how they will help you to succeed. And remember, the franchisor will also be assessing your suitability as having the right ‘fit’ for their network, this will be a two-way process. 

Check it is the right one

It is important to undertake thorough research before you commit to buying a franchise. In my next column, I will cover this research stage in more detail and provide some key points to ensure you are fully prepared for your new life as a franchisee.

About the Author

Cathryn Hayes

Cathryn is franchise director at Revive! Auto Innovations and has over 20 years of franchising experience. She was previously head of franchising at HSBC, as well as head of business support at the British Franchise Association. She has a high profile within the franchise industry, contributing regular articles to the franchise press and other business media. For many years she was a judge for the BFA/HSBC Franchise Awards.

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