For many businesses the back-to-school recruitment push is huge every year.
For many businesses the back-to-school recruitment push is huge every year. Even if we’re not talking about recruiting franchisees, it’s a busy time for staff recruitment. For obvious reasons, 2020 has been a little odd; people have been forced to work from home, others have been home-schooling and, in some cases, people have lost jobs. That means September’s recruitment drive could, quite possibly, be the biggest one we’ve ever seen. But why is it such a key time, even in normal times?
Quite simply, it comes down to the pain of self-reflection over the summer period. It’s the pain or pressure on someone’s current circumstances which drives them to make a change and summer holidays - whether spent at home or away - is a common time when people make a decision to change. Back-to-school provides a catalyst for acting on change - it gives people a deadline. Now, with our discomfort being multiplied by ten, franchisors have the opportunity to directly address those pains and indicate how and why your business can offer a solution. Let’s break it down into the specific individuals you should be targeting and explain why this year is so crucial.
First up, there’s those people who have been working from home. Maybe they’ve realised that if they can work from home, then they could be their own boss from home too. It’s certainly an option for many franchisees and franchisors have got to think about how to target that type of person. How does your brand give franchisees the flexibility, security and scalability to build a profitable and fulfilling business without stepping foot out of the front door?
Next, we have those who have been juggling home-schooling their children with work. Many franchises offer great flexibility which is something that these parents are likely to be craving. If your franchise gives people the freedom to choose their own working hours, that will seem very attractive to this group. For Tutor Doctor, this group might find us appealing because they’ll have identified the need for good quality tutors for them and their friends. They won’t want to tutor themselves, but they may be keen to manage a team of outstanding tutors to fill the gap in the market in their local community.
Now think about those who have, unfortunately, lost their jobs – you can enlighten them on how to take control of their career and income by becoming their own boss. Your messaging will need to be handled sensitively and showcase the support available to franchisees, not just when they launch their franchise but ongoing. These people may be very risk averse after experiencing a shock redundancy or abrupt contract end – you need to address how your franchise is a solution to those risks.
With unemployment rising, we also have an opportunity to take advantage of the huge melting pot of talent that simply wouldn’t have been available on the market this time last year. Whilst not everyone wants to become their own boss, that doesn’t mean that either we or our franchisees couldn’t use this talent in our businesses.
Above everything else, as back-to-school ads kick air on TV and radio, prospective franchisees will be looking for a franchise that can withstand economic downturns or global crises. It’s a franchisor’s opportunity then to showcase how existing franchisees have dealt with the challenges of the last few months with your support. Tutor Doctor could not deliver their in-home tutoring during lockdown but could adapt delivery to online. Our ability to adapt quickly was great for our students and parents, keeping tutors and franchisees busy. It’s easy for us to demonstrate how education will always be in demand but there are plenty of other franchises operating in sectors that also offer recession-proof businesses.
September will come around sooner than you expect, so have you planned how you’ll make the most of the renewed recruitment rush?