More businesses are considering the opportunities and benefits offered by franchising when planning the future development and growth of their business.

The British Franchise Association report there are several steps which potential franchisors should take:

  • Research the market: to ensure that products and services are competitive and distinctive enough to be franchised and that customer demand is widespread.
  • Produce a business plan: outlining proposals in full and including a detailed SWOT analysis.
  • Protect all intellectual property rights: by registering trademarks, trade names and patents with relevant offices.
  • Test the franchise: in the form of a pilot operation lasting at least 12 months, ideally longer if the business is seasonal.
  • Instruct a solicitor: familiar with franchising operations to draw up a comprehensive franchise contract setting out the obligations of each party.
  • Produce a prospectus: to attract suitable franchisees and to determine the criteria for franchisee selection.
  • Produce a comprehensive operations manual: and training schedule for franchisees.
  • Establish a central management function: and set up a system to monitor performance of franchisees.
  • Develop a marketing and sales plan: to promote the franchise network.
  • Seek expert advice: to assist you with the above

Only when armed with all the relevant information should a business make the decision to franchise.

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