The Franchise Association of New Zealand Prospective Franchisee Online Training Programme is a specialist programme intended to educate would-be franchise purchasers. The programme was launched at the FANZ conference in Auckland in July 2013 and has now educated more than 1000 people.
The following article presents five facts you should know about the programme.
Fact One: The programme covers a lot of information prospective franchisees should know
The training program is wide ranging covering more than 30 topics under the following five module headings:
- Module 1: Franchising Basics
- Module 2: The Money Side
- Module 3: The System & Start-up
- Module 4: Operating & Support
- Module 5: Due Diligence
At the conclusion of each module trainees are presented with a series of self-assessment questions. The questions are designed to ensure they understand some of the key points covered. Once completed, they can move on to the next module in the programme. At the completion of all five modules they are then awarded a Certificate from Massey University and the Franchise Association of New Zealand to indicate that have successfully completed the Franchisee Pre-Entry Online Training programme.Each module incorporates a mixture of text you can read (including downloadable content) and short videos – and takes around 45 minutes to complete.
Fact Two: The programme should be of interest to your staff
The training program should be of interest to franchisors and franchisor staff, as well as the prospective franchisees contacting you. The programme contains a lot of information that may be useful for your team to know, including how your concept fits relative to the spectrum of other franchising configurations. Consideration of any similarities and differences with your own system can be valuable when the inevitable prospective or existing franchisee question arises: “how come you/we are different to other franchises in this area?”
Fact Three: You will benefit from seeing what your prospective franchisees are seeing
You should complete the programme so that you are aware of what your prospective franchisees are seeing. Knowledge of the existing programme may result in changes to how you proceed or handle your enquiries throughout the franchise sales process. In the modules there are different questions and checklists that we suggest franchisees ask. So it\’s helpful to have a heads-up, particularly if there’s something you don’t do or do differently. Going through the program will help you to identify likely questions and better handle your answers in a way that will save you time.
It is also quite possible that after completing the programme, there may be changes that you want to make to some processes or infrastructure in your franchise system. The program stresses many areas of value to franchisees and makes suggestions for how franchisees can evaluate things. This covers many areas like induction and initial training, franchise manuals, local area marketing tools, local area marketing plans, KPIs and benchmarking, franchisee business planning, and field visits. Based on our experience, helping many established franchising companies improve their systems, we believe it is highly likely many franchisors will benefit by taking the time to consider what is in this programme.
Fact Four: You should consider making the programme part of your franchisee selection process
Some franchisors have already made the programme part of their selection process. As a ‘best practice’ suggestion, you should also consider making the pre-entry online training programme part of your franchisee selection process. This may be regarded as a good practice for a number of reasons. For one, it helps to ensure the prospective franchisees that contact you have given some consideration to their own situation, their fit with franchising, and factors that may influence their decision. This process helps to align expectations and research tells us that franchisees that do more background research are likely to experience higher levels of satisfaction post purchase. This is important as franchisee satisfaction is associated with outcomes that matter to you as a franchisor, like franchisee tenure, franchisee validation, multi-unit aspirations, and more. As a franchisor including the programme in your recruitment process you would be demonstrating that you want to work with people that are committed to making good decisions and show some perseverance. The prospective franchisee that puts four or five hours aside to improve their knowledge about franchising and what\’s involved in buying a franchise is one that is clearly taking a positive step towards their own future and development.
Fact Five: Franchize Consultants is proud to have provided resources in support of the programme
Franchize Consultants is very proud to have been the principal author and editor of the training programme. Development of the training program involved a considerable investment of our time, but the output strongly aligns with one of our key imperatives – which is to contribute to the betterment of franchising. We strongly supported this programme because we believed it will help prospective franchisees better understand franchising and what is involved in running a franchised business. As a by-product this is likely to help subsequent decisions and satisfaction. And given the overall development and growth of franchising is largely predicated on the experience and success of existing franchisees [and their willingness to validate and recommend], we believe that this programme can only be a good thing for franchising overall.