For some franchisors, the pandemic led to a decrease in audits of franchised locations. With travel restricted, many brands relied more heavily on franchisees to conduct their own in-store self-assessments.
This practice led to a disconnect. FranConnect, a leading franchise management software provider, found that the gap between how franchisees and franchisors view success has never been wider. In 2019, an average audit score on FranConnect’s platform was 82 percent, compared to 88 percent when a franchisee was conducting a self-assessment. Predictably, franchisees’ self-assessments were a bit rosier, but only by about six percentage points. By 2021, the gap had doubled: the average franchisor-conducted audit score was 84 percent, while self assessments had risen to 97 percent.
FranConnect also found that just 56 percent of franchisors believe everyone within their organization “understands which operational activities have the greatest impact in detail.”
So, what do the numbers reveal? One takeaway is that franchisees thrive when they are coached. When the franchisor makes fewer visits to stores, the franchisee is less likely to understand what is expected of them, says Keith Gerson, president of franchise operations at FranConnect. Ultimately, that communication gap can lead to franchisees becoming unfocused, and complacent.
“This is something we see time and time again,” Gerson says. “When we ask our franchisors what their biggest challenge is… it usually boils down to the fact that franchisees aren’t always sure what the goal is or how to achieve it. And it’s tough to be committed to something and held accountable for it when you aren’t really sure what the goal is in the first place.”
One of the tools that quite a few brands use to establish accountability is FranConnect, a franchise management software solution that helps a franchisor strengthen a relationship with its franchisees through its growth tools and innovations. For many franchisors, FranConnect is the answer to the question: how do you motivate complacent franchisees? It does so by being the cornerstone of a communicative relationship that begins the moment a potential prospect makes a franchising inquiry. FranConnect helps a franchisor lay out easy-to-understand goals and objectives from day one, and to follow up to ensure any issues are being addressed.
“One of the biggest inhibitors to growth is not providing the correct tools for the franchisees in your system,” Gerson says. “People do not do self-destructive things intentionally. They often do them because they aren’t aware there’s an issue in the first place.”
With a recession looming, Gerson notes that execution issues will likely worsen this year. A solution like FranConnect can be the difference between having motivated franchisees looking to help grow a brand’s business, and staying focused on clear objectives.
“FranConnect, which has been around for 22 years now, is singularly purpose-built for franchising,’ Gerson says. “This is a platform that’s a single source of truth: a centralized system that’s made with franchisors and franchisees in mind.
“We are in anxious times for many,” Gerson continues. “Now more than ever you need visibility into what the most important drivers are. These systems can create accountability and help manage people to execute at higher levels at a time when you’re going to need that now more than ever.”
For more on a management system purpose-built for franchises, visit the FranConnect website.
To access the Techniques for Motivating Complacent Franchisees E-Book, you can download it here.