How We Implemented Cloud Based Franchise Software With Leading Norwegian Franchise Chain

Renholdssoner logoJust recently we had the pleasure of entering an agreement with Renholdssoner, a leading Norwegian franchise in the cleaning industry. The company decided it was time to implement our franchise software platform. A media announcement hit the wire just today.

“We wanted to partner with some that would bring not only expertise in technical environments and system integration, but also a deep understanding of the franchise industry. When I learnt about Chainformation and how their franchise software solution could improve communication and bring knowledge right to the franchisee, it just clicked,” says Dag Hognerud, CEO of Renholdssoner.

Read the franchise case study how we implemented franchise software

Read the franchise case study how we implemented franchise software

You can read more about the implementation of our cloud based franchise software in this case study.

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What Prospective Franchisees Look for in Potential Franchise Opportunities

Franchise_Training

Investing in a franchise is a big step, and with so many franchise packages to choose from, prospects want to make sure they’re making the right decision.

I came across a recent study of what franchisees considered the most important when evaluating a franchise opportunity. Here are the results in ranked order:

  1. Potential earnings (7.2)
  2. Franchisee training and support (6.7)
  3. Initial investment amount (6.2)
  4. Operating territory (5.6)
  5. Brand name/recognition (5.4)
  6. Marketing Assistance (5.3)
  7. Industry the franchise is part of (5.1)
  8. Franchise term length (4.7)
  9. Size of the franchise (4.5)
  10. Company Age (4.4)

Take a look again. It’s not your size, how long you have been around, or the terms you offer, that are the deal breakers – It’s the franchise training and support you offer. Surprised? Franchisees are looking for your help in order to be successful.

With a score of 6.7 out of 10, “Franchise Training and support” ranked second only to “potential earnings” as the most important item considered by a franchisee when evaluating a franchise. So the question is – how good is the support you’re providing to attract and convert franchisees?

Ask yourself three simple questions:

  • How collaborative are you?

    How collaborative are you?

    Is my franchise manual easy to read and understand regardless of location?

  • Do our tools and programs make it easy for franchisees to successfully handle local marketing and customer facing programs (…compliant with our rules and polices?)
  • Is our workforce environment collaborative and is information available instantly?

If your answer is no to at least one of these questions, you should consider how to make better use of your franchise intranet.

It’s no secret that a franchisee will investigate multiple franchises before making their franchise investment decision. Actually, it’s being said that 50% of franchisees evaluate 10 or more franchises before jumping the gun. And being asked to spend anywhere from $10,000 to upwards of $5 million to get off the ground, wouldn’t you do the same?

Presentation: Take a first step by taking charge of your franchise intranet.

Presentation: Take a first step by taking charge of your franchise intranet.

Here is a great overview of what franchise software can do for your business – from collaborative communications, to better operations manuals.

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The importance of a common view across your franchise

A franchise that doesn’t manage its brand will ultimately go out of business. But to manage your brand is more than creating powerful visual image. You also need to rely on your franchisees share your view.

brand-buildingLet me clarify: nobody is better equipped to bring your brand to life, than your franchisees. Your job is to provide the right working environment for your brand to flourish. Unfortunately, many start-ups and fast growing franchise chains make the mistake of believing that “the brand will take care of itself”.

“As long as we have a good identity manual, we can focus on other things in the daily operations.” said one franchisor I spoke to recently.

Newsflash: your brand is more than an identity manual.

customerserviceYour brand is an experience – The moment a customer walks through your doors, they establish a relationship with your brand. And I’m not just talking about the look of your signage or the design of your menus. Your customers will also be influenced by how they wre greeted at the door (Did they smile? Were they polite?), how fast their orders were taken, how the food looks (does it compare to the images on your menu?), and how quickly your staff responded to a mistake. (Did your staff know where to look for support?)

Your brand requires buy-in – It doesn’t matter how much you believe your brand is X, Y, Z if you cannot properly convey this to your franchisees in a way that they can grasp. Your franchisees will only be able to bring your brand to life if you can articulate it. Do you have the tools in place to convey your brand story across the franchise? If your answer is “Yes, we have a PDF” – think again. Don’t tell me you are relying on the your brand’s future through a PDF!

Consistency is everythingYour brand is more than a visual backdrop – While you may have paid a lot of attention to designing great visuals, graphics, signs, and menus, your brand is much more than a visual identity. How do your staff greet customers at the door, how do you respond when a customer has a problem, and how identical is the customer experience from location to location?

So how do you create a common view across your franchise? Getting the right tools in place is a good start. A franchise intranet, powered by franchise software such as CCM will help getting the basics right:

  • Communication: Improve the communication between the franchisor and the franchisee and among different franchisees
  • Who’s reading what: Provide an overview which franchisees are actually reading the messages you broadcast, and sending out reminders to those that are not taking part
  • Compliance: Enable compliance tracking of franchisees to ensure that the brand is lived up to in the daily operations.
  • Common look and feel: Provide marketing design tools for building e-mail marketing campaigns, localized print advertisements, promotions etc.
  • Common customer experience: Help the franchisees order supplies from the right supplier so that the product or service is the same in every location.

Creating a common view across your franchise starts at the top of your operation. If you provide the tools and the right communication platform, your franchisees will more easily bring your brand to life.

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3 simple steps to move franchise consistency in the right direction

Customer ExperienceConsistency is the ultimate proof that your franchise is accomplishing what it’s set out to be. The bottom line is, that if your franchise is not able to provide the same customer experience, product and service across all of your locations, you are failing to live up to customer expectations.

And once you have battled the price war, optimized your supply chain, and tweaked your business model to perfection, it is down to one thing: customer experience. Michael Dell said it best: “Customer experience is the next competitive battle ground”.

Regardless if you run a retail operation with three outlets in the same town, or 20 restaurants across state-lines, getting it right, every time, in every location is key.

Here are three simple things to get consistency moving in the right direction:

  • Make sure your operations manual is up to snuff – what I mean by that is to take a completely digital approach. Don’t resort to PDF of your old binder manual – consider a flexible approach that lets your staff search, easily digest and execute on the information provided. WorkMap is a great method to your operations manuals in order, and the method was developed specifically for people in franchise and retail.
  • Train your staff on branding and identity – A staff member who understands your value proposition, your brand strategy, and your visual identity, is also able to convey what you want them to convey, to your end-customers. Of course it helps to put an identity library on your Intranet, packed with everything from details on how to design a sign for the store, to designing a coupon mailer.
  • Provide access to vendor agreements and discounts – If the food on your menu does not taste the same from one location to the other, it may be that that ingredients are being sourced from different vendors. Make sure your locations are tapped into your master purchase agreements, discounts and preferred vendors. And why not reward them for using them?

Naturally, this is just the tip of the ice berg. We think they key to consistency across the franchise begins with a powerful franchise intranet (fueled by franchise software) and a digital operations manual. If you start at the root of your problems, the rest will follow….

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Equipping your franchise for growth with franchise software

3 methodsThe global franchise industry, including retail, is growing significantly faster than the general economy. If your franchise is growing, it means that new problems must be tackled:

  • How do you keep recipes intact for 2, 50 or 300 locations?
  • How do you expand abroad without losing brand control?
  • How do you inform staff about important news and upates?

This is where the franchise intranet comes into play. The secret? Fuel it with a powerful franchise software. Connecting your chain and its staff into one collaborative platform, this is how you can truly overcome your growing pains and become a powerful franchise

Here’s our promise: CCM will simplify daily operations for any multi-unit business. On the surface, your stores get an Intranet on steroids. Under the surface, your business gets a one-stop system that delivers know-how, enables dialogue and speed of communication between your head office and all stores, outlets and locations – Customized to your exact specifications and ready out of the box!

What it doesRight now, we’re offering a simple trial with a money back guarantee. If you are struggling with compliance in your franchise, what have you got to lose? Try CCM today!

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Summer is the time to plan your franchise intranet

Franchise planningWhile many Europeans (and some Americans) are heading out for well-deserved summer holidays, business owners are using the summer period to prepare for the fall and build a better performing business model.

This is a great time to take a look at your franchise intranet. Equipped with franchise software, you can turn your static intranet to a high performing franchise intranet that empowers your locations and staff to do greater things such as:

  • Run day-to-day operations for managing quotes, jobs and invoices
  • Easy access Online Operations Manuals
  • Increase learning through training and support materials
  • Collaborate seamlessly with other franchisees

“Building a new intranet will more likely take six months. This includes spending time at the outset of the project understanding staff and business needs.”

Using franchise software such as CCM by Chainformation may be the way to go. It will help you launch quicker, with franchise specific apps and tools already in place such as:

  • Brand and Identity Guidelines
  • Marketing Design Templates and Execution tools
  • Daily Sales Reporting via cell phone
  • E-learning tools
  • Recipe handling (for restaurants)
  • Preferred vendor & Contract information

Try Franchise Software for 8 WeeksCCM is ready to be used out of the box and can be implemented in just 2-4 weeks. Right now we’re offering an 8-week trial of CCM for just 500 Euro. There is a money back guarantee so you have NOTHING to risk at all.

What are you waiting for? This is your opportunity to turn your franchise intranet from good to great.

Here are some examples of clients using our powerful franchise software/franchise intranet solution, including O’Learys, Wayne’s Coffee, Brun og Blid, iduna, and Colorama.

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Customer Experience: Why do so few get it right?

Customer Experience: Why do so few get it right?

30 minutes waitAccording to a CEI Survey, 86% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience.  But only 1% of customers feel that vendors consistently meet their expectations. If customer experience is the next competitive battleground, why do so few get it right?

Whether it’s poorly trained staff or a lack of internal processes, the root to the problem can often be fixed with a powerful franchise manual/operations manual. As an owner, you need to provide your staff with a manual that helps your staff deliver customer satisfaction through:

  • Consistent Service – Customer to be treated the same way in every location, enjoying the same service, the same product, within the same time.
  • Brand Compliance – A common look and feel will not only strengthen your brand and image, but will also make your customer feel more at home.
  • Customer Touch points – Are your staff trained to say the same things, respond a certain way, or given clear guidelines what to do, when, to satisfy your customer?

We live in a time when the customer is king. Equipped with smart phones and social media, they can sink a business, influence a crowd, or create a demand for a product with just a few taps.

With our WorkMap methodology, we build operations manuals that are easier to read and follow.

Using WorkMap methodology, your franchise can have an operations manuals that is easier to use

If you are preparing to open more locations for your franchise, or are simply looking to improve your customer experience across the chain, start with your operations manual. Get that right, and the rest will follow…

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