November 2013

5 Problems Franchises Should Avoid With BYOD


‘Bring Your Own Device’ (BYOD) can either be a blessing or a curse for your franchise operation. You get your employees to bring their favorite devices to work, in theory increasing their productivity because they are already familiar with the operation of their own personal devices. However, you can’t simply tell everyone to bring their own smartphones, tablets and laptops into work without creating a training course and BYOD policy. When developing a BYOD training program, you need to consider best personal-use policy, security practices, acceptable devices, required applications, infrastructure security and property damage liability.

Personal-Use Policy

A policy for personal device usage should be established to lay the ground rules for device usage at work and any reimbursement guidelines. Such a policy should restrict or limit access to work-related tasks. Otherwise, staff members can end up spending time on Facebook and Twitter or texting friends— all under the guise of BYOD.  But the increase in productivity, morale, and community can greatly outweigh personal time on the phone.  Plus, once you get employees on the BYOD train, they can work and communicate after hours and when they are away from the office or store.

Security Best Practices

The IT department does its best to keep all devices on the business network safe, but there’s only so much they can do with new threats popping up daily. Instead of putting the responsibility entirely on the IT department to handle issues, part of the training needs to emphasize the users’ role in best practices for keeping devices safe. Teach the end users how to install anti-virus software on their phones, how to avoid data breaches for sensitive business information and teach helpful tricks such as avoiding open wireless networks with smartphones to get around easy data minefields.  Providing training for a BYOD is usually required.  If you are a multi-unit operator, you may need to consider a quick “Go-to-Meeting” session to get everyone up-to-speed.

Compatible Devices

Some companies choose to have a specific list of compatible devices to make their lives easier. Instead of supporting 17 different Android phones and a smattering of iDevices, the business may choose to publish an approved hardware and OS list. Or, an even better, more flexible solution is to only work with web-based applications that have been engineered for mobile usage. Working with web-based apps allows the IT department to manage cross-platform mobile devices with virtually no headaches and no employee grumbling over getting new phones.  So instead of having to deal with downloading from an app store, employees can just click a link or home screen icon and jump right to the web site application.

Required Applications

Some businesses need specialized apps and software for work-related tasks, while others get by with standard software. Don’t make the employees guess at what they need to use — tell them exactly what it is and how to use it. Otherwise, you’re going to be dealing with a lot of employees who are so frustrated with figuring out how to work, that they’re going to have to resort to playing Angry Birds to get something productive done. Enterprise app stores are one way to let the employee know exactly what apps to get, although a list of recommended and required apps also helps.  You can also bring everyone together on a central operations/communications application likeManagerComplete which creates a community for employees to share ideas, check schedules, compete for sales, see inspection results, enter maintenance issues, find staff phone numbers, and more.  And the beauty with BYOD is that they can connect from anywhere, anytime such as from home, on vacation, after-hours, etc.  So you just may see a jump in productivity and morale with the right applications in play.

Damage Liability

One of the trickier parts of BYOD is who is responsible for damage to the device. Sure, it might be the employee’s device, but when it’s being used for work purposes, the waters get murky. Look into the BYOD policy to determine whether there are damage types covered by the workplace, or if the employee is wholly responsible. The same goes for who covers data recovery if your employee’s personal data gets wiped, says Forbes. You want to have policy makers consult a lawyer to figure out the employment laws surrounding this particular issue, as it gets quite complicated.

Article by Jason Duncan, CEO/Founder of ManagerComplete is an online software application that helps multi-unit franchises manage operations effectively. Follow him on Twitter for latest updates.


Tips for Being a Successful Franchisee

If you are thinking about operating as a franchisee you may be wondering what it takes to be successful.  Of course, it’s every franchisee’s dream to operate a successful franchise, and it takes a ton of committed effort to be successful.  So before opening a franchised restaurant, store or similar entity, consider following these tips for ensuring your success as a franchisee:

Choose Your Franchisor Carefully

Running a franchise takes more than just investing the money and opening the doors, you’ll have to choose an established franchisor who already has a proven track record and a solid brand reputation if you really want the operation to be an almost guaranteed success.  Choosing a franchise takes time and should not be something you jump right into.

Another point to consider: signing up with a inexperienced franchiser. It’s not that uncommon for entrepreneurs to try and capitalize on what they believe is a great idea — long before they are sure their concept works in a variety of markets and economic environments. Franchisers with only a handful of their own stores may need more time to ripen their concept.

Consider the history of the brand, the cost to invest in the franchise, the present stability of the franchise and also the market where you plan to open before making a final decision.  You may also want to talk to existing franchisees and see what their experience has been.  And, most important, what type of support systems are offered by the franchisor.

Promote, Promote, Promote

There’s no better way to grow your business than to promote it once you’ve started.  Even a successful franchise must have some type of promotion.  Don’t be afraid to market your business locally and to openly address your passion for the growth of the franchise once you open.  Promotion, either through local advertising, word of mouth, online advertising, coupons or any other means can really help to build a successful franchise.  Be sure to check with the franchisor for available marketing collateral, best practices, and more.  And stick with their marketing messaging.

Setting & Achieving Goals

Goals are vital to the success of a franchise.  Establishing a set of realistic goals will be one of the first steps as well as an ongoing step that you should take to ensure the success of a franchise.  Goals may include everything from managing cash in a more succinct manner, cutting costs, improving time management, and overcoming weaknesses to improving team productivity or reaching sales goals.  Franchise support systems can sometimes provide insights into goal setting and best practices.

Stick to the System

In the immortal words of Sport Clips CEO, Gordon Logan, “Stick to the system.”  This is great advice for franchisees… stick to the system that has been proven by the franchisor.  Keep in line with sales practices, operation processes, and marketing collateral and you will be on your way to success.  It’s usually when franchisees start to tinker with the formula that sales and productivity can start to slip because of unseen/unknown consequences.

Pick an Industry and Business You Like

Successful franchises are fun!  The single best thing you can do when you operate a franchise is to make the entire process of owning and operating the franchise a fun event.  You will have to work hard and you will be required to spend time there, so why not enjoy what you do and have fun while you do it?  Even in tough times, successful franchise owners find a way to make the work that they do rewarding and fun.  So be sure you pick the right industry and business.


Article by Jason Duncan, CEO/Founder of ManagerComplete is an online software application that helps multi-unit franchises manage operations effectively. Follow him on Twitter for latest updates.

The 3 Franchise Trends You’ll Love

The world of franchising is changing — and it’s changing for the better. We’re confident that you will love these three new franchise trends.

  1. The Rise of the Technology Franchise. In 2015, expect to see the accelerated growth of technology-related franchise opportunities. “We see an enormous opportunity in the technology space for franchise growth,” said Christopher Conner, president of Franchise Marketing Systems. “This growth has been in both retail models and in work-from-home-type franchise businesses. Because of the overwhelming increase in demand for technology and reliance on IT in both our personal and business lives, we see this trend continuing to expand for the foreseeable future.” So, what exactly are technology-related franchise opportunities? Mobile technology repair franchises (such as cellphone repair or computer repair services), as well as SEO and Internet marketing franchise models are among the most prominent and fastest-growing opportunities.
  2. More Global Opportunities. KFC announced plans for 1,400 new units in Africa by the end of this year, Jamba Juice will be opening 200 new locations in Korea next year, and Dairy Queen plans to double its locations in China by the end of 2015. Franchising is truly going global. “Franchising is a tremendous export,” explained Hashim Aziz Hashim, president and CEO of NRD Holdings, Inc., an organization heavily involved in franchise equity funding. “In emerging countries [where there is] urbanization, there’s more desire for higher-quality products, especially U.S. brands.” That translates into increased opportunities for franchises to move overseas. Today, roughly 80 percent of the world’s population lives in emerging markets, which means that overseas expansion presents a lucrative financial incentive for many franchises, allowing them to tap into new markets and attract new consumers. Franchising opportunities are especially hot across Asia and Latin America.
  3. Multigenerational Partnerships. Increasingly, parents and children are pooling resources and talent to embark into the world of franchising together. “The baby boomer generation [wants] a ‘second act’ career that offers independence as well as benefits and structure, which is often found in franchising. Millennials are a generation driven by risk and innovation. With limited job opportunities and natural independent drive, the entrepreneurship and stability of franchising is an appealing career path for millennials. Teaming together to invest in a franchise is a natural partnership for both,” explained Terry Powell, founder and CEO of franchise business coaching company The Entrepreneurs Source. “Parents have the funds and are looking for a better investment, [and] their children are looking to start their professional career.” The bottom line? In 2015 and beyond, the franchising model is set to become increasingly multigenerational.

So what’s the takeaway here? The franchise market is constantly evolving to global conditions — that’s part of what makes the model so tremendously successful.  “Franchising is a powerful business model and an amazing vehicle for growth,” Connor explained. “If done right, franchising can supercharge an economy by fueling entrepreneurial growth in jobs, output, and productivity. Franchisees win with a defined system, economies of scale, branding, and a business system that should offer mentorship, support, and guidance to a successful business platform.”


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Article by Jason Duncan, CEO/Founder of ManagerComplete is an online software application that helps multi-unit franchises manage operations effectively. Follow him on Twitter for latest updates.