Choosing the right candidate to operate your new franchise can be difficult and time consuming, but taking the time to do it right can offer a number of benefits. This could include reduced turnover and disputes as well as improved brand image and better allocation of resources.
To assist you with your selection process, here are four steps to help ensure the best decision regarding new franchisees is made at the outset.
1. Define the Right Candidate
Before you start interviewing prospective franchisees, it is important for you to consider what your brand’s perfect candidate looks like. Similar to a job description, you will want to detail the franchisee’s role and the skills they need to fulfill the responsibilities of being a franchise operator.
For most brands, this will include a candidate with experience, capital and a passion for your industry.
You will also want to consider whether you are looking at a multi-unit or single unit franchisee as this will affect your final decision.
Once this profile has been developed, it will act as a set of criteria helping you to establish your application process and ensuring that your candidate is qualified.
2. Review Applications
Now that you have your criteria, it is time to commence selecting potential franchisees. The best place to start is with their resume. Resumes are a great way to quickly separate potential candidates from those that are not worthy of additional screening resources.
When looking at the resume, try to find experience and information that matches the profile you created in the previous step. If possible, try to locate the candidate on social media. With so many accounts being public, this is important to find out how the prospective operator presents himself/herself to the world and how this image will reflect on your brand.
3. Conduct Thorough Interviews
Once you have reviewed resumes and selected the most promising candidates, it is time for the interviews.
It is always helpful to start with a quick phone interview. When you call to let them know you are interested in meeting, ask them a couple of easy questions. This is a valuable way to find out how the applicant responds in the moment, as well as to find out more about the individual.
The next step should be in-person interviews. It’s always a good idea to plan for multiple interviews, each with different goals.
The first interview should focus on verifying information and obtaining more details about their background. Keep your questions open ended and focus on carrying on a conversation, as opposed to taking an opportunity to test the candidate. This will allow you to better understand the applicant’s personality and how they carry themselves in everyday situations by helping to remove interview anxieties.
It is during the follow up interviews that you can become more specific, focusing on practical application, as well as a more in-depth review of the candidate’s financial stability.
4. Look Deeper into the Candidate
Once you are finished interviewing candidates and have narrowed down your options, it is time to investigate the candidate more thoroughly.
While your candidate may appear to be ideal after a combination of structured interviews and relevant behavioural profiles, there could be information that has not been revealed.
It is important to go beyond the standard due diligence processes to confirm your applicant’s financial stability, background, and history of delinquent or criminal records. Doing so further eliminates risk and better enables your company and franchisees to succeed.
Through the course of investigation, many types of pertinent information can be discovered. Some examples of derogatory information include: criminal record history, poor credit history, failed business ventures, discrepancies in information reported on franchise application, bankruptcy history, legal action and judgment records.
By following these four steps, you can help ensure that your candidates will be successful allowing your company to grow and prosper.
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