|Small Business Information|
Franchise Company Operations Manual Sample Outline
Many companies wish to expand and a few wish to use franchising as a method of expansion. Not a bad idea, but one must consider the importance of the fine details. One book I recommend you read is the "E-Myth" by Gerber it is available at all the usual places. You see when going from a small business to a franchise company it is important to make sure you take out all the mistakes you have made in the past in building your small business and insure that your future franchisees never make those mistakes themselves. After all they need not go thru the rigorous minefields and brick walls you had to in order to be successful. Especially considering you will most likely be charging them a substantial upfront franchise fee.
Many new franchisors know they need an Official and Confidential Operations Manual, yet since it is such a daunting task they often favor the idea of hiring someone not involved in their business to do so for them. The fees for operation manual writers is quite high and indeed it was my reasoning to write my own for our franchise company, which happens to specialize in Mobile Car Washing and Detailing. www.CarWashGuys.com . After completing the manual, which is always under constant revision as markets change and consumer buying behavior trends ensue, I found that not only was writing my own operations manual a cost savings; it was imperative.
A good Franchise operations manual will end up about 500 pages, mine ended up over 1000 typed pages with about 10,000 hand written notes and sub topic accumulation of forms and ideas of the past 20-years. After going thru this process of designing what I believe is the best franchise company ever created, I realized that you never fully understand your business completely until you put yourself, employees, customers, cash flow and procedures under a microscope. I can tell you that when you finally do this, you will be humbled indeed. I suppose that is a good thing, even though us entrepreneurs seem to have above average egos.
So with this said let me first say, I cannot give you our manuals for free, generally our perfected business model is sold in the form of a franchise and the franchise fees are generally $20,000 up front. But as an entrepreneur I will give the basic outline, which you need to write your own. Which if you intend to franchise your current business, I highly recommend you do it yourself or with a close in-house team. If you choose to hire a writer, pay a little extra and spend a little more time putting all your ideas into a tape or digital recorder so that the true important details are not lost in the political correctness of a Manual Writer. Remember I am in a service, home based franchise company and you company will be slightly different and therefore your manual will also be somewhat modified, but I assure you this is where you need to start. Try to have at least 20-pages for each item and then once you state using bullets, paragraphing, formatting and illustrations you should be closer to 35-40 pages for each topic. Here is the outline and best of luck and continued success in your business.
OFFICIAL OPERATIONS MANUAL
II. COMMUNITY RELATIONS
III. CUSTOMER RELATIONS
IV. MEDIA RELATIONS
V. EMPLOYEE RELATIONS
VI. VENDOR RELATIONS
VII. OTHER FRANCHISEE RELATIONS
VIII. FRANCHISOR RELATIONS
IX. LOCAL GOVERNMENT RELATIONS
X. BUSINESS COMMUNITY RELATIONS
XI. COMPETITION RELATIONS
XII. ABOUT VEHICLE
XIII. MAINTENANCE OF EQUIPMENT
XIV. ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS
XV. WATER PURIFICATION
XVI. INTER COMPANY PROCEDURES
XVII. ACCOUNTING AND BILLING
XVIII. BANKING AND CREDIT CARDS
XXI. COMPUTER PROCEDURES
XXII. SUPPORT (COMPUTERS)
XXIII. SCHEDULING TIPS
XXIV. QUALITY CONTROLS
XXVIII. WASHING PROCEDURES (VEHICLES)
XXIX. INDUSTRIAL AND SPECIALIZED SERVICES
XXX. TERRITORY LIMITATIONS
XXXI. RECORDS TO BEAT
XXXII. UNDERSTANDING OUR FOUNDER, COMPANY HISTORY
XXXIII. FUTURE OF FRANCHISOR
XXXIV. FOUNDER'S MESSAGE
"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs
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