Your Franchise Operation Manual Must Answer these 14 Questions

Franchise Operation Manual
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When you win a franchise, the franchisor will give you a business blueprint outlining the steps you must take to manage your firm successfully. Following the guidelines in this franchise operation manual protects and provides the brand’s intellectual property and quality goods/services. In a nutshell, it tells you what boundaries you should work within. This blueprint serves as both a design manual and an operating manual for a franchise. This document’s principal goal is to provide you with information on operating the firm; it’s neither persuasive nor sentimental. Instead, it’s short, to-the-point, and filled with charts, graphs, and other visual aids. Confidential information concerning the franchisor’s business processes, procedures, and operations is contained in the operations handbook. That is to say; it covers the “how-to” manuals that make things simple for the franchise owner. The franchisor also uses this document to advise the franchisees on various business aspects, including marketing, procurement, and other aspects of operations. Franchisees can purchase products and ingredients only from specific suppliers.

Franchise Operation Manual: Contents

Each franchise system may have a different layout or format. The operations manual may take the form of traditional print or digital content like videos. Whatever format the franchisor uses, as long as they get the message over, is fine. There are numerous themes covered in this article, including:

Franchise Operation Manual: Confidentiality

The franchisee must be made aware in the document that it contains confidential information and must be kept confidential at all times. The introduction then explains what the manual will do and how it should be utilized in the franchise system. It also mentions any manual upgrades and any appropriate legal disclaimers.

Defining the Franchise

The manual’s second goal is to provide information about the brand to the franchisee. It’s an opportunity for the franchisor to introduce the company to the new franchisees. In this area, franchisees are given the authority to reproduce the brand’s high standards and excellence in their new ventures. Franchisees work with the parent company as business partners, even if they aren’t technically partners under the law. They should be able to mimic the company’s mentality with the help of this section of the document. As a result, franchisees and their staff can adhere to the policies and procedures of the parent firm, particularly in customer service. Additionally, under the “Our Story” section, franchisees should learn about the company’s founders, management team, and operating procedures. It should also inform them about the possible clients, services, and goods available to them.

Business Operations Playbook

A Franchise operations manual can include information on how the firm itself runs. In this case, the franchisor instructs the franchisee on its operations and the proper processes for carrying them out through training the franchisee. This section outlines the company’s products and/or services. As a result, this section is divided into two parts: a summary and an explanation. Some of the information contained in this section includes the following:
  • Offer: Services/Products
  • How to Pitch & Sales Strategy
  • Process: Product/Service Development
  • Pricing: Price Modelling & Competitive Pricing 
  • Exclusive Supplier Listing
  • Customer Support & Service
  • Human Resource for Service Excellence
  • Accounting for Financial Evaluation

Franchise Marketing & Development

The manual’s fourth goal is to educate franchisees on their responsibilities in selling their goods and services within their region. A segment of the franchise agreement is devoted to educating the franchisee on how to market a franchise and run the firm properly. As a result of this training, the franchisee is more equipped to increase sales. This section’s material includes facts and figures on:

Franchise Supply Chain & Operations

Additionally, an operations handbook teaches franchisees about the complete supply chain, including acceptable ingredients in the case of a restaurant or food chain. This section details all of the ingredients needed to create the company’s distinctive flavors or styles. The document also explains where to find these chemicals and how to buy them from licensed distributors. Recipes, limits, signage and other product and brand compliance instructions can all be found in this area. Most of the time, this part serves as a quick reference.
  • Accredited suppliers/partners
  • Maintainance Insurance 
  • Permitted Ingredients & Services
  • Space Construction & Ambience Design
  • Guidance on Management Systems
  • Supplier Approval Solicitation Method
  • Standard Operating Manual for Emails & Calls
In conclusion, every standard franchise operating manual must answer the following questions-
  1. Why did you start your business?
  2. What are the major accomplishments of your organization?
  3. What are some of your motivational case studies?
  4. What is your company’s culture?
  5. What is the already accomplished & projected growth vision of your company?
  6. What are you selling? Goods or Services?
  7. How much are you selling, and how are you selling it?
  8. How do you develop and prepare what you sell in goods or services?
  9. What is the production process?
  10. What is the pricing, and how is it unique from competitors given the value?
  11. Who are your exclusive suppliers of our goods or services?
  12. How do you handle customer service?
  13. How do you manage employees? 
  14. How and at what frequency do you evaluate your loss and income statement?
Different businesses and industries will have a different franchisor operating manual. However, most of the information presented here is typical of what you’d find in a regular franchise operation manual.