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Toward the Franchise Operations Manual of the Future

Evan Hackel

Now, thanks to modern technology, the big thick franchise manuals of the past are disappearing and being replaced with something far better. At Tortal Training, we are tossing aside big printed operations manuals and replacing them with new electronic versions that:

  • Look and function like websites and are completely interactive.
  • Have content that is searchable and accessible. If a franchise owner needs immediate information or training on using a franchise’s inventory systems, for example, he or she can jump right to that content.
  • Have links to appropriate training embedded in the manual, right where they belong. If current and future franchisees are consulting the manual about opening a new store, for example, they can jump right to the training programs they need.
  • Interface with a franchise’s Learning Management System (LMS), which tracks exactly who is taking company training, where they are located, whether they have completed their training, earned certification, are selling more, and other key metrics.
  • Can be instantly updated and enhanced with new or revised content and training options. You can’t do that with an old-fashioned printed operations manual. But a modern electronic manual can evolve and become a living, growing resource for everyone in your franchise system.
  • Can automate the delivery of communications to franchise owners that can include invitations to take new training courses, to attend your annual franchise conference or regional owners’ councils, to be sure to use new signage and displays, and more.

Your Electronic Franchise Manual Can Be Used in Powerful New Ways

For example, Tortal Training is encouraging franchise companies to let prospective new franchise buyers log onto the manual, enroll as users in the franchise’s Learning Management System, and take company training. What a powerful way to bring prospective new owners into your franchise family and encourage them to buy.

You can post the names of prospective new owners in a special section of your manual and invite them to take part in training that:

  • Gives a high-level overview of your franchise’s history, products, customers and brand.
  • Covers the basics of what a franchise is and what responsibilities and opportunities they will have when they become owners.
  • Gives access to dozens or hundreds of training courses that let them understand how they will open their locations, merchandise what you sell, use company signage and displays, take part in your marketing programs, hire employees, and be fully supported by your resources and systems.
  • Provides the opportunity to take critical courses on safety (for all franchises), food safety and preparation (for beverage and food service franchises), and more.
  • Alleviates pre-purchase anxiety by teaching them about insurance, business finance, and buying or renting real estate to house their franchises.
  • Clearly explains the process of becoming one of your franchise owners.
  • Parts the curtains and shows prospective buyers how they will interact with the franchise company. They will attend your annual convention, become part of your franchise councils, and begin an exciting and successful life as members of your franchise family.

Your Franchise Manual Can Energize Communications Too

We help franchises offer exciting new communications options that can include:

  • Short weekly or monthly podcasts of key information that are emailed to all current and potential franchisees.
  • Fun games that work like Jeopardy and other popular game shows that are emailed to all current and potential franchisees.

 Long Live the Modern Franchise Operations Manual!

A modern electronic operations manual can increase your franchise’s growth and success in ways you never thought possible. It can breathe new life into all your operations, become a powerful sales tool to attract new franchisees, make your current franchisees happier and more committed, and build a franchise brand that engages and delights customers.