What is a 'CRM' system and why is it invaluable?
To manage leads and opportunities within the franchise recruitment phase, you will find that a reliable Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is invaluable.
It will help you capture and track each lead and the activities that are performed in the process to convert that lead into a franchisee and ensure that process is as effective as it can be at every stage.
As a franchisor you have to focus on two main areas to grow your franchise network – the first is generating enquiries, or leads, and the second is ensuring those leads (which come at a cost), are handled in the best way possible in order to maximise the conversion into franchisees.
You may have heard of simple CRM packages such as Goldmine, or ACT! which are very popular with small businesses. As many of these require software installation and cannot be easily shared, once a lead is entered into these systems, it becomes very difficult to see how that lead is being progressed. You've effectively lost control of that lead and these leads are the life-blood of any franchise company. Even worse – if the person handling the franchise enquiries is not doing a good job or leaves, it becomes very difficult for anyone else to take over the existing system and know how it was used.
The ideal solution is a hosted online CRM system – this allows you to use a single system for the whole franchise recruitment process, where the franchisor retains control of all the data and can see what happens to it at anytime, and if the person in charge of handling franchise enquiries is not dealing with the leads effectively, you can pull it back from them and allocate it to someone else extremely easily, and even outsource it to an experienced franchise consultant.
Finally by having a single CRM system it is easy to feed the leads which come from various sources (such as the company website, call centre or advertising source) into an extremely efficient recruitment process from start to finish.
Did you know?
The type of franchise recruitment CRM system a franchisor first sets up is primarily defined by budget as well as a lack of understanding of the benefits a great system can offer from the start.
Most franchisors understand the need for a good 'back-office' system to manage a growing franchisee network, but don't apply the same logic to helping find franchisees in the first place!!
It is a very common mistake for franchise companies or recruiters to manage their franchisee recruitment process just using 'free' systems setup on Excel sheets, ACT! databases, Goldmine, Outlook contacts, or even sheets of paper! I know - That's how I worked 10 years ago!
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