As a franchisor, your most valuable asset is your franchisee. Training, mentoring and fostering their achievements will provide your greatest return. Once the franchise is operational, they are a tremendous source of information. Gathering data from the franchisee creates opportunity to identify trends and optimize performance. When presented in easy to read charts, graphs and graphics, the data provides a direct path for immediate action.  Creating actionable data is the key to optimization.


Know Your Business Objectives

The first step in obtaining actionable data is determining your business goals.  Take your broadest goals and narrow them down to the smallest measurable action that impacts this goal. For example: A popular massage franchise has a business objective to “educate patrons on improving their overall well-being through massage.”  


By identifying measurable things that help achieve this goal, you can break it down to actionable data.  For example: How many educational pamphlets are ordered monthly, how many times the "massage for well-being" video is viewed in the lobby/reception area, the number of well-being consults scheduled and completed. Looking at these numbers can lead to conclusions on how well you’re achieving this business objective. If your top performing franchise is going through 150 educational pamphlets per week, and the lower performing franchise is only going through 25, then immediate action can take place to re-train the franchisee and their staff on patron orientation and education -- including pamphlet-handouts. 


Create Less Work, Not More

Once you’ve identified the actionable data, make sure the data works for you and you’re not working for the data. Make sure your data collection provider returns your data in a manner that leaves no questions on what your next action should be -- A good data collection provider will do the data interpretation work for you. In turn, you can use the data to analyze franchisees’ growth – which franchisees are hitting it out of the ballpark, and which are under-performing. Comparing franchisee’s data is the best way to recognize your power-houses, and mentor stragglers. Publishing franchisee’s profit-and-loss data (for all franchisee’s to see) can prove an effective means of motivation and collaboration. Under-performers can see their own potential and set attainable goals and create strategies to improve. Additionally, franchisors at the corporate level can identify struggling locations quickly before they fall too far behind.


Track Employee Performance

Employee tracking can be valuable in measuring sales performance and is a straightforward key performance indicator (KPI); but turning the KPI data into action data is what optimizes your data. Recognizing and rewarding the rock-stars is one way to create immediate action. Then, investigating root causes for under-performers and providing mentoring and additional training can promote immediately positive change.


Identify Employee Fraud

Whenever an employee or franchisee handles money, there is potential for fraud. Identifying fraud may not be the first KPI you think of when setting up your data collection system, but in doing so, you could potentially prevent great loss due to fraud. Simply measuring the number of cancelled or voided transactions by employee, for example, could warrant an investigation and point to an issue. 


Systems for Data Collection

Luckily we’ve moved from arduous manual data collection systems; and the systems are now more sophisticated, more robust and more user friendly.  Franchisors who have no data collection system, or an antiquated system, can rest assured there are options for data collection systems that seamlessly integrate into existing POI systems and create immediate actionable data for improvement, with little or no down time and complete support and end-user training.   Obtaining this data can immediately help franchisors achieve business goals and create strategic tools to optimize performance across their franchise network.