FAQs about franchise operations manual

Why do you need a franchise operations manual?

A franchise operations manual is important for both franchisors and franchisees. For franchisors, it enables them to clearly set out quality standards and the procedures for day-to-day operations. For franchisees, they gain a deeper understanding of the ways in which they are required to run the business. It’s also an important document that clarifies each side’s roles and responsibilities and minimises the risk of legal action by either party.


What does a franchise operations manual contain?

An ever-evolving document, the franchise operations manual contains every detail that a franchisee should know to ensure that they run their franchise operations according to the franchisor’s requirements, business model and established standards. Although it is always subject to change and updates and it will depend on the industry and business of the franchisor, a franchise operations manual outline usually consists of the following sections:

  • Franchisor-franchisee relationship
  • Business processes and procedures
  • Brand identity
  • HR technicalities
  • Health and safety rules and regulations
  • Financial management details and systems
  • Monitoring
  • Complaints management
  • Marketing

Who prepares an operations manual?

In the past, operations manuals for franchises were prepared by the franchisors themselves.They had the most intricate knowledge of their business’ operations and requirements for success by producing a step-by-step outline of the steps involved in following the business model. Today, apart from franchise owners, operations manuals can also be created by a member of the franchisor’s team, a project manager or even an external third-party such as a franchise consultant or lawyer.


How do you write a franchise operations manual?

For those who would like to know how to write a franchise operations manual, the following steps are an important starting point for any franchise operation:

  • Clarify the franchisor-franchisee relationship 
  • Spell out the minimum standards for product/service provision 
  • Write the business processes, procedures and requirements for daily operations 
  • Offer detailed product information 
  • Provide a detailed overview of the brand, brand history, milestones, etc. 
  • Set out business policies and the processes to be followed in an emergency 
  • Discuss all aspects related to HR, staffing, training, recruitment, etc. in detail.

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