Whether you are rolling out a new menu item or deploying new technology to streamline operations – there are always challenges in the franchise world. The balance for franchisors to drive innovation and adoption with the franchisee’s need to feel in control is a delicate relationship. As someone who has been involved in multiple franchise deployments of new POS solutions (Software and Hardware), here are some of the lessons learned from some of the most popular brands in the US:
- Form a Franchise Technology Panel – Get your most influential franchisees together and get their input and buy-in. At the end of the day, you are both trying to solve the same challenges and grow your business. What are those challenges and how is the new proposed technology going to help them eliminate those challenges and make more money?
- Let your Franchise Technology Panel take that message to the streets! Deliver a clear, consistent message, repeatedly. If you have a franchisee event, put the panel on the stage and let them tell the story and allow their peers to ask them questions. Company Newsletters, Internal Message Boards, and regional operator events are other great platforms to communicate your message.
- Offer an Incentive
- Buy-down the initial cost to help offset the investment. One benefit of Cloud POS solutions is that the expense your franchisees will incur is a consistent, easy monthly payment with limited up-front costs. Predictable spending is a beautiful thing.
- Offer leasing or financing options. Most POS companies have existing relationships with banking institutions that are prepared to offer competitive financing packages for restaurant technology.
- Incentivize your early adopters with special pricing. In return, ask them for testimonials to share with the remainder of your franchise community to get them on-board!
- Set a Deadline! At the end of the day – without a clear “who will do what by when” things have a tendency to fall apart. Your franchisees are busy people trying to grow their business and prioritize their plans. I can’t emphasize this last point enough – know when are your franchisees are expected to have the new solution installed and what will happen if they don’t!
Deployment of a new POS solution across your franchisee organization can be challenging but there are resources and tools available to set you up for success.