What do you believe is the single most important factor when choosing a franchise?
The reputation of the franchisor. Would the existing franchisees recommend them as a franchisor, would they do it all over again if they could go back and choose again?
Why should someone choose your franchise over other similar franchises?
We have an innovative low-cost, low-overhead model that is perfectly suited for our industry. We also lead our industry in service innovation, being the first among the IT franchises to move into managed service plans, VoIP, and cloud solutions.
What makes your industry attractive?
The need for IT support is constant and universal among both small businesses and also home users. With the evolution of things like e-commerce, online banking, search engine marketing, VoIP telephony, and cloud computing, there will always be a need for qualified consultants to help small business owners make the most effective and efficient use of their technology investment.
What types of qualities do you look for in potential franchisees?
It depends. Some people come to us with a technical background, intending to do the initial service work themselves. In those cases we're evaluating their tech skills as well as their people skills and willingness to work as part of a team. For others with a business background who will be hiring technicians, we look for management aptitude and the right personality, as well as sufficient capital to get the business off the ground in the first year.
What do your franchise fees and royalties cover?
Membership in the network, with all the benefits and support which that entails. This includes ongoing training, coaching, support, vendor discounts, free tools such as Autotask and CT-REBOOT, access to group health insurance, and rights to our extensive marketing library.
How do territories work for your franchisees?
In the USA we're based on the local business population and defined by zip codes.
Why has your franchise model been successful?
We listen to our franchisees and make sure every decision we make is based on what will make them more successful.
Where do you see your franchise in 5 years and 10 years?
Five years from now we will likely be predominantly focused on cloud computing solutions, and we can't predict where technology will be in ten years but we know CT will still be supporting more small businesses with their technology needs than any other network.
What is your favorite advice for new franchisees to help them succeed?
Follow the plan, but ask for help along the way. You buy a franchise for the advice and guidance of people who know how to be successful - make sure you take advantage of it!
What would you tell potential franchisees that may be nervous about the financial burdens of starting a franchise?
It's important to be realistic about the financial start-up costs: make sure you have the recommended capital available. But talk with existing franchise owners too, they can share their experience on first year financials which may provide some reassurance.
On average, how long does it take to start a new franchise from the franchisees point of view?
It can be as little as two weeks, but is generally 8-16 weeks to get things rolling.