Why Graduates Should Consider Franchising

Recent statistics from the British Franchise Association (NatWest bfa Franchise Survey) have revealed that there has been a surge in young entrepreneurs (under 30 years of age) successfully finding their way into work through franchising. This includes an evident rise in young graduates, who struggling to find employment, have opted to gain the relevant experience by successfully running their own company, with the help of franchising. 

Increased competition for graduate positions

The number of graduates within the UK is continuously rising, and in the UK alone the number of graduates has risen by 38% in 2013 (ONS) when compared with 1992. Couple this with the fact that 1 in 5 graduates are out of work (ONS, 2013) and suddenly the competitive nature of the graduate job market is revealed. This is supported by a study (AGR) which revealed that approximately 69 graduates apply for each vacancy.

It’s no surprise then that graduates who are able to seek financial backing from their parents or grandparents are seeking to gain employment through franchising. Katie Moffatt, Shareholder and Director of Pyjama Drama, supports this claim: “We’ve definitely seen an increase in younger applicants recently, some of whom are graduates and some even younger; 18 and 19 years olds. A couple were exploring other options to going to university, while others seemed to be struggling to find jobs that would get them anywhere near the career ladder”

Graduate underemployment

Underemployment is a term which; 

“Occurs when a graduate works in a role which the associated tasks do not normally require knowledge and skills developed through higher education to enable them to perform these tasks in a competent manner” (Elias and Purcell, 2013:1)

With this said, the recent survey from ONS (2013) indicated that nearly half, 47% of recent graduates have obtained employment status in non-graduate jobs. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that graduates, who have been repeatedly encouraged to make their own work, are finally listening to this advice; and armed with a strong heritage in a social and cultural environment that celebrates entrepreneurship, graduates are not only anticipating that they may have to work for themselves, run their own business, but actively seek to do so.

Franchising is the perfect platform from which to do this, particularly as the formula of tried-and-tested model and franchisor support do much to supplement the relative inexperience of those newly entering the workforce. Of course, like any business, a franchise requires a considerable investment but with parents helping with capital or acting as guarantors, in the way many now are helping their adult children to mount the property ladder, there are ways in which a franchise can become a ‘family’ enterprise. As virtually any kind of business or vocation can be explored in the franchise format, it’s an area of research any new graduate embarking on their career will find worthwhile.

Franchises present the perfect opportunity for graduates

A franchise is an established brand that grows through licensing, for a fee, its business model, goods and services to individuals or business partners, whilst also providing ongoing training and support. The head company is the franchisor and licensees are known as franchisees.

There are many young graduates who have successfully joined a franchise and developed their skills running their own company, with the power of their chosen franchise behind them to offer advice, marketing and a strong support network. If you’re interesting in joining a franchise, be sure to follow our useful advice below. 

Franchising guide for graduates

If you’re a recent graduate and you are considering working for yourself, the concept of franchising is well worth investigating:

  • In the way of research, a good thing to check out is whether or not the franchisor potential business investment opportunity is a member of the British Franchise Association (bfa). The bfa sets strict criteria for ethical standards that franchisors must meet in order join its ranks, so membership is a positive sign. The bfa also nurtures and encourages understanding of franchising and the sharing of information between its members and within the industry. Find out more about the bfa and its members at www.thebfa.org.
  • The bfa-supported Franchise Exhibitions, which take place throughout the year are an ideal starting place to meet a wide variety of franchise brands as well as meet franchise consultants, financial, legal and career path advisors. The events are packed with key speakers, real-life stories and seminars and are free to attend.

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