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How the British Franchise Association is connecting our community

How the British Franchise Association is connecting our community

Our strategic partnerships are promoting an inclusive and welcoming industry

It’s no secret that the British Franchise Association is evolving, along with the sector, and that we’re adopting a much more all-encompassing role as an industry hub these days - a move away from our past as a pure standards-based organisation.

Now, under the tenure and stewardship of CEO Pip Wilkins, we’re much more about promoting an inclusive and welcoming industry.

Proactive engagement

Yes, standards remain at the core of what we do, but we’re working towards a vision of proactive engagement and promotion of the entire franchise sector now. We will always serve our members, but we wish to continue building on that and shout about this fantastic sector to the wider world.

As much as we love to drive this activity and be at the heart of it, there’s no way we could absorb all these additional elements into our strategy without some of our incredible partners.

These are strategic partnerships that are driving change and connecting the community for collective impact.

Inclusivity and equality

We’ve long flown the flag for inclusivity and equality in franchising, which will be an increasing area of focus for us.

2021 has seen us partner with Encouraging Women into Franchising, sponsoring and judging the EWiF 2021 Overall Woman in Franchising Award, supporting the launch of EWiF Scotland and inviting its involvement at our flagship Empowering Women in Business event.

We’re also co-producing The EWIF Guide to Franchising, so our work with this organisation is deeply embedded and far-reaching.

Building on our work in this area, we’ve started working with McDonald’s, who has diversity, equity and inclusion at its very heart.

Not only is it sponsoring our EWIB event, but the company also ran one of the bfa’s recent pop-up think tanks on - yes, you guessed it - diversity and inclusion.

We’re delighted to have acquired the Approved Franchise Association and to have welcomed AFA CEO Claire Robinson on board as our lifestyle ambassador. This amalgamation of the two associations brings the industry closer to a unified approach.

For our regional work, we need partners who understand the territories we’re working with. A shining example of this is the work we do in Scotland, supported by the team at Platinum Wave and a host of other experts and affiliates.

Health check

More recently, we’ve also teamed up with WorkBuzz, whose franchise satisfaction benchmark is now part of our world-leading franchise accreditation process.

This allows our members to receive a health check summary from WorkBuzz, following a confidential franchisee satisfaction survey.

Based on the feedback, franchisors will also be eligible to enter WorkBuzz’s Best Franchise Awards.

So it’s in this spirit of collaboration that we push forward as an association and as a sector - and I can’t help but feel that the best is yet to come.

The author

Emily Price is chief operating officer at the British Franchise Association.

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