Hear directly from the home care brand’s leading franchisees
Three female members of the Right at Home network have been announced as finalists for the EWIF Awards 2022. Lucy Campbell, CEO, has been shortlisted for the Woman Franchisor of the Year award. Having won the award for the previous two years, Lucy is hoping to make it a hat-trick this year. She’s nominated for her dedication to the network in leading the way for the future of care.
Lucy said: “With women still outnumbered in the boardroom it’s excellent to see both Right at Home and the franchise industry as a whole challenging the status quo, with awards like this giving confidence to women who are building successful careers in business or considering starting their own business.”
Heather Wehrle, who leads the teams for marketing, recruitment and training at Right at Home’s national office, is a finalist for the Woman Franchise Employee of the Year award in recognition of her tireless efforts to change negative perceptions of the homecare industry, and to create rewarding career pathways for staff across the Right at Home network.
With staff recruitment one of the biggest challenges facing social care after Brexit and the pandemic, Heather’s teams have created a plethora of new tools and resources for franchisees and achieved superb results in digital marketing to drive enquiries to the network’s careers pages.
Heather said: “I absolutely love the team we’ve built at Right at Home national office - we’ve achieved some really fantastic things in the last year, but none of it would have been possible without their hard work and commitment.
“It’s a real honour to be nominated for this award and to be recognised among so many inspirational women in franchising.”
And Julie Houston, owner of Right at Home North Cheshire and Leigh, is hoping to build on her success as an EWiF award winner in 2018 when she collected the New Woman Franchisee of the Year after 18 months of trading.
Now running an Outstanding-rated business with a turnover significantly over £1m, Julie is celebrating a phenomenal year of growth that has seen her extend her North Cheshire territory and open her second CQC-registered office in Lymm.
Here Julie discusses her experiences in the Right at Home network, which she joined after leaving a corporate banking career in 2017.
Why I started a care franchise
I started to look at the care sector after going through a family experience that was really quite bad; I thought: ‘There simply has to be a better way.’
I looked at a number of franchises and Right at Home just felt right, instantly, from the first conversations. The openness, friendliness, the quality and the fact that everybody genuinely cares about what they do. Their values were exactly what I would want for my family.
When we met, I immediately felt comfortable with their passion and vision for the future of the brand, and especially appreciated how rigorous they were in the recruitment process.
It felt like a perfect fit; it was exactly the kind of care model that I wanted to deliver.
The most satisfying aspects of my business
You’re changing people’s lives, every day. I think the passion and drive for what Right at Home offers comes out at all levels. We all want to make a difference, which drives us on, so we can help more people.
Some days are extremely hard, as with running any business, but we get fantastic support from the national office team. And when an email drops in from a client’s family saying ‘you’ve made a real difference to our lives’, it’s just lovely – it’s a leveller and it makes all the hard work so worthwhile.
The success we’ve seen so far has surpassed my expectations. I expected it to be very hard work, but the support and guidance from Right at Home has really enabled me to drive the business forward.
A high point for me was achieving an Outstanding rating from the Care Quality Commission on our first full inspection – that was a huge boost to the whole team and testament to their focus on quality.
Right at Home also encouraged me to enter the EWiF awards and I was delighted to win the New Woman Franchisee of the Year 2018, as well as the Right at Home RightStart Award. The awards provide our business with credibility and visibility in the local community.
My typical day
Do I have a typical day?! Not really! Every day is very different, which is one of the things I love about it. I’m typically in the office around 8.00 am, looking at what calls we’ve got, catching up with the team, finding out what’s happening in relation to staff and clients and getting a general overview.
Then I’ll tend to look at some of the financials, look at strategy, and then hopefully in the afternoons get out and do some community engagement. It’s very mixed.
The impact on my life
I started this business because I felt very passionately about providing fantastic care because some of what I saw was not what I’d want for my family. I absolutely love it.
Yes, it can be very sad, and it can be hard, but the upside is you’re changing people’s lives and helping them at a point in their lives when they need the support. It’s so important to do it well, with respect and with dignity.
I’ve been able to take real fulfilment from being able to give people who are ageing a better quality of life.
At a glance
Number of franchised outlets:
Location of units:
England and Wales – prime territories still available
Up to £130,000
Minimum required capital:
Kate Dilworth, 07825 047344, firstname.lastname@example.org