Thanks to Visiting Angels, care professional Lynn James is pursuing her business ownership dreams
Established in the US in 1998, Visiting Angels is one of America’s largest care franchises, with over 700 offices operating in six countries.
The first UK office for Visiting Angels launched in late 2017 and became the country’s first ‘carer centric’ in-home care provider.
Dan Archer, UK franchisor and managing director of the Sheffield pilot franchise territory, spearheaded the brand’s presence after demonstrating great success.
Within a year of launching, Dan and his team were awarded ‘Best International Office’ at Visiting Angels’ annual conference in Philadelphia, cited as the fastest growing office in the brand’s history. It’s this success that franchisees are championed to replicate.
A Visiting Angels franchisee for 12 months, Lynn James joined the franchise in 2020 with her husband Chris.
While working for care franchise Home Instead, Lynn had ideas of her own about how quality care could be delivered and how caregiving staff could be recruited and retained.
Then she discovered Visiting Angels and realised it gave her the solution to do things her way.
In the year that brought with it the pandemic and the worst economic crisis in over a decade, Lynn launched her Visiting Angels business in North Surrey.
She says: “I suspect a lot of people thought I was mad to launch a care business in the middle of a pandemic.
“The reality of it is that it just highlighted the important role that caregivers play in communities across the UK.
“I was so sure Visiting Angels was the best route to delivering quality care in my community, instead of placing things on hold and waiting out an economic downturn, I decided to launch my business when demand was high.”
Lynn has experienced all aspects of care, spotting opportunities for improvements as she progressed.
When she was searching for a solution to issues with underpaid and underappreciated caregivers, rushed client visits and a stretched workforce, Lynn came across a franchise opportunity that resolved each and every one.
“When I started to research Visiting Angels in more detail, I realised it was the answer I was looking for,” she says.
“The main issues I had identified could be fixed by one simple correction: placing caregivers at the heart of the community. It’s engrained into Visiting Angels’ culture to value the staff and that resonated with me massively. I was sold.
“In my previous role with another care franchise, I learned about the world of franchising.
“I saw how well it worked, recognised the support on offer and understood the benefits of investing in a much larger brand.”
After a first year including a global pandemic, the rapid growth of her franchise and Chris leaving his job to join her full-time in the business, Lynn was also recently inspected by the Care Quality Commission and received a ‘Good’ rating.
She says: “We’re ahead of target, growing well and ‘Good’ with CQC – what a first year!”
At a glance
US 1998. UK 2017
Number of franchised outlets:
70-plus worldwide. 22 UK
Location of units:
Minimum required capital:
Dan Archer. 07584 178458