Franchising Checklist


The route to franchising requires diligence and a strong attention to detail. The following list is a snapshot—listed in no particular order—of critical pieces you must assemble on your path to becoming a successful franchisor.

  • Develop a strong leadership and professional advisory team.
  • Secure proper capitalization. See these general guidelines.
  • Develop a timeline to franchise your business. See these general guidelines.
  • Develop systems that allow for support and quality control and effective communication system.
  • Document all business processes, procedures, and protocols in a well written Franchise Operations Manual.
  • Write a business plan outline including a one-year and five-year outlook, revisiting it every year and then again at five years; include an exit strategy if applicable.
  • Create an in-house compliance department that ensures acknowledgement and compliance with applicable registration and disclosure laws.
  • Join the International Franchise Association.
  • Register the franchise with the SBA (Small Business Administration).
  • Know the mission, core values, and vision of the company.
  • Develop and define royalty payments and reporting requirements.
  • Register your trademarks.
  • Develop a training and orientation program for new franchisees.
  • Define and create strong territories.
  • Develop a public relations strategy.
  • Establish relationships with key vendors.
  • Develop a potential franchisee screening documentation.
  • Draft your Franchise Disclosure Document (or FDD); this used to be called the uniform franchise offering circulars (or UFOC).
  • Draft a Franchise Agreement that protects both the interests of you the franchisor and the franchisee.
  • Evaluate applicable markets for over-saturation.
  • Develop stringent recruitment and selection criteria.
  • Find quality legal counsel.
  • Build strong relationships with franchisees.
  • Ask franchisees as many questions as you need to during the due diligence process.
  • Develop mechanisms for evaluating the key business measurements for the company and the franchisees.