Though it’s easy to think of the brands of giant corporations first when thinking about certain products or services, small businesses represent more than 99.7% of all employers, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The appeal of launching a small independent or franchise business location derives from many factors. And, though many small businesses aim to get bigger, a lean business model for a given individual location of any business, even a chain, has advantages.
One of the most attractive aspects of a small franchise business model is having a small team of employees. This is beneficial for a business for a number of reasons.
Ability to Make Changes
There is an old saying that it takes a long time to turn a big ship—which means that the bigger the company, the harder it is to make needed changes. Unlike a behemoth corporation, a small franchise business can adapt easily as conditions in its local market shift.
A business with a tight model is much nimbler. And in times where the economy isn’t quite as booming as the business would like, the team is already lean, so layoffs typically aren’t necessary.
Not Required to Provide Benefits
Certain employee benefits requirements do not apply to very small businesses, which translates to a more robust bottom line for revenue for business owners.
An employer with five or more employees must provide workers’ compensation, which is insurance coverage to protect the owner if an employee is injured on the job or too ill to work. And an employer with fewer than 50 full-time employees is not obligated to provide health insurance, under the Affordable Care Act (although, they can consider doing so with the Small Business Health Options Program under the ACA).
If you have fewer than 25 employees, and you do choose to cover at least 50% of full-time employees’ premium costs, your business may be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit.
This advantage is simple math. Fewer employees mean a lower cost in salaries or hourly pay and a much lower cost in the physical footprint needed in the workplace.
A Sense of Family
Employees of small businesses form a unique bond with each other and with their employer. Each employee gets to shine, rather than be a faceless drone in a cubicle among hundreds of others.
Team members get to interact with owners and really feel that they are an essential part of a tight-knit organization—and the lives of its customers—every day. As a result, employees in small business models typically have more satisfaction and passion for their work, which only benefits the business.
Why 101 Mobility’s Small Team Size Works So Well
One of the reasons a mobility and accessibility solutions franchise is a sound investment is its small human resources footprint. Its business model requires relatively few team members.
But the rewards can be exponential, both financially and in owner and staff satisfaction. A small team can change the lives of aging individuals by providing the accessibility tools to allow them to “age in place” in their beloved homes rather than relocate to a retirement or assisted living community.
“You’re typically going to start with a staff of three people,” says Mike Gardner, franchise development manager at 101 Mobility, one of the largest dealers of mobility and accessibility solutions in the United States.
These three roles are:
- Mobility Consultant (sales): This person often is the owner, with sales skills and customer service skills.
- Mobility specialist (installer): This role requires a construction background, experience in small engine repair, an aptitude for working with his/her hands, and good customer service skills.
- Customer care manager (office manager): This team member is organized, experienced in phone sales and showroom sales, has customer service skills and fields phone calls if you are not using the call center.
That last one is the one Gardner calls the “hub” of the business—the person who plays a key role in helping the business run.
“The customer care manager is the person in the office, answering the phone, doing scheduling, turning phone calls into appointments, and being there when deliveries of equipment arrive,” he says.
As mobility and accessibility franchise grows, it scales up its staff incrementally, according to increasing demand and needs. As the business grows, a 101 Mobility franchisee will often find themselves needing to hire an office manager, additional installation technicians, and/or inside salesperson, for example.
“Some of our larger locations have staffs of eight to 10 people, but you never really have a large employee or HR footprint,” Gardner explains.
Efficient Business Model
101 Mobility provides business development coaching for franchisees, plus training and certification for installation technicians. Franchisees also benefit from call center support for weekends and evenings if needed, but for the most part, each franchise location team is self-contained. Potential compensation for employees varies by locality.
“It’s a relatively small and easy to manage business model,” Gardner says, “but, with the right team in place, our franchisees find they are capable of handling quite a lot of business.”
To learn more about franchise opportunities with 101 Mobility, CLICK HERE to request more information and someone from our franchise development team will reach out to you shortly.