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Know-how free : the end of the copied-pasted ?

For Fanny Simon, author of a report unveiled to the Interviews of the Franchise, the adaptation of the know-how is indispensable. During the Interviews of the

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Know-how free : the end of the copied-pasted ?

For Fanny Simon, author of a report unveiled to the Interviews of the Franchise, the adaptation of the know-how is indispensable.

During the Interviews of the franchise* organized the 27th of November, the French Federation of the franchise, presented a study on the fundamental role of the know-how in networks and brands. Fanny Simon, a professor at the University of Rouen, worked with a team of five researchers on this key theme of the franchise. Interview.

Express : what Is the concept of know-how in the franchise ?

Fanny Simon : This is all the practical information transmitted by the franchisor to the franchisees. Thanks to the experience it has acquired, the franchisor has the business methods, technical, logistics, computer.... tested and approved for use that allow for the reiteration of his concept. This know-how is secret (it must not be disclosed), substantial (it provides a competitive advantage for the franchisee and the consumer) and identified (it is made in writing in a manual operation). Franchisees are required to apply and abide by them.

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By definition, the know-how is uniform and must be reproduced to the letter. What are the benefits of this standardization ?

standardizing their offers, networks guarantee to consumers of live the same experience. Irrespective of the place of installation, the customer must find points of sale that are identical, with the same products or the same services, with a decoration similar to the standard prices.... This uniformity helps to ensure the consistency of the brand image of a brand, and reinforces the cohesion of franchisees who apply common methods. The standardization of a concept also allows the franchisor to achieve economies of scale : for example, it can negotiate good prices with suppliers because the volumes of supply are substantial.

Isn't it risky, at the time of the in-depth personalization to the extreme, to make a copied of standardized methods ?

in the Face of changing consumer behaviour, more and more franchises to adapt their offer and their know-how. They are evolving their methods and their practices in particular to meet the specificities of local markets or areas of settlement. Some networks offer the opportunity to the franchisees to offer services or products complementary : regional dish in a sign of restoration, local wine in a supermarket... other brands are declining their know-how according to the format of the points of sale. It is often the case in the restoration that offers multiple surfaces for sale : large institutions on the outskirts, concepts, smaller in the centre of town, the landscaped spaces on the areas of motorways or at train stations. According to the configuration, the know-how is suitable.

In the majority of cases, these are franchisors who are driving this type of adaptations. Franchisees may also be contributors of ideas ?

The autonomy of franchisees is restricted, but these are business leaders and entrepreneurs to full-fledged, they can propose their ideas. In some networks, they are even encouraged through platforms for exchange of good practices. Their initiatives, which often relate to the communication, the diversification of the offer or the improvement of marketing methods, can be repeated and generalized to the whole network.

Some networks are more open than others to the changes proposed by the franchisees?

it All depends on the degree of maturity of the brand and the condition of his market. When its environment is subject to strong technological developments, or highly regulated, the head of the network is at the origin of innovations to implement. It does not tolerate virtually no adjustments and the margin is low for franchisees. Conversely, when the market is new, the franchisor takes strongly into account the feedback of the franchisees, as well as information from the outside. It then dynamically evolve its know-how devices, while maintaining the uniformity of its original know-how.

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* Organized by the Federation of deductible franchise, the November 27, 2018. Report of research conducted by the universities of Caen (Nimec), Rennes and Saint-Etienne.

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