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4 Questions Franchise Owners Should Ask Themselves Before the New Year

franchise owner looking over business analytics

2024 is nearly here, which means it’s an excellent time to plan and review your franchise’s goals. Regularly evaluating your business plans and strategy is vital to keep you focused on the most important factors within your control.

As you dust off your strategic business plan, there are four basic questions you should be asking yourself to drive profitability, growth and time savings for your franchise.

Here are a few guiding questions to consider:

  • What can be automated?
  • What can be outsourced?
  • Does my franchise qualify for any tax incentives this year? What can I plan for next year?
  • Can I take a vacation in 2024 and not worry about my franchise operations?

What can be automated?

The past couple of years have provided the necessary “rocket fuel” for automation virtually everywhere. Zappier, iPhone shortcuts, Alexa and Siri are examples of technology that allow us to put virtually anything in our personal lives on autopilot. Layer in the explosion of platforms like OpenAI, Baard and Claude, and the automation race is really heating up.

How can your franchise business keep up?

A large majority of franchise owners don’t have the time or background to mess around with monthly financials. They would prefer to press the “easy button.”

That’s why more and more franchises are investing in modernizing their technology — especially when it comes to business analytics tools. These tools automate financial processes and generate insights so that you can seamlessly put your franchise’s financials on autopilot, giving you back the time and energy to invest working on your business rather than in your business.

What can be outsourced?

When you’re a brand-new franchise owner, everything is new, exciting and fresh. Soon you begin to feel as though there isn’t enough time in the day. You start missing kids’ practices, losing sleep and thinking about whether your storefront is staffed.

A simple question to ask yourself is, “what can I afford to outsource?”

Most franchise owners begin with simple tasks that tend to eat up a lot of time. Things like bookkeeping, payroll and financials are easy items to investigate. Finding the right partner with efficient services and franchise industry expertise is a key investment opportunity for the new year.

Does my franchise qualify for any tax incentives?

Tax incentives are a great way to increase cash flow, but many franchise owners don’t consider them in their tax planning because they’re unsure whether they qualify for any. If any of the questions below align with your franchise plans in the next couple of years, you may be eligible for tax benefits.

  • Do you have capital expenditures planned over the next two to three years? Are you planning for any new equipment purchases? Are you considering new building renovations or expansions?
  • What are your hiring plans or forecasts over the next two to three years?
  • Do you have locations in other states? What are your capital expenditure and hiring plans for those locations?
  • Do you have any training planned for new or existing employees?
  • Does your company do research and development (R&D)? If so, what are your plans related to R&D work over the next two to three years?

Can I take a vacation in 2024?

One of the top statements I heard from franchise owners this past year was:

“I haven’t taken a vacation in years.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that more than 200 million workdays are lost each year because of depression, stress and anxiety. As a franchise owner, the fear of making payroll and generating new business can weigh heavily on one’s mental health.

When you feel the advantages of automating business processes, outsourcing where it makes sense and taking care of tax incentives, your business can function for a couple of weeks without your physical and mental presence.

At Creative Planning Business Services, we partner with franchise owners like you. We ensure you’re capitalizing on all the advantages of tax planning, automation and proper outsourcing in your business. We want you to take that elusive vacation and trust that your business is operating smoothly.

If you’re curious to learn more about our range of services designed for franchises, including outsourced accounting, payroll and business advisory, please contact us and we’d be happy to assist you.

This commentary is provided for general information purposes only, should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice, and does not constitute an attorney/client relationship. Past performance of any market results is no assurance of future performance. The information contained herein has been obtained from sources deemed reliable but is not guaranteed.


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