global franchise newsletter sign up graphic

Stay in the know and receive the latest international franchising news, insight and investment opportunities

close catfish

How brands can successfully expand internationally in 2021

How brands can successfully expand internationally in 2021

What franchisors need to know when it comes to exporting their brand, from concept adaptations to cultural differences.

Keep up to date with the latest Global Franchise News sent straight to your inbox. Sign up here.

When taking on the assignment of international expansion, franchisors must understand the requirement for a high level of deliberate planning and intentionality. The complexities that naturally come with the development of brands beyond their domestic borders make the task different from growth within their home country.

Express Employment Professionals was founded in 1983 and began franchising in 1985. Over the past three and a half decades, we’ve grown to more than 810 locations across the United States and Canada, leaving us with only nine to 10 per cent of potential space left for domestic franchise development. We recognized fairly quickly that with limited opportunities available in North America, we needed to consider expansion to other regions that were logical for our business. Through our growth, we realized there are key variables that need to be considered prior to advancing into international territories.

Cultural and business differences

International expansion doesn’t necessarily mean executives can take their brand and place it in a different country without making any adjustments. Business operations are dictated by the social and cultural standards in each country across the globe. Therefore, brands need to be mindful of where they are planning to put their footprint next, and partner with the appropriate organizations to assist in entering the respective market. How a company does business in America might not work in every country, but there are some areas where it could work efficiently. For example, in countries where English Common Law is practiced (including Australia, India and South Africa, among others), business laws are similar, in addition to the legal climate. However, this is where the similarities end.

“Business operations are dictated by the social and cultural standards in each country across the globe”

When we entered South Africa in 2002, we were an immature brand, and success was limited for a good amount of time. With only 17 years under our belts in the States, we were still a fairly young franchisor and didn’t have the proper support structure in place which forced us to face some growing pains as we were trying to accomplish international operations.

Time zone challenges

Parents tend to say that if you have one child, it changes your life. If you have two, it’s more than double the work. The same analogy applies to international expansion, so when you begin to work in another country, adding staff in the different time zones is vital as more support is critical for success. A new headquarters office isn’t necessary, and franchisors can even contract out support, but no matter the avenue taken, the staff must understand the market.

Moving into Australia and New Zealand, we immediately observed challenges with communication at our U.S.-based call center due to the various time zones. To combat the problem, we had to either open a 24/7 call center or create a presence in each market to offer the necessary support.

Being open-minded and adapting

All leaders who took their companies and concepts overseas will tell you there is a gained appreciation on how differently business is seen in the United States. In many foreign markets, business takes a backseat to life, which is unfamiliar to Americans. In South Africa specifically, businesses will begin shutting down two weeks before Christmas and will stay closed until mid-January. Individuals cannot underestimate the massive cultural differences that exist and will need to make it a priority to listen, understand, and adapt to these norms.

“In many foreign markets, business takes a backseat to life, which is unfamiliar to Americans”

Changing the entirety of your business model isn’t necessary as the pure logistics of the brand will not change dramatically, but what is paramount is taking a look at the elements that are often overlooked and those that won’t translate to the market being pursued. Additionally, when you are not on the ground implementing regular methods that are executed time and time again domestically, there are complexities that arise. An example may be how one goes through a Franchise Disclosure Document.

When a franchisor has made his or her mark in a new territory, I’d recommend for them to be flexible and willing to listen to others. There are always fresh and unique ways to operate, and while tweaking to local norms in a new country, you can improve in your home market by taking the time to observe and bring back successful processes to your headquarters. International expansion is not solely taking your flag and planting it somewhere else, it is also bringing a flag back home.

THE AUTHOR

Steve Scully is the executive vice president of sales and marketing at Express Employment Professionals and has played an integral role in the international expansion of the country for six years.

Global Franchise Meets.

An inspirational new web video series where we meet the business leaders and influencers in International Franchising.

you may be interested in

franchise directory

  • TaxAssist Accountants

    Business & Professional Services, Financial Services, <100K, Featured

  • Cafe2U

    Food & Catering, Coffee, Take-away, <100K, Featured

  • 800 Pizza

    Food & Catering, Fastfood, Pizza, Take-away, Featured

view more
Connect with Linkedin Logo
Global White Logo Click Here
Close button

WHAT DO WE USE YOUR INFORMATION FOR?

Any of the information we collect from you may be used in one of the following ways: To personalize your experience (your information helps us to better respond to your individual needs) To improve our website (we continually strive to improve our website offerings based on the information and feedback we receive from you) To improve customer service (your information helps us to more effectively respond to your customer service requests and support needs) To process transactions your information, whether public or private, will not be sold, exchanged, transferred, or given to any other company for any reason whatsoever, without your consent, other than for the express purpose of delivering the purchased product or service requested. To administer a contest, promotion, survey or other site feature To send periodic emails The email address you provide for order processing, will only be used to send you information and updates pertaining to your order. Note: If at any time you would like to unsubscribe from receiving future emails, we include detailed unsubscribe instructions at the bottom of each email.

HOW DO WE PROTECT YOUR INFORMATION?

We implement a variety of security measures to maintain the safety of your personal information when you place an order or enter, submit, or access your personal information We offer the use of a secure server. All supplied sensitive/credit information is transmitted via Secure Socket Layer (SSL) technology and then encrypted into our Payment gateway providers database only to be accessible by those authorized with special access rights to such systems, and are required to keep the information confidential. After a transaction, your private information (credit cards, social security numbers, financials, etc.) will not be stored on our servers.

DO WE USE COOKIES?

Yes (Cookies are small files that a site or its service provider transfers to your computers hard drive through your Web browser (if you allow) that enables the sites or service providers systems to recognize your browser and capture and remember certain information. We use cookies to help us remember and process the items in your shopping cart, understand and save your preferences for future visits, keep track of advertisements and compile aggregate data about site traffic and site interaction so that we can offer better site experiences and tools in the future. We may contract with third-party service providers to assist us in better understanding our site visitors. These service providers are not permitted to use the information collected on our behalf except to help us conduct and improve our business.

DO WE DISCLOSE ANY INFORMATION TO OUTSIDE PARTIES?

We do not sell, trade, or otherwise transfer to outside parties your personally identifiable information. This does not include trusted third parties who assist us in operating our website, conducting our business, or servicing you, so long as those parties agree to keep this information confidential. We may also release your information when we believe release is appropriate to comply with the law, enforce our site policies, or protect ours or others rights, property, or safety. However, non-personally identifiable visitor information may be provided to other parties for marketing, advertising, or other uses.

THIRD PARTY LINKS

Occasionally, at our discretion, we may include or offer third party products or services on our website. These third party sites have separate and independent privacy policies. We therefore have no responsibility or liability for the content and activities of these linked sites. Nonetheless, we seek to protect the integrity of our site and welcome any feedback about these sites.

CHILDRENS ONLINE PRIVACY PROTECTION ACT COMPLIANCE

We are in compliance with the requirements of COPPA (Childrens Online Privacy Protection Act), we do not collect any information from anyone under 13 years of age. Our website, products and services are all directed to people who are at least 13 years old or older.

ONLINE PRIVACY POLICY ONLY

This online privacy policy applies only to information collected through our website and not to information collected offline.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Please also visit our Terms and Conditions section establishing the use, disclaimers, and limitations of liability governing the use of our website at globalfranchisemagazine.com/terms-conditions

YOUR CONSENT

By using our site, you consent to our online privacy policy.

CHANGES TO OUR PRIVACY POLICY

If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post those changes on this page

CONTACTING US

If there are any questions regarding this privacy policy you may contact us using the information below. All correspondence relating to the Website should be sent to: Global Franchise 21/23 Phoenix Court Hawkins Road Colchester Essex CO2 8JY Email: subscriptions@aceville.co.uk