What Does a Franchise Business Need in an Accounting System?
In the ever-changing landscape of franchising, operating at peak efficiency can be difficult without the right team and tools behind it. One such tool is a franchise accounting system - a software that automatically manages your bookkeeping (invoices, expenses, funding, etc.). However, these programs are usually made to focus on businesses other than franchising. That is not to say that these are useless to you, but there are a key features that your software should have to complement your franchise operations, rather than make it a headache for you to operate.
1. It should be able to gather data from multiple locations
As a franchisor, there will be (or was) a time where expansion is your number one priority. If you had the capital, you would set up a branch in every profitable location possible, but can your franchise accounting system handle it? Your program will inevitably be flooded by waves of data coming from many locations of differing distances - not to mention that it will have to send data back as well.
You need a system that can seamlessly integrate with your multiple locations without causing problems or confusion. Your program’s dashboard should show you the data you need to know in a comprehensible manner regardless of the heavier load. If your system cannot do this, you only have two options: (1) throw away all of your plans for expansion and settle for your one establishment, or (2) find a better accounting system.
2. It should be accessible to all personnel involved
Naturally, the personnel in your faraway branches need a means of admission to your system. Whether it be the employees checking their salaries, or the franchisees wondering about their funding, people will need a way to access the data or calculating power hidden inside the programming.
However, the operative word here is “involved.” It should also limit access to those that don’t have authorisation. Better if it allows you to segment the data, to allow a person to only see the data relevant to them. For example, an employee can see their salaries, but not your tax records, business expenditures, and other confidential information.
3. It should allow for better collaboration
For franchisor accounting, collaboration between groups kilometres away from one another is essential to keep the machine running smoothly. Payrolls, tax forms, documents, and other important items are constantly brought to and fro in each location. To better uphold this exchange, the people in charge of such tasks should be able clearly communicate with their counterpart on the other side. Without it, how will you ever know if that important document is already on their way to you, or that a certain branch needs more help? A franchising system should make you feel like you’re working together face-to-face even if they’re in a completely different land.
4. It should consider the state or country’s laws
In accounting for franchise, new branches mean a new set of laws and regulations that they have to follow. It could be a different state or an entirely new country, but there are discrepancies among them. It may not always be as pronounced as the different laws between Australia and Japan, but even the most minor rules must be observed. Likewise, your accounting should reflect your understanding of the law and adhere to them. For example, it should follow that certain country’s tax laws when it comes to salaries, or follow the proper paperwork.
If you find any accounting system that features these components in their programming, you can be sure that they would perfectly complement your business franchise.
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