Why is it important to have a set uniform across your franchises? What should you consider when choosing a uniform and should you be funding the uniform?
These are very valid and important questions to think about in order to maintain what all marketers strive to achieve and that is brand consistency.
If you run a franchise network or you are looking to expand your business into one, it’s a good idea to do either of the following when it comes to uniforms:
1. Choose style or colour staff need to wear
Some franchises will choose a set uniform style they would like their franchisees employees to wear. This could mean that they give them the option to wear a shirt or polo for example but it must be in purple. Others may just be open to the idea of just having everyone wear the same colour and not style but it must be blue with navy pants. In this instance, the brand is compromised as there will be variations and interpretations on colours, tones and style of clothing. Employees may not be easily identified as the clothing worn may not be unique to the brand and there is no reinforcement of the brand across the stores.
2. Choose a preferred supplier
This is a step closer to achieving brand synergy, by choosing and promoting a preferred supplier a range can be set by the supplier and encourage franchises to order from this supplier. Incentives can be given for those who choose to order from the preferred supplier and there is more control around product, colours etc. Depending on the size of the franchise it would be ideal to put together a few options that complement each other to ensure the franchisees will be satisfied with the range making it more appealing for them to order from the same supplier.
3. Implement a uniform range to be worn across all sites and an exclusive supplier
The most effective option in achieving a consistent brand image and reinforcement of the brand across all sites/stores and create a team environment for employees is to implement a uniform range from an exclusive supplier. This means employees are only allowed to order from a contracted supplier and only from the designated range.
When choosing a uniform, key considerations are:
1. Does your current uniform need a refresh or total revamp
2. Choose a uniform that will be flattering on most and offer options in fit if applicable
3. Choose a style that won’t date within a minimum of 3 years
4. Keep in mind job roles and demographic of employees
5. On employment you can offer a key piece of the uniform to employees complimentary and the rest the franchise or employee pays for to encourage to the uptake.