Joining the British Franchise Association involves a thorough accreditation of a franchisor’s history and standards, which is why membership is important for the credibility of any brand that’s proud of its model and wants to attract the best franchisees to its network.
Members commit themselves to comply with the terms of the following bfa policies and procedures:
- The Code of Ethical Conduct
- The Disciplinary Procedure
- The Complaints Procedure
- The Appeals Procedure
Members also agree to:
- comply with the Code of Advertising Practice as published by the Advertising Standards Authority.
- provide to the association any non-confidential information relating to their franchise business or relating to the standing and qualifications of its directors, as may be requested by an authorised official of the association.
- provide a full-time official of the association access (at reasonable times and on reasonable notice) to confidential information relating to the franchise and its standing (on the understanding that such information remains confidential to the authorised official).
The bfa operates an informal conciliation scheme, and facilitates mediation and arbitration schemes. These services are available to franchisor members and franchisees who jointly agree to the use of these schemes.
Members of the association also seek to comply with the spirit and intent of the Guidelines to Best Practice as published by the association from time to time. In respect of both the foregoing general conditions of membership, and the following specific terms, whilst the association will use its best endeavours to establish the eligibility of an applicant, the onus for demonstrating that the criteria have been met on initial accreditation or reaccreditation lies finally with the applicant.
All Full and Associate members of the bfa must meet four key criteria: that the business is viable, franchisable, ethical and fully disclosed.
These principles underpin the accreditation process before membership is granted. As part of their application, franchisors are expected to demonstrate how they meet these standards and provide evidence of the same, where appropriate.
- Viable: The business will have evidence to show that the product or service is saleable, and at a level of profit that will sustain a franchised network.
- Transferable: There is a means for the transfer of the know-how to a new operator at arm’s length, essential if the business is to be franchised.
- Ethical: The franchise is structured and operated in accordance with the ethical principles set out in the European Code of Ethics for Franchising, which covers matters of advertising, recruiting, selecting, and interactions with franchisees. The applicant’s franchise agreement is formally assessed.
- Disclosed: All information on the business that is material to the franchise proposition and contract is disclosed without ambiguity to prospective franchisees.