- Office Based
- Domiciliary Care
Right at Home UK is at the forefront of the fast-growing homecare market, specialising in private care which goes the extra mile. Our management franchise opportunity provides business owners with a fully supported, highly profitable venture into care.
With consistently high customer satisfaction ratings and superb performance evaluations by Care Regulators, across the network, we are making a positive difference to people every day, and are recognised as a trusted provider of outstanding quality care.
Established in 2011 by CEO, Ken Deary, Right at Home UK has 60+ locally-owned offices, nation-wide. Franchisees appoint office and CareGiver teams, so Clients can enjoy life, fully supported, in their own home.
Right at Home is dedicated to the success of its network, delivering strong sales and returns. As an award-winning franchise, Right at Home holds 5-star franchisee satisfaction for eight consecutive years. As a business giving back to the local community, it’s recognised on homecare.co.uk, as the most highly-recommended homecare provider.
Right at Home’s initial two-week RightStart training, and on-site coaching prior to opening, will give you everything you need, to grow a profitable and sustainable business.
As a Right at Home business owner, you’ll manage your own local office. This includes overseeing day-to-day operations, co-ordinating with your Registered Manager, recruiting high calibre CareGivers, and meeting Clients to ensure they are receiving the best possible care.
Right at Home owners also drive business development, connecting with their community through referral partnerships, or hosting community events to support vulnerable adults and provide a better understanding of illnesses like dementia.
Having it all when life begins
Multi-franchise owner Nikesh Karia turned 40 in 2017. He was ready for a new challenge which would make a real difference in his community, finding the solution in Right at Home. This is #WhyICare
For Right at Home franchisee, Nikesh, he didn’t think life could be any better than it was when he turned 40 at the beginning of 2017. He had a perfect family life, with a wife he adored and three children he loved being around. A beautiful home.
And a career which offered him travel experiences he knew others could only dream of. “I managed large global projects, which meant I was often travelling to the States, Singapore, or Kiev, where I could experience new cultures and cuisine from some of the world’s most amazing countries. But,” he says, “something was missing. I felt hollow. I didn’t have a sense of making a difference to anyone’s life. And I was away from my children more than I wanted to be.”
Having worked in some of the fast-paced, high-flying industries, such as corporate banking and media, Nikesh was ready for something more fulfilling. “Where I was in life, my next step didn’t need to be dictated by finances. I could choose something to really allow me to develop personally, whilst engaging with the community I grew up with.”
Already co-owner of a fitness franchise with his wife Kala, Nikesh started to think about what he stood for, now he had turned 40. “We both come from large, close families, so understand the importance of close relationships and the support they provide; especially in life’s later years. Wanting to be involved in the care industry, we’d had our eye on home care for a couple of years, but hadn’t really settled on the right option. Having personally experienced the difference quality care makes to a loved one, finding the right brand was crucial for us. And having the support of the franchise behind us, was as much a part of our decision-making process.”
Connecting with quality
Nikesh researched all his options, and attended the British Franchise Association exhibitions. It was there he met the team from Right at Home. “As I spoke to Right at Home I really felt we connected with their ethos and with what they want to accomplish in the industry. This resonated with what we wanted to do.”
Right at Home offers exceptional home-based care, with the collective desire for clients to retain total control over the assistance they receive, thereby protecting their independence, as they live, supported by Right at Home, in their own home. Offering quality of care is about going the extra mile, as we would for our own families. “They are very authentic,” Nikesh says. “The more I spoke to them, the more I discovered, and the stronger the connection.”
Connecting with support
Right at Home’s RightStart new owner programme, which guides franchisees through every step of starting-up their own business, and many of them credit it with the confidence they had for their business from the outset. “The support from the National Office has been excellent – they really are experts in their field, both individually and as a whole team,” Nikesh agrees. “I joined them for an orientation day in January, and knew I was making the right decision. This is a start-up business and I have been given the confidence to build something successful. The training I received before we opened our doors for business, along with the support I’ve received since opening, has been absolutely instrumental to how my business has been established.”
Life begins at 40!
Two months after turning 40, Nikesh opened Right at Home Barnet and Edgware. “The business is what I hoped for. I have the work-life balance I needed, in order to be able to engage with my three kids. Before I opened my business, I was commuting into the City up to two hours a day, so missed out when they were smaller,” Nikesh enthuses. “Added to this, Kala and I feel blessed to be in a position to provide quality home care in the community where I grew up. When you’re dealing with people, quality is paramount! People deserve the right to high-quality, dignified care and these are people I have been around my whole life.”
This ethos is shared with Right at Home, who were awarded Management Franchise of the Year, 2017, based on the anonymous ratings of their franchise network. “We aim to deliver the same standard of care we would expect to receive ourselves, or for a loved one,” Nikesh affirms.
One year on…
Nikesh has enjoyed a good first year. “There have been challenges, as there are with any new business,” he says. “But being able to work in the care industry is rewarding. I have a real sense we are making a difference to someone’s life by what we offer through Right at Home, because care is at the heart of who we are. We provide reassurance and support to our clients, and their families. But also to our carers. Our carers received a survey recently, and their feedback demonstrated they felt valued and supported. When they enjoy working for Right at Home, our Clients see this too. Fundamentally, we have built a business which revolves around care in all directions.”
The standard Nikesh has built in his Right at Home business speaks for itself in how Clients respond. “Our Clients really value what we offer,” he explains. “Currently, we are rated very highly on the homecare.co.uk website, which correlates with the largely feedback we receive directly.”
But, Nikesh refuses to become complacent after a good first year, “There’s more we can do – and so much more I want to accomplish. In early June, we were involved in the Alzheimer’s’ Show in London, held in association with the Alzheimer’s Society. This is something we can become more involved with, to offer support and help to families of Alzheimer’s patients, as we become more established.”
But the reason behind why Nikesh does what he does? #WhyICare comes down to one thing: “I love hearing about people’s life journey and the older generation have so much more life experience to share! There is no better feeling in the world than making someone’s day.”
To find out more about the industry-recognised quality of the care, as we are the most highly-rated homecare agency on the UK’s leading review site, www.homecare.co.uk, call Kate Dilworth on 0151 3050755 or email her: email@example.com
Hi, my name is Kev Popat and I am the managing director of Right at Home Solent. I have set up the business with the backing and partnership of my lovely and supportive wife, Amy Patel Popat.
“Imagining my gran receiving care from someone who has no interest in her is the reason I’m here today.”
The first thing you notice when you meet Kev is that he is just an incredibly nice guy; the sort of person the people of Solent are likely to be comfortable trusting to manage their relative’s care.
The second thing you find out is that he might just be the man who has it all. Very happy childhood, great upbringing, devoted to his family, too good looking by half, a business-savvy grafter, but also a qualified chartered accountant who spent six years with a Big Four firm. But don’t write him off just yet….
Hi Kev. So where does this story begin?
I’m fortunate to have been brought up in a joint family home, so spent most of my early years with my grandparents whilst my parents were working hard to secure a future for my brother and myself. I have so many fond memories of these initial years (mostly drinking tea and eating biscuits!). Imagining my gran receiving care from someone who has no interest in her is the reason I’m here today.
Tell us a bit about your career background?
Well, it kind of mirrors my dad’s. He had a great job at the bank but ultimately decided that he wanted to be self-employed. He looked around for the right path and ended up buying a newsagents. That was great for us as kids as we all got to work there. We certainly learned all about hard work and long hours, but it also showed us how it could pay off.
When I finished school, I went to university and later qualified as a chartered accountant. That was certainly hard work, but after six years I needed a change. I took a break, went travelling and to be fair, had a great time. My plan was to come back and give the corporate world another chance, hoping that I could find a great mentor to inspire me.
Well I did, and spent four years working with some great people in a commercial finance role but, somewhat inevitably, the lure of having my own business became too strong to ignore.
What was the turning point?
My wife Amy comes from a family of entrepreneurs who have a lot of businesses including some franchises. We both had great jobs, but believed we had gained enough experience to start a successful venture of our own.
What options did you consider?
Lots! As I said, we were familiar with franchising, so we looked at recruitment, drainage companies, soft play centres…lots of different things, but nothing that really grabbed us. A family member suggested the care industry to us, so we began researching it thoroughly.
Going through the various websites and articles, I remembered how upset my family were at the poor care my granddad received when he had a stroke when I was younger. Amy and I began to feel that this was something that we could perhaps do ourselves – provide a great service that we would be happy to offer our own families.
How did that work out?
Well, to be honest, the unbelievable amount of industry regulations alone made us realise that we would need a lot of help if we were to provide the incredible service that we wanted to. Don’t get me wrong, the regulations are vital, but compliance is a huge task and we weren’t getting into this to cut corners.
So back to look at franchising again?
Exactly. We called around a lot of companies and couldn’t believe how much they all sounded the same! Initially they all talked how much they cared, yet it became immediately clear that between the 15 minute visits, multiple ‘add-on’ services and obsession with fast growth, they weren’t actually focused on quality of care at all – just growth for the company. We were actually really shocked at how salesy some of them were and it just put us right off.
You obviously didn’t give up though?
No. Thankfully we didn’t. It was on a visit to the National Franchise Exhibition, which is supported by the British Franchise Association, that we found Right at Home. We introduced ourselves to Ken Deary (Right at Home UK managing director and owner) on the stand who we had a lovely but very brief chat with, as he said if we really wanted to know what it was all about, we should speak to one of his franchise owners. There were two there at the time; Andrew Davis from Bournemouth and Joe Guishard from Cardiff.
We ended up spending a lot of time with Andrew who was incredibly honest about his own experience with Right at Home, what he thought it would take to be successful and also asked us some great questions around not just our own experience, but our motives for wanting to get involved in the sector.
So Right at Home was more along the lines of what you were looking for?
They were exactly what we were looking for. That day really changed everything and got us excited about the idea again. We arranged to attend a Discovery Day at the head office in Preston where we got to meet the whole support team and spend a lot of time with Ken.
We had obviously gone in there well prepared, so we knew he was very experienced and well respected in franchising, but he still really impressed us. The entire ethos of the company matched ours; believing that quality of care came first every time. The real difference was everything Ken told us and showed us about Right at Home clearly demonstrated that they weren’t just paying lip service – striving for excellence was non-negotiable in his mind and they weren’t interested in giving a franchise to anyone who wasn’t on exactly the same page.
Again, in contrast to most of the other operators we spoke to, Ken really pushed back at us about our motives and dedication to get it right and put the work in.
Presumably they really put you through your paces during the recruitment process?
Oh yes. They certainly did. Again though, it just proved to us that they weren’t in this to simply sell franchises and become the biggest brand out there – Ken and the team are all about being the best. That’s precisely what Amy and I want Right at Home Solent to be too.
So when did you officially start?
We opened in June 2015 and completed the regulation process by the middle of July. The training from Right at Home was predictably thorough, but the pace was just right for us, the group was small and it was really well structured to allow us to focus on the areas we needed most support in.
Our confidence grew every day and as we began to meet more and more of the other franchise owners in the network, we felt part of something very strong and very special. There is so much to learn and so many regulations to comply with that I simply don’t see how someone could do this successfully on their own.
Right at Home is a real industry leader and they work around the clock to make sure they are not just on top of changes in the industry, but also shaping them. With Ken and his team behind us, our team can concentrate on what we are here to do – provide a phenomenal service to our clients, one our families can be proud of, and to run the most professional business we can.
“There is no better feeling in the world than making someone’s day; the team we are putting together will be making people’s days, every single day.”
After a few months of trading, how are you finding running your franchise office?
We have been operating for 6 months now and have built a fantastic reputation for quality and great service in the Derby region. We are therefore finding each day a new challenge as our word of mouth marketing exposes us to new clients with differing needs and requirements.
The key to a successful office is getting the right people on your team; a committed and experienced registered manager with dedicated and caring home care assistants are essential. From this point, the office doesn’t need managing, it needs ‘leading’. With the Right at Home systems and policies in place, the office operations run themselves. This leaves time to ensure we are delivering quality at all times and to look for new business opportunities and growth.
There are still some points about running the office that no franchisee will look forward to, such as payroll. I like to remind myself though that for every pound spent on carers, the actual revenue coming in is greater than this. With no stock holding, limited overheads and the fact we have normally collected client invoices before we complete payroll, even paying your employees can be fulfilling!
How does the actual experience compare to your earlier expectations?
The importance of quality and the difference it can make to a person’s life is far more important than I had previously expected. With my corporate and operational experience behind me I had no concerns about being able to run any business. My concern about the care sector was my lack of knowledge and slight fear about providing care myself. From a health and social care knowledge perspective and thanks to the training provided by the franchisor I have quickly removed any concerns I had about lack of care experience. I am now very comfortable discussing and even leading conversations with seasoned professionals on personalisation, dignity, choice, respect, independence etc. It is surprising how much I have learnt in a short period of time.
The concern about actually providing care myself was also quickly removed. The franchisor training provides all the knowledge you need but it is nothing compared to actually doing it for the first time. Whilst it is not common practice to schedule myself onto care calls, if we pick up a new client or if a customer requires additional support I have been known to go and help. If you don’t have a caring nature then you shouldn’t consider working within the care sector; if you do have a caring nature then actually providing the hands-on care will come easy to you.
After completing your training, what kind of support have you received from your franchisor? Has it proved worthwhile?
It is fair to say that we wouldn’t have been able to get through the initial CQC inspection if it wasn’t for the franchisor team. As our business has grown rapidly we also relied on the franchisor’s team to help us put procedures and policies in place to cope with our growth.
In addition to the regular webinars, weekly performance calls and conferences, I have relied on the franchisor’s office to be at the other end of the phone whenever I need them. I have often wondered how I would have got through some situations if I had been an independent start-up operator and didn’t have the franchisor supporting me. This support and guidance is what I paid the franchise fee for and is worth every penny.
I have worked closely with the National Business Development team exploring networking opportunities and benchmarking my office against the top performers in the network. As a competitive individual I find it extremely motivating to see how well the other offices are performing and to set myself targets to beat them. If I was a stand-alone independent then I don’t think I would have pushed my business to the level it is now without being able to see other offices success.
Do you feel you have sufficient control over the way you run your office?
The franchisor has given me full and complete control over the way I run the office. Ken and the team are tuned in to the fact that I am an entrepreneur and do not want to be told how to do everything. If I did want this, I would get a job!
In a relatively short period of time, I have taken Right at Home Derby into new business opportunities and directions that had not been previously explored by Right at Home. From the outset the franchisor has asked challenging questions to ensure that we will be able to deliver quality and be profitable in these new ventures, but at the same time they have been encouraging and supportive as we looked for new ways to grow our business.
What ideas have you been able to introduce?
Right at Home Derby was initially set up to look after the older adult (post-65) demographic. Early on though we discovered opportunities with younger adults with learning difficulties and challenging behaviour. This is a completely separate market and service offering than the older adults. With the help and support of the franchisor, we have built a strong market position and reputation for providing outcome driven support plans to help young adults achieve their independence within the community. As well as the fulfilment of helping a young adult become independent and, with support, live on their own with a life of their choosing, the age profile of this sector and therefore the longevity of the contract make a compelling business case. A large percentage of our business is now working with younger adults.
What has been the most satisfying aspect of the business so far?
There are several most satisfying aspects for different reasons; signing the first client, achieving single month profitability in our 3rd month of trading, providing employment in the local area etc. The most satisfying though has to be the difference that we can make to our customers lives. The video on our website made by our first customer clearly demonstrates this difference. For the right reasons, this customer is now independent and has regained her confidence after a stroke to the extent that she is no longer reliant on support. There cannot be anything more satisfying than that.
What have been the biggest challenges?
There are administration and business set-up challenges that every business faces. The biggest unique challenge to our business though is matching the right carer to the customer. Whilst training, knowledge and experience are all vital elements of providing quality care, finding carers with the right personality and communication skills to match our customers is essential.
Our care assistants do more than provide personal care, medication, meal preparation etc; quite often they are the only people that our customer may see all day. Spending quality time in a companionship manner is the most important factor that truly makes a difference to people’s lives.
At Right at Home Derby, we use psychometric testing, employee profiling, carer skill matching software to help match carers to clients. Ultimately though, it is our free of charge introduction to their proposed carer prior to commencing support and the guarantee of continuity of carer that makes such a difference to the individual.
Can you describe your typical working day?
As most business owners know, there is no such thing as a typical day! Each day of the week has a different routine. Recruitment, client acquisition, rotas and scheduling, invoicing, payroll, assessments, training all need to be accomplished on a weekly basis.
A day may consist of:
Either go to the gym on the way to the office or cycle in for around 830am. Shower and change before a chat with the registered manager about what the objectives and priorities are for that day. If we are not careful though, our discussion on what we can do to help our clients further would last till lunchtime.
Our discussion is normally curtailed though by a new enquiry or an assessment for a new client. The registered manager is the backbone of the business handling the majority of the administration functions, new client assessments and care planning. This allows me to spend time during the day on networking, client acquisition, marketing and business development.
Between 10am and 4pm I will have meetings with networking groups, potential referral sources, local authorities and social workers. My roles as a Dignity Champion, Dementia Friend Champion and management committee member for Derby Choice allow me to work within the community to help improve the lives of people in need. I will probably spend at least an hour a day representing one of these organisations.
Around 4pm we will convene back at the office to discuss successes and opportunities. Schedules are double-checked to ensure that carers will be providing support through the evening and the following day. I will typically leave the office around 6pm to provide taxi driver services to one of my own children.
Whilst there is no such thing as a 9-5 job for a business owner as I will often clear emails, write blogs, do social media etc. into the evening, the work/life balance and overall hours spent are significantly more controlled than the 80-90 hours I was doing in the corporate world. I have to say, the 10-15 minute commute into the office is a dream!
Andrew Davis was a Commissioned Officer with the British Army before taking up his franchise. The 38-year-old had seen active service in the Balkans and Iraq before taking a mentoring role helping other officers prepare themselves for commanding their troops on operations.
Now he owns a business providing top quality home care services for elderly people and adults with physical disabilities in Bournemouth. So what factors led him from the military to the care sector? The growth potential in the UK market and the operational support provided by Right at Home proved to be the key.
“It’s quite a departure from my previous life, certainly!” says Andrew. “I chose franchising because the notion of being ‘the master of my own destiny’ is really very important to me. Secondly, I wanted to have that relationship and guidance –a road map to success if you like.
“I was attracted to care because whilst I can see that financially I can control my own growth and income, I also wanted to do something that made me feel good about the value I was adding to the lives of others. As I become successful, my staff will see the benefits, but most importantly the people that we provide care and support to will have a better quality of life. That feels really great.”
The care sector is a competitive market - so why choose Right at Home?
“I did lots of research, speaking to several franchisors in the sector and plenty of franchisees as well. I was impressed with the passion and commitment shown by the Right At Home team, right from the word go.
“The support and guidance that they showed to me was reflected in what their franchisees said as well. Lots of organisations say that their support is really good, but with Right at Home, their franchisees said the same thing.
“The training that I have had from the RAH team has been so valuable – I can’t speak highly enough about it. It can all seem a bit overwhelming at the start, but I couldn’t have asked for more help and not once did I think I was being a nuisance. It is so refreshing to deal with a company that does exactly what it says it will do.
“Having no specific sector experience, it was a relief to see the scope of experience within the team as well. Since the initial training, there is a steady stream of contact between us – and that is helping me to be ready for the big day when I open the doors to the big wide world.”
Right at Home Mid Hampshire
I’d had my own furniture design and manufacturing business for 25 years when one of my parents acquired dementia. As the condition developed I was required to take Power of Attorney and became responsible for their health and well-being.
After three years in which I learned a lot about care and the impact that it had on families, I decided that I would, if possible, try and find a way into the sector and start a business. I thought, there has to be a better way than what I have seen.
It was thanks to a happy set of coincidences that about a year after my parent died I met another Right at Home franchisee at a family wedding. When he started speaking about what he did, I realised within a few minutes of talking to him that this was the route I wanted to go down.
Once I knew that Right at Home were genuinely an organisation with absolute integrity, and once I had completed the due diligence process and demonstrated to Right at Home that I also shared their values about the way care should be delivered, we signed contracts and I undertook the first stage of training. With their support I then went through the process of finding a suitable office, recruiting a Registered Manager to oversee the care side of the business and setting up the office for a pre-start inspection from the CQC.
For me, the point of buying a franchise was that it was my fastest way to acquire the necessary knowledge of the care sector – and I appreciated that I would also save a lot of time and money in the process. Care is one of the most highly regulated industries in the country; it would have taken five years or more of self-education and expenditure to reach the same point that I did in after a year with Right at Home.
We moved into our office in September 2014, had our initial CQC inspection in late October and signed up our first client in the December. It is an intense working environment to begin with – you and your Registered Manager in a small office, covering every aspect of the business between you. I can’t underline enough the importance of finding the right manager to guide you through the start-up.
In terms of the challenges we’ve faced – in the early days it was understanding that you are always climbing two ladders, looking for staff and for clients, and there is invariably a bottleneck with one or the other. You must have sufficient staff or you risk over-stretching and then losing clients and staff. You must also develop sufficient clients, because your staff all have a living to earn.
Managing that on top of the personal pressures of getting a business off the ground is tough. There are a lot of plates to keep spinning and you need to keep an eye on the budgets and not get carried away with spending. You need to have the confidence and people skills to make cold calls. It takes a long time to start to understand how the local networks operate, but you have to jump right in and get to know people. Volunteering was a very good starting point in the early days.
We have now been operating for just over two years and we are currently averaging 850 hours of care a week, with 47 clients and 38 staff.
In the first year we made the expected loss; in the second year we made a significant profit. In the third year, I propose to pay myself a proper wage instead of just enough to live on. We are growing a great team of genuinely caring people and we’ve recently had a fantastic CQC inspection that everyone was incredibly proud of. Please see http://www.cqc.org.uk/sites/default/files/new_reports/INS2-2473806779.pdf
We’ve put a huge amount of work into ensuring that it’s a welcoming, safe and secure place of work and there is now a feeling that the people working in the company have become a cohesive unit with some real bonds and friendships developing.
We’re really trying to get it right, for the clients and the care staff, and it’s great to see that that’s working; as we now have an over 85% staff retention rate.
Like any business, it’s a steep learning curve, but we are now seen locally, correctly, as a premium care provider; we’re able to set our billing rates accordingly and, importantly, we can reinvest in our staff so we can keep growing.
My advice to anyone considering coming into the quality care sector would be – make sure that you absolutely mean it. If you don’t have the passion for helping people, or if you suspect your heart lies elsewhere, you will only ever be just another care company.
But if you’ve got the drive to really make a difference and the determination to reconcile that with building a business then there is no better vehicle than Right at Home for realising your ambitions.
We have a book full of compliments about our care services with wonderful letters of gratitude, and it is truly amazing to see the impact that our business can have, be it supporting families in end of life situations, or helping clients to improve their quality of life and physical well-being.
It was definitely the best decision for me. Having started this new business in my 50’s it has given me a new lease of life – I can honestly say there is nothing else I would rather be doing.
When you know you can do better: Do it!
Ex-police officer, Joe Guishard, was used to engaging with his local community. But watching his beloved grandmother suffering with Vascular Dementia, stirred something in him to offer more to the community. Right at Home provided him with a way to do this.
When Police Officer, Joe Guishard heard the devastating news, it was just one more ‘thing’ in a series of events leading him to change career. His beloved grandmother, Geraldine Deere, had been diagnosed with dementia. “She was going through a really rough time,” Joe reflects. “But it happened so rapidly. Within 12 months of being diagnosed with the disease, she passed away.”
Now the proud owner of Right at Home Cardiff, Joe has found a way to act on a personal vow, made when he reflected back on the poor care Geraldine had received. “My Grandmother had homecare assigned to her, with a different company. The service she’d received was horrendous. Having been allocated just 15-minute calls a day, half the time carers wouldn’t turn up, or if they did, they were up to four hours late. This wouldn’t have helped, as she struggled with Dementia.
“Looking back, I knew this wasn’t how care should be delivered. I vowed to find a way to help other families avoid such a traumatic experience. But at the time, we had never used homecare before, so hadn’t known what to expect.”
From the Police to care
Joe had been serving within his local constabulary for around six years. The gritty constable had his mind set on promotion, when a blow to his plans marked the beginning of his career change. “Having been in the force for a while, I was keen to become a sergeant. I always like to better myself. But due to budget cuts, we were told there would be no opportunity for promotion, for at least five years.
“I told a close friend, who served with me in the force, ‘I could be running my own established, successful business within five years! So, why should I wait around for the chance at promotion?’ They challenged me to stop talking about it, and to just do it.”
It seemed like this challenge was just what Joe needed, “I was later reading one of the national papers. A feature about Andree Kerr, the owner of Right at Home Wimbledon, caught my attention. She had transitioned from HR management, to running her own homecare business, and after a strong start, had no regrets.”
Identifying where his passion truly lay
Serving with the police had obviously involved a lot of community engagement. For Joe, there were areas of his job he was more passionate about than others, “As I was considering a career in care, it soon became clear much of what I found most satisfying could cross over. The aspect of offering direct support to the community – when I knew I was really making a difference to someone.”
However, it was after meeting Ken Deary, Managing Director of Right at Home UK, and hearing his passion for driving up standards of homecare, that Joe realised this was the change of direction he was looking for. “As he spoke,” explains Joe, “he was inspirational. He spoke about the collective drive to offer exceptional quality. After what my Grandmother had experienced, this was exactly what I was looking to achieve.”
Putting words into action
After retiring from duty, Joe opened Right at Home Cardiff on 1st October, 2012. His dream to offer exceptional quality care was finally being realised. Six years later, and Joe has grown his business to become one of the largest in the Right at Home network, holding a number of network and industry awards.
“Success is 100% down to the structured business model Right at Home gives,” he says. “I came into it with no business experience. So having access to a model with proven results, which was easy to follow, definitely allowed me to build the business I’d hoped for.”
Joe also puts his success down to the team he has working around him, “You’re dealing with challenging day-to-day situations, which can escalate quickly: from a client’s health suddenly deteriorating, to family members having unrealistic expectations, when they misunderstand the carer’s role. There’s also the psychological impact on the CareGivers themselves. They are closer to what is happening, so what they see affects them deeply; especially those delivering in end-of-life care. It is important my team know we are here to support them, as they support our clients. We really are an extended family, so how you treat people is important. I never want to lose this within our business.”
As a person, Joe is strongly driven by goals. “When I reach one, I push the next back further. This way, we continue to exceed our own preconceived barriers, and every one of us thrives. We compete against what we accomplished the previous year, growing our business to the next level. I want us to offer the best, and most exceptional homecare service we can. I don’t believe we have reached this point yet. We all want to push for more.”
The Right at Home way to success
Joe has found Right at Home to be exactly what he needs. “It doesn’t matter if you’re newly opened or not, the National Office support is second-to-none,” he explains. “As a care business, they have a wealth of knowledge and expertise. Tapping into this has been immensely beneficial at each stage of my business development. I have absolutely no doubt, I would not have achieved this level of success without their infrastructure and tools.
“I wake up each morning knowing I am making a difference every day. This is something I believe I was born to do. This is the best level of job satisfaction I could ever hope for.”
To find out more about what it takes to join the Right at Home franchise network, please call Kate Dilworth on 0151 3050755 or email her: firstname.lastname@example.org
David Meanwell realised there was a serious gap in his local community which, if filled, would benefit his own family in years to come. Wanting to make a difference, he set about opening a new Right at Home business.
David Meanwell was ready to do something more with his life. 2016 was drawing to a close, and he felt underwhelmed with how his career was looking. David wanted to believe he could have a lasting, positive impact on people he encountered; whilst building an important support system his family would be empowered by in the future.
At work, David was organised, professional and incredibly successful; but he ‘only’ worked in car rental, “I was involved in an industry which wasn’t very exciting. Even though I’d become a regional director, I didn’t have any real sense of job satisfaction. And it had been fun to start off with, travelling the UK and into Europe. But I wasn’t having any positive or lasting impact on anyone. I had always wanted to run my own business. By the time I reached directorship, I was ready to do my own thing.”
The father of three was ready to use his skills more profoundly, but he was cautious not to add any undue pressure on his family. “I knew I didn’t have the fortitude to take the risk alone. I spoke with a guy used to work with me in car rentals – he’d opened a Right at Home franchise a few years previously. As he talked so passionately about his business, I could see he was incredibly satisfied in a way I wasn’t. I knew franchising with Right at Home was the push I needed to take a leap of faith; using their support as security.”
Compelled by a collective desire to offer exceptional homecare, each local Right at Home office is determined to deliver care which enables their Clients to enjoy living independently, in their own home. In speaking with Ken Deary, CEO of Right at Home UK, everything fell into place for David. “Right at Home oozed quality. Everything Ken and his team spoke about, especially with regard to the future of Right at Home, resonated with what I was looking for. They aspire to be at the forefront of quality care, as a premium homecare brand.
“The fact Right at Home is still relatively young in the UK,” David continues, “was a contributing factor for me. I could choose where to establish my business, which was important to me, as I want to be nearer home, with my wife and children.”
David’s strong inclination to work in the care sector, despite not having had any professional experience, was driven by his family’s personal experience. “I identified that we have a gap in the care provided locally. I want to plug the gap, while I can, before it impacts on my family.”
For David’s 10-year-old daughter, Ella, is a special influence on what he is building. “Ella has Downs Syndrome,” he explains. “My wife Megan does an amazing job in caring for her, and I support as much as I can. So, whilst Ella currently doesn’t receive any care, I know a day will come when she will want to live more independently. I hear a lot of nightmare stories for young adults beyond 18. So, I want to be the change in our community.
“This is one of the attractions of Right at Home for me, they don’t just offer care to the over-65s, but to all adults who require a little extra support at home. My aim is for my Right at Home business to offer care to those who need it most, including those young adults with Downs who want to live independently. We already have a couple of Clients on the autistic spectrum, who I am honoured to be supporting. I want to enable more Clients to feel confident to live independently in their own homes.”
The care industry is huge, and constantly growing. Right at Home franchisees can build a successful business, tapping into a compassionate industry, to support local people who either need homecare, or by creating jobs. “The skills I have learned over the last 15 years, I have been able to bring to a different kind of table,” David says, “combining them with my compassionate side. I wanted to deliver a service which actually makes a difference to people, personally. Right at Home has a profound impact on our Clients, every day,”
Having only opened his business a year ago, David is already achieving his personal desire to make a positive impact on his community, one Client at a time. But always at the back of his mind is the foundation underpinning his decision: “I am living this journey now, so I can be in a position to help my daughter, and others like her, in the future.”
If you are interested in discovering how you can make a difference in people’s lives, as part of the Right at Home franchise network, call Kate Dilworth on 0151 3050755 or email her: email@example.com
Since opening Right at Home Harrow, in 2014, Ruth has built a successful business in the heart of her local community. In May 2018 her dedication and impressive growth was recognised at the EWIF national franchising awards, where Ruth was a finalist in the coveted Woman Franchisee of the Year category.
With her growing care team, Ruth’s business has been having a positive impact on her Clients, their family and friends, as well as the wider community. Ruth explains, “I wanted a business opportunity which would allow me to be successful and I really wanted to be able to provide high quality care. This is what drew me to Right at Home initially; they work to a very high standard.”
Right at Home is a Homecare Management franchise which encourages its network of owners to develop their business in their own way; and is ideally suited to someone who wants to make a real difference in the lives of the people who use their services.
The trust of her clients
Operating a customer-focused business, Ruth ensures her growing team of carers also work from the same ethos: to treat Clients as if they were family. “I previously worked in schools, before moving into the care industry,” Ruth explains. “I find the emphasis on keeping Clients at the centre of what we offer is not dissimilar to keeping children central to the education process.”
Last year, Ruth extended her services to offer live-in care. “We found there were Clients who wanted to stay at home, but needed a little extra support, especially at night. So we offer this exceptional care service to ensure our Clients can enjoy the comfort of their own home for as long as possible. Some of my Clients who use live-in originally came to us with small needs, but came back for higher-level support that they trust us to provide.
As a result of the standard Ruth expects from her team, her office provides more live-in care than any other office within the Right at Home network tapping into the huge demand for a viable alternative to residential care.
The trust of her community
Right at Home has a reputation for delivering top-level care. Through her local community connections, Ruth has established a reputation for excellence, and often receives referrals through places of worship. The family and friends who care about her potential Clients, have heard about the standard of care Right at Home offers. This reputation not only benefits Ruth’s business, but has worked in favour of new franchisees moving into Adjacent territories.
“I’ve been able to pass on Clients to the neighbouring Right at Home office, as well. The trust people have in the Right at Home services are reflected in the opportunities we receive.”
The trust of the generations
But Ruth hasn’t finished, she has more services to develop, which will further improve her Clients’ quality of life.
Before opening Right at Home Harrow, Ruth was an Assistant Head and a Biology teacher.
“I originally chose to work in education because it has the power to transform peoples’ lives,” she says. “My aim now is to improve life for adults in their ‘sunset days’, in their own homes, by providing the highest quality of care and assistance; to go the extra mile, with new initiatives.
“My dad was in a care home,” Ruth says, “and he absolutely loved it when children were brought into see the residents. Having seen first-hand the positive impact inter-generational interactions can have on the elderly population, I want to host workshops with both elderly Clients, and young children attending. I think this would be a wonderful opportunity both for my business, and for the people who connect with one another across the generations.”
Fully supportive of her idea, Right at Home are encouraging Ruth to pursue this addition to her business. “Head Office put me in touch with an organisation who run workshops for children, who are interested in partnering with us for this project. We would offer intergenerational workshops, like crafts, which clients, local small children and the wider community can attend.”
Research has shown encouraging the development of relationships between the generations has a positive impact on the well-being of both, reducing anxiety, loneliness and depression in older people.
“Last year, was a bit of a trial-run; we ran a “Singing for the Brain” workshop with a professional singer who works with Alzheimer’s patients. We invited the local community to join our Clients, their friends and family, and had a great time singing together. We were able to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society at the same time, which is important to me, as some of my Clients suffer with dementia.”
Then in early May, Ruth ran her first inter-generational workshop, “We had a very good start for our first event, so I am really pleased,” Ruth exclaims. “We had one Client in particular who attracted the attention of the children easily. He is an excellent artist who loves to draw portraits, so he spent time drawing each of the children and they absolutely loved him.”
It is this engagement which Ruth knows will be hugely beneficial for both the children and her Clients. “The workshops allowed the generations to interact together, creating a positive environment for our Clients as we find ways to enrich their lives. We want to give them something to look forward to; this will allow them to leave the house and mix with other people in the community, which is important for their emotional and mental wellbeing.”
By mixing the two worlds she knows and loves, Ruth hopes to continue to transform people’s lives, as well as developing the excellent range of care services she provides, whilst making a real difference to the people in her community.
It’s 10 weeks into lockdown and Right at Home Maidenhead owner Scott MacRae is in a good mood and feeling pretty optimistic for the future – this is obviously what it’s like when you’ve picked your perfect franchise...
Far from being sheltered from the effects of COVID19, Right at Home franchisees and their teams have arguably been on the frontlines, delivering essential homecare services to vulnerable adults and older people. Scott’s current optimism steams from a belief that we are starting to come out the other side of it now, and recognition of how well the franchise has come together, to continue providing the best home care to all its clients.
Scott’s journey into franchising is not an unfamiliar story. He had enjoyed a successful career as Sales Director for an electronics firm, but always had a feeling that he could, and should, be doing something much more personally fulfilling and of value to others. Around his 50th birthday, Scott was given the chance to step down from his role and take a generous package – it seemed like the perfect time, and opportunity, to broaden his horizons and make a meaningful change.
All the available employment roles just felt like he’d be doing more of the same, but in a different office with new people. Nothing really jumped out. Could he perhaps start a business up himself – he had money he could invest?
Aware of his skills, but also aware there were many things he didn’t know about actually running a business, franchising looked like a very promising option. With the best part of 1,000 franchise opportunities in the UK alone, finding the right one felt like a mountainous task at first. However, determined to stick to the plan of being able to make a positive difference by doing something that offered more than just financial reward, Scott soon found himself evaluating the franchise brands operating in the domiciliary care sector.
Right at Home UK was not yet an established brand, but it was certainly making waves as the one to watch. While other brands promised the chance to be part of the biggest or fastest growing franchise network, Right at Home UK promised the chance to join the best. When Scott met with franchisor Ken Deary, he could tell straight away that this wasn’t an empty promise or clever marketing - this was the driving ethos behind the brand: the right people, doing the right things, for the right reasons.
Scott found the interview and application process fairly straight forward but was surprised at the lack of ‘hard sell’. It soon became clear that rather than being sold, Right at Home franchises were awarded to the best people, rather than the first people to apply who had the funding. This gave Scott a lot of confidence that, if he was successful in joining, he would be amongst a reassuringly high calibre group of people with the same commitment and ethics. Needless to say, Scott was successful and eight years ago became the proud owner of Right at Home Maidenhead – then the 13th office in the UK network.
Today, Right at Home is one of the most highly regarded, rated and decorated home care operators in the country, with more than 50 local franchisee owned offices. It remains family owned and prides itself on the values that differentiate it from others in the sector.
What do you remember being the most challenging aspect of getting Right at Home Maidenhead up and running?
“So much of it is really quite exciting – finding an office, working on the marketing plan and starting to recruit. However, recruiting your Registered Care Manager is the hardest part (this is a legal requirement for every home care provider). You’re looking for a partner really, someone who is going to really step up and bring home care knowledge and experience to your business. Their salary is actually your biggest cost at that stage, so you are putting a lot of faith in them being the right person to help you manage and lead a team of carers. You learn so much about the care side during initial training from the national office, but you are still relying heavily on the Registered Manager while you find your feet.”
How did it feel to become an employer and leader?
“I’d managed people before, but they weren’t my employees as such. It’s a big responsibility, but you have the chance to build up a great team from scratch and actually help them grow and develop in their own careers – it’s much more than just filling vacancies. You’re looking for people who have the right blend of being great at caring, but also diligent and who work well with others. Whether it’s office staff or the carers themselves, you want everyone to be there for the right reasons and be united in the goal of really helping local people live more comfortable independent lives at home.”
Presumably nothing could have prepared you or your team for what we’re going through right now with COVID19 and the lockdown restrictions?
“Well I certainly can’t pretend I saw it coming, I don’t think anyone did. What I can say, is that I am very glad to be part of this franchise network, rather than an independent. I’m sure our national office team was as caught off guard as everyone else, but they jumped into action impressively quickly. To begin with, and this really highlights the difference between being a franchisee verses being on your own, they picked up the phone to everyone, asked how we were, and assured us that there was a plan, and that they were going to support and guide us every step of the way, and that we would get through it.
The biggest issue in terms of being able to help our carers get out to support our clients was lack of PPE. There was plenty of low quality stuff available if you were prepared to pay astronomical prices and join a very long queue for delivery, but to their eternal credit National Office stepped in and secured a very large order of quality supplies (at their own cost) and distributed it out to the entire franchise network. This meant that both carers and clients could be confident they were taking all the right steps to keep safe from spreading or catching the infection.
Of course, even with the PPE, it was far from business as usual. The information coming from Public Health England was changing constantly and it would have been a full-time job just to try and keep up with it, but Ken and Lucy (Ken Deary CEO and Lucy Campbell COO) made sure we were updated around the clock with what we should and shouldn’t be doing. Then there were all the financial aspects – the available grants, small business relief, furloughing, bounce back loans. Honestly, if I was doing this on my own, I would have easily missed a lot of this really important stuff. Having that support from the franchisor, meant we were free to focus offering top quality care and going above and beyond to make sure our clients and Caregivers were being looked after safely.
Also, it might not seem like a big thing, but all the support was delivered in a deliberately calm and reassuring tone. The team seemed very aware of how stressful the whole situation could be, regardless of how experienced the franchisees might have been, so the mental wellbeing of franchisees was paramount and crucial in keeping everyone together and feeling positive. Ken said right at the beginning that he believed that the network would come out of it stronger than it went into it. That’s a brave statement, but it gave everyone across the organisation confidence; and it looks like he’s going to be proved right.”
With a large network it must be quite an effort for any franchisor to communicate effectively with their franchisees – what procedures do Right at Home UK have in place?
“This is an area where I think Right at Home really stands out. Clear, regular communication is a very big thing across the board, so there’s no ‘them and us’ – it’s one big team with shared goals and purpose, albeit made up of individual business owners. We have a Franchise Advisory Council set up which is there to act as a kind of go-between if need. I’ve actually just taken on the role of Chairing it this year, which I took as a rather flattering vote of confidence from my peers! I’m sure in some franchise networks this would be a full time peace keeping job, but normally for us it’s a two hour call every couple of months where ideas are shared and my fellow council members and I actually get to help shape the direction of the business and feedback to the rest of the network. As I said before, Ken and Lucy are very approachable and they really listen, so it’s very functional and friendly, however if a franchisee wanted to raise a concern anonymously for example then they have this platform to be heard. The other great benefit of being in a franchise network without hundreds of other franchisees, is that you are so much more than just a number and your opinions really matter – I think it gives the support we pay for so much more value than perhaps it would elsewhere.”
What else makes Right at Home such a great franchise opportunity?
“Our territories are much larger than with other home care brands, so there is plenty of room to grow without having to buy additional territories – although quite a few of our franchisees have, so there really is no limit to where your ambition can take you.
As a Right at Home franchisee you have the opportunity to build a very successful business that can bring you a secure financial future, but it’s not done by cutting corners – it’s done by doing everything properly.
Right across the board, there’s not a single person simply paying lip service to the notion of quality - Right at Home means quality in terms of the way the franchisees are recruited and supported, quality in terms of how the franchisees support their staff and carers, and quality in terms of the care given to the clients, which is the foundation of the whole business.
We have a one-hour visit minimum policy so that carers can build relationships with their clients, get to know them and really help improve their lives. Especially now, clients can be particularly lonely, and they deserve to be cared about and given hope. I don’t think any other company really competes with us when it comes to CQC or homecare.co.uk ratings and our client testimonials are genuinely heart-warming.”
Talking of hope, how are you feeling about the future and what would you say to someone wanting to become a Right at Home franchisee?
I’m feeling very positive. Ken said we’d come out of this stronger and in better shape than before, and my business is stronger and I’ve actually lost quite a lot of weight, so he was right on both counts!
In many ways I wish I’d done this 20 years ago, but sometimes it just takes until the time is right for you. Some people embrace the notion of having their own business, some people need a little push. The thing about care is that it’s a lot of hard work to get everything right, even when you’re part of a franchise. The sheer volume of policies, procedures, insurances, legal aspects and training required is enormous. I think a lot of people get involved because they hear it can be profitable and it’s a growing market so they think it’s worth a shot – well it’s not the sort of thing you can take chances on, it’s people’s lives.
Even with the Right at Home ‘recipe’, and the comprehensive help and support you get from National Office, it’s still a good three years before you have the recipe spot on for you and your business. That means anyone wanting to join the network needs to be resilient, driven, committed and in it for more than just financial opportunity.
I still get involved with the marketing, recruitment and inductions, overseeing payroll and making sure everyone gets paid, plus I’m out at BNI breakfast meetings every week to help build my introducer network. I’d say it’s a busy leadership role now, but you’ve got to be the sort of person who will roll their sleeves up at the drop of a hat – there’s a good chance you might find yourself out there delivering hands on care in the early days if you find yourself a member of staff down.
Truthfully, if you aren’t in it to do good, then you won’t inspire those around you to do good and you’ll genuinely struggle to find quality people to come and work for you in the first place. I feel like I got lucky and picked the right business, now more than ever. It’s not for everyone, but it could be for you.”