Avant is helping its franchisees to take action to maintain the high quality of their homecare services and retain care staff post-Brexit.
The demand for homecare is growing but changes in the market mean that homecare suppliers need to work hard to keep up. In this situation franchisees benefit from having head office help. Avant is circulating a template letter, drawn up by the UKHCA, to its franchisees, (or, sending the letter on behalf of its franchisees) which emphasises to the LAs for which they provide care services that rates paid for LA contracts need to be raised or maintained in order to maintain standards and even viability.
Avant MD Sally Graham says: “This is a good example of how being a franchisee beats starting up a business in the care sector on your own. Many of our franchisees take on LA contracts to provide homecare services, but with the annual round of tendering for such services coming up, and LAs under pressure to make savings, individually-owned care providers will have to deal with the paperwork for themselves. At Avant, however, our franchisees benefit from the advice and help of our head office regarding changes to the care market, regulations, and business advice.”
Sally explains: “Avant is a member of the UKHCA, which is urging its member homecare providers to point out to LAs that any cuts to the rates they pay for homecare services means that service will suffer, and staff will be harder to recruit. At Avant we are dedicated to providing the highest standard of service to our customers, and we do not want to compromise that, so we are using the UKHCA template letter, which can be adapted to suit a provider’s particular situation, sent to local authorities.”
Avant is also circulating advice to its franchisees about the effect of Brexit on carer recruitment and retention. Around 18% of the carer workforce join from outside the UK, so ultimately Brexit may impact their capacity to live and work here. Avant is circulating advice, drawn up by the UKHCA, that sets out the current situation and recommends that homecare providers continue to encourage members of their workforce (and their families) who are eligible to join the EU Settlement Scheme.
Sally says: “We, and all our franchisees, value our carers – they are the backbone of our quality service and we do not want to lose them. As a responsible franchisor we are helping our franchisees by providing them with advice that will help them deal with the situation.”
Avant is looking for more franchisees to set up a homecare businesses, with the back-up of an experienced, proven business, which knows how and when to provide its franchisees with the help that individual start-ups in the growing care sector cannot always call upon.