Care for our aging seniors is quickly becoming a significant issue facing our society and our economy. It’s a mathematical certainty that there will not be enough caregivers for the growing number of seniors by 2050 unless we rethink how and where seniors live their final years. The oldest Baby Boomers, America’s second largest generation, turned 71 this year. Consider that nearly 90 percent of those over 65 want to stay in their residence for as long as possible according to AARP. Now consider that the average age of a Home Instead Senior Care client is 78.
Imagine the growth potential in this industry.
The home care sector has grown by 6.6 percent annually since 2013, compared to 2.6 percent for the overall franchise industry, according to The Wall Street Journal. And the need will only continue to grow as the population ages and families struggle to meet the needs of their aging relatives.
With the demand for home care services rising and the initial cost of home care franchising relatively low, coupled with the fact that the return on investment for home care franchises is frequently higher than other franchise industries, entrepreneurs are increasingly investing in the booming industry.
Choosing the Right Partner
While great potential for growth exists in this industry, it is critical to choose the right partner to truly succeed. Entrepreneurs can have passion for their business, but without the support of the right partner it can be challenging. When researching opportunities, there are several key things franchisees should consider:
- Brand Reputation – The home care industry is unique. Franchisees are working directly with older adults and their families and are truly making a difference in their lives. When choosing a franchise partner, it’s important to take the company’s reputation and values into account because they will guide the way the business operates. Franchisors set the tone for the brand, but franchisees are the ones connecting with the community and living out the values every day.
- Corporate Support – Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of opening a franchise is the resources provided by the home office. Joining a franchise network gives franchisees access to many resources, such as marketing, training and development opportunities. Franchisors like Home Instead Senior Care offer ongoing training opportunities to ensure franchisees are set up to succeed.
- Networking – The network of other franchise owners is also an important resource to consider and explore. Networking and collaborating with other home care franchisees can offer great insights into the business and what it takes to own a successful franchise. It can also be an extremely positive environment to work within a network of other owners. The energy and drive of the other franchise owners can be great motivation.
- Longevity – When opening a new business, you assume you’re in it for the long haul. But statistics from the Bureau of Labor shows that about 20 percent of small businesses fail in their first year, and 50 percent of businesses fail in their fifth year. To ease this risk, look for a business opportunity that is established and has staying power. The home care industry is one such opportunity that will continue to grow. Couple that opportunity with a franchisor that is an established leader in the industry and has decades of experience to draw from in the tools and support it provides to help franchisees succeed.
- Right Fit – Perhaps the most important factor in choosing a franchise is ensuring it’s a right fit both with your personal passions and your community needs. For example, our franchise owners report a great deal of personal fulfillment in knowing they are helping older adults live a more independent life on their own terms, while also addressing a significant societal need.
Opportunity in the home care industry will only continue to grow as the population ages and seniors choose to remain at home. However, it will be key for franchisees to choose the right partner to truly succeed and make a difference in the lives of the families they support.
Jeff Huber is President and Chief Executive Officer of Home Instead Senior Care, the leading global provider of home care services for older adults. Huber was named President in 2010 and added the role of Chief Executive Officer in May 2015. In his position, Huber oversees global operations and directs strategic planning and advocacy initiatives for the franchise network. Huber joined Home Instead Senior Care in 1998 as a Franchise Development Manager when the organization consisted of 125 franchises. Today, Home Instead Senior Care provide more than 60 million hours care annually through more than 1,100 franchises offices in 12 countries. Under Huber’s leadership, Home Instead is committed to addressing the challenges of the aging global population by promoting consumer choice in care. Huber has also increased the organization’s commitment to leadership development and training to empower CAREGivers and families and to advance the organization’s mission: To enhance the lives of aging adults and their families.