Fuelled by globalisation and the advent of technology, the franchise economy extends to virtually every industry sector you can imagine. The hospitality and service industries are prime examples, though retail, automotive, and business support services are often heavily franchised.
And it’s big business. Franchise organisations are expected to add nearly 800,000 new jobs, and contribute $477 billion to total Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2021 - and that’s just in the US!
Of course, the fragmented nature of the franchise model creates unique business challenges, too - a key one being how to support rapid onboarding and continuous upskilling in an extended enterprise environment.
Here’s how one Fuse customer is using our platform to support the continual sharing of expert knowledge in a franchised ecosystem
IHG Hotels & Resorts (IHG) is a multinational hospitality company that has +6000 managed and franchised hotels around the world. In 2016, company leaders were looking to improve both onboarding and professional development for its General Managers (GMs).
Some of these GMs are in charge of managed hotels, while others look after franchise estates. The goal was simple: deliver equitable and consistent training and development opportunities for every GM in the IHG network, including those in franchised hotels.
As Shane de Saram, Global Leadership Development Manager at IHG explains: “We don’t differentiate GMs based on whether they work in a managed or franchised hotel. Our goal is to provide each and every one with equal access to learning and development - both for their benefit, and for the benefit of wider business performance.
Fuse supports this by providing very succinct learning experiences that enable our busy GMs to continually share and access the expert knowledge they need, right when they need it.”
So how exactly does Fuse support learner access to IHG’s subject matter experts (SMEs), and how is the platform being used to share and retain tacit knowledge for the purpose of continual upskilling and leadership development?
Shane explains that IHG is using Fuse to facilitate a ‘Begin’ and ‘Belong’ learning programme that supports rapid onboarding, as well as ongoing professional development. To put it simply, Fuse provides a ‘one stop shop’ for leadership development, bringing all the best and most relevant subject matter expertise into one universal space so that GMs can easily access and apply it for the benefit of hotel operations.
But not only that, Fuse also stores and categorises this experience-based know-how so that it’s instantly - and forever - available to hotel general managers, exactly when they need it.
By engaging Fuse, IHG has also removed the learning silos that so often exist in franchise ecosystems. Today, the platform is supercharging access to the critical operational expertise and learned experiences that drive performance.
In fact, every single piece of learning content within IHG’s instance of Fuse has been generated by either a hotel GM or functional SME. The result? A thriving hub of tacit know-how that would have otherwise been locked away inside the heads of company experts.
With Fuse, expert knowledge can now be freely captured, stored, and shared across IHG’s extended enterprise - a long-term solution that eradicates the issue of SME knowledge loss.
But extending L&D to franchise employees is not the only way Fuse has removed silos and barriers to learning at IHG.
As Shane explains:
“The InterContinental Hotels Groups has more than 6000 hotels across the Americas, EMEAA, and Greater China, so you can imagine the sheer number of languages spoken across our network of managed and franchised GMs.
Fuse eradicates those barriers through its extensive language capabilities - something that we know is key to driving learner engagement and, ultimately, increased business performance.”
To learn how Fuse can unlock and retain SME knowledge in your franchised or extended enterprise, book your demo here.