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How to write an effective and reliable business plan

The essentials of writing a great business plan.

So, you’re ready to write your business plan.

First of all, congratulations on deciding to go into business!

The business plan is one of the first (and most important) documents to complete when starting a business.

Making it a good one is vital for many reasons.

Whether it is to apply for finance, attract a business partner or give you a clear path to achieving your business dreams, ensure that your plan achieves what you set out for it to do.

What needs to be covered in a business plan?

Executive Summary

The purpose of your Executive Summary is to make your business proposition understood by others.

Think of it as a short paragraph outlining what your business is and what it sets out to achieve.

Business Description

In addition to your summary, the business description should further detail your business’s purpose.

Here are some key questions to consider when writing this section.

  • What are the products/services it will provide?
  • What is its overall structure?
  • How will it achieve the business goals?

Market Analysis

This section is dedicated to the research underpinning your decision to go into business.

It includes market, competitor, and customer research.

It may be helpful to use SWOT analysis here.

People & Processes

Outline the people and processes that will be used to run the business effectively.

Organisational charts and process maps are your friends when constructing this section.

Marketing Plan & Sales Strategy

How will you attract customers/clients?

In this section, describe the activities that will take place to attract customers to enquire and buy from you.

Financials

Reveal the financial goals and expectations of the business in this section.

This proves the financial viability of the business.

Profit and loss, cash flow and balance sheets are good models here.

How a franchise model helps your business plan

With a franchise business like ServiceMaster Clean, you have the support of a world-renowned franchisor and nationwide brand.

As a result, the stress of writing a business plan is massively alleviated as much of the content is pre-established.

Can’t think of a sales pitch? We already have.

With over 60 years of experience in what we do, our proposition (delivering professional commercial and residential cleaning services to residents and commercial properties across the UK) is already set out.

As are our core services, the market, competitor and customer research.

ServiceMaster Clean’s systems for success have been tried, tested and proven to provide excellent results.

Our franchise models give you the support, tools, technology, and expertise in operations, sales, marketing, and recruitment to set up a thriving business.

Commercial Cleaning Opportunity:

The value of the commercial cleaning market in the UK was estimated to be around £5.6 billion in 2022.

So, you can expect an average gross profit percentage of 31%* and an average turnover of £1.1 million!

*These are projected averages based on franchisee turnover YTD 2021-2022, not financial certainties or expectations.

Residential Cleaning Opportunity:

There are approximately 27 million dwellings across the UK.

This multi-million-pound residential market consists of homeowners, tenants and landlords looking for a solution to maintain the appearance of their carpets, floorings and furnishings.

This means that by completing 423* cleans a year at a national job average of £133, you can earn £56,206 p.a.

*Based upon nine jobs per week, 48 weeks a year, five working days a week.

Working with our dedicated team, you’ll have support in your operational, sales and marketing activities to ensure you hit the ground running and are on the path to continued growth and success.

This includes a comprehensive starter pack that contains all the marketing and branding materials you need to make a great first impression.

Including:

  • Marketing and promotional materials
  • Vehicle branding package
  • Fully bespoke and maintained website
  • Pre-launch support from over 40 head office staff
  • Products, equipment, uniforms, stationery
  • Pre-planned Marketing Launch: local PR, Google Ads and a leaflet drop, targeted directly at your key customer base

As part of a franchise business, you’ll still be writing a business plan, but with the content and support behind you.

Don’t know where to start? We do.

There’s so much to get from a world-renowned franchisor.

Everything that we offer is to help you on your way to business success.

Whether that’s providing support with finances or giving you the tools for an excellent business plan.

Contact our head of franchise sales by calling 0116 275 9000 or emailing franchisesales@servicemaster.co.uk to find opportunities near you.

How to get the most from your franchisor with ServiceMaster Clean

Getting the most from a franchise.

Being part of a franchise is a choice, so every individual has their reasons for joining.

There are costs to joining a franchise, but the benefits far outweigh these.

Therefore, we recommend getting as much out of your franchise journey as possible.

At ServiceMaster Clean, we offer a plethora of support, so you can make the most of your franchisor relationship.

Support

The support you can receive as a franchisee in all stages of your journey is invaluable.

Initially, you may require hand-holding time whilst you find your feet.

In the middle, you could feel a little lost and need guidance to get back on track to move the needle forward.

Towards the end of your journey, you’ll likely seek to realise your investment and need assistance preparing your business for sale.

We’re here for all parts of your journey in whatever line of support that you need.

Our marketing professionals are on hand to help you sell the sizzle of your services; our operations team to get or keep your business in tip-top shape; and our IT, HR, and admin teams support the whole operation to function.

Training 

All of our new franchisees secure a place in our training academy.

You also benefit from ongoing training opportunities in marketing, sales, operations, and more.

It’s not compulsory, but much of our training is complimentary and designed for you to use.

Starter Pack and Return on Investment

At ServiceMaster Clean, you’ll make an initial investment depending on the opportunity, then we’ll give you the tools to make the most of the market.

Contract Services: £22,000 + VAT

Residential Services: £19,995 + VAT

Commercial Services: £23,000  + VAT

This cost covers your Starter Pack, which includes equipment, supplies, exclusive ServiceMaster Clean products, marketing launch activities and materials.

Your investment gets you:

  • Two-week training Academy and Operations Manual
  • Equipment and products
  • Uniforms
  • Stationary
  • Marketing and promotional materials
  • Vehicle branding package

And the opportunity to make some serious money.

Commercial Cleaning Opportunity:

The value of the commercial cleaning market in the UK was estimated to be around £5.6 billion in 2022.

So, you can expect an average gross profit percentage of 31%* and an average turnover of £1.1 million!

*These are projected averages based on franchisee turnover YTD 2021-2022, not financial certainties or expectations.

Residential Cleaning Opportunity:

There are approximately 27 million dwellings across the UK.

This multi-million-pound residential market consists of homeowners, tenants and landlords looking for a solution to maintain the appearance of their carpets, floorings and furnishings.

This means that by completing 423* cleans a year at a national job average of £133, you can earn £56,206 p.a.

*Based upon 9 jobs per week, 48 weeks a year, 5 working days a week.

Buy small and save big

As a small business, you may encounter poor economies of scale. Not as a franchisee!

We buy big so that you don’t have to.

Furthermore, we encourage our networks to tell us what they’d like to see in the warehouse so that we can buy it in bulk and pass the savings of doing so back to you.

Network Meetings 

You are never alone in a franchise.

Not only do you receive the support that you need from a world-renowned franchisor, but you also receive support from fellow like-minded business owners who have likely ‘been there and done that’.

You’ll have plenty of opportunities to meet with them regularly, and upon onboarding, you will be encouraged to contact your peers to establish relationships immediately.

Ideas Review Council 

We are passionate about ensuring our franchisees have a voice.

As such, we have a panel of franchisees who have been voted a seat by the franchise network to share feedback, issues, guidance, recommendations and praise back to us for action or notation.

Learn More

There’s so much to get from a world-renowned franchisor. Everything that we offer is to help you on your way to business success.

See what we can do for you today by booking an intro call with our head of franchise sales, call 0116 275 9000 or email franchisesales@servicemaster.co.uk to find opportunities near you.

Meet Stuart McCaig, the new owner of ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services in Bradford

We sat down with Stuart McCaig, the new owner of ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services Bradford.

ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services in Bradford is now under new management, having been sold by the previous owner, Clive Jones, to former data analyst Stuart McCaig.

We sat down with Stuart to see how he’s been getting on with his new business and discuss his aspirations for the future.

Get to know the owner

Before joining ServiceMaster, Stuart worked as a contractor and a permanent data analyst for Lloyds Bank.

“I did a multitude of tasks, but towards the end, it was data analytics, and for my final project, I was involved with a large-scale legal tendering process,” he says.

This background has informed his approach to decision-making and his direction.

After many years at Lloyds, he says he “wanted to be the master” of his “own path.”

So, he decided to step into something new.

After speaking with Clive and spending time in the business, Stuart’s long due diligence deliberation period gave him the answer: ServiceMaster Clean was the perfect choice.

Long-term goals and model projections

He is now ready to bring his committed, methodical and driven approach to contract cleaning and is focused on his long-term goals.

“I very much went in, eyes open,” he says.

“I knew it was going to be challenging, and I just try not to focus too much on or sweat that stuff too much and focus on the longer term, bigger picture.”

Stuart’s data-driven background and pragmatic approach mean he is confident of long-term success by following the ServiceMaster model.

A model that has seen members in the franchise network achieve great results and puts him on track to do the same, with the ability to reach a turnover of £1,600,000 in 9 years when onboarding just two new customers every month.

“I want to be able, in ten years, assured that the business is at a place I’m happy with, and then I can, I don’t want to say put my feet up a bit, but let the business organically grow, and put somebody in situ who’s going to help that business do that.”

“Then I can be involved with it, but not as heavily as I will be for the next five or ten years. That’s my long-term goal.”

ServiceMaster Support System

Stuart is helped on his journey by a nationwide network of franchisees and an expert support team at ServiceMaster HQ.

Including brand leader Guy Strang and our franchise sales team, who worked hard to bring him into the fold.

“Guy is great. He is always on the end of the phone if I need him.”

Could you be the next Stuart?

Don’t wait. See how we can help you join business owners taking their future into their own hands with ServiceMaster Clean Contract Services.

Call 0116 275 9000 or email franchisesales@servicemaster.co.uk to find opportunities near you.

The first steps to buying a franchise

Turn the corner using a proven franchise business model. 

A franchise is the perfect route if you want to be in business for yourself but not by yourself.

They offer the benefit of an established brand, a proven business model and support in the areas where you need it.

There are almost 48,000 franchise businesses in the UK, and many brands to choose from.

But this much choice can be a little daunting. Analysis paralysis is real. It’s so easy to get caught in its safety net.

With that in mind, we’ve put together a few pointers to help set you on your way to breaking free from the 9-5.

Why are you looking at a franchise?

It’s important to know what your ‘why’ is. Why do you want to go into business?

Here are some common whys:

  • “I want to be my own boss.”
  • “I’ve noticed a gap in the market.”
  • “I can do it better than they do it.”
  • “I want a better lifestyle for my family.”
  • “I want to invest my redundancy/inheritance.”

Once you know why, it’s easier to find something suitable.

What are your options?

Your options are likely narrowed down by the available territory, cost, commitment, and credentials required to join.

Taking all of those into account, you’ll still find yourself with a lot of options. Choose the one most suited to your ‘why’.

Then, do your research.

Research  

Simply for ease, online research is the best place to start.

Methods of online franchise research:

  • Take a look at franchise directories
  • Read published franchise articles
  • Check associations like the BFA (British Franchise Association)
  • Visit franchisor websites
  • Follow social media channels for a broad and varied spectrum of opportunities.

For offline research, speak to franchisees and ask for advice from respected sources.

Where possible, utilise the franchise opportunities’ services for insight into the business.

Enquire & Engage

Once you have narrowed your search, enquire with the franchise brands that most suit your ‘why’.

Now is your opportunity to conduct more in-depth research and to form a relationship with the franchisor.

In franchising, relationships are the bread and butter. They make the world go around.

So, make sure it clicks. The business and the brand feel right for you to take advantage of the opportunity.

ServiceMaster Ltd. is committed to aiding your research, ensuring your decision to join us is right for you.

Contact Us

If running your own professional cleaning company, backed by 60 years of experience as an industry leader sounds like the opportunity for you, contact our friendly franchise sales team on 0116 275 9000 or email franchisesales@servicemaster.co.uk to find opportunities near you.