Home Instead, we caught up with the team at Home Instead Geelong a leading provider of high quality, relationship based in home care.
- When did you buy your franchise?
I got the wheels in motion in early 2018, and by June of that year we had begun operations, hired staff and took on our first clients shortly afterwards.
- How did you find out about the franchise and why did you choose that franchise?
I was already working in the industry and was somewhat familiar with the Home Instead name already, then I saw an ad on LinkedIn about an opportunity to purchase a Home Instead Franchise in Regional Victoria.
It was enticing as I always felt I could add more to the industry by running my own operation, I had ideas I wanted to implement and the franchise option with Home Instead allowed me to get a foothold in the industry and opportunity to implement some of the ideas I had.
I did my due diligence and market research, analysing the franchise options available in Aged Care and I found Home Instead to be the clear leader. It was the standout franchise for me, I knew I wanted to work with them.
It isn’t just a mission statement or a selling point, Home Instead really offers fantastic support, high quality resources as well as excellent training for owners, office staff and caregivers. The training and available resources gave me the peace of mind that I needed to take this step.
It is the largest and most successful global brand in this space, a leading provider and from engaging with them I could see exactly why they had such a stellar reputation.
- What was your working background?
My own story is a very long one! I am qualified as an engineer and began my professional career working in the oil fields in North Africa, but I couldn’t stand the toxic working culture and made a decision to leave the industry.
This experience lit a fire in my belly to one day be in a position to create a workplace that I could be proud of, one that people would want to come and work in, to enjoy the culture and the environment.
Since my move to Australia, I have worked across hospitality, horticulture, sales, IT and eventually a consultant role in the Aged Care industry.
I’d been working as a Business consultant in the Aged Care industry for about 4 years before I started Home Instead in Geelong.
- What was the turning point that made you realise you wanted to change your career path?
Once I had made my way into the industry, I wanted to make a larger impact by running my own business. I could see a gap in the market, there was a serious lack of high-quality in-home care services. I was confident I could provide a viable alternative to seniors to save them from going into an Aged Care facility by staying at home for as long as possible.
I saw a profit over the people industry, one that prioritised the monetisation of an older person’s needs, not one that empowered seniors to live life to its fullest and to remain as independent as possible for as long as possible. I wanted to change
People say you should “be the change you want to see” and living by that mantra I have been able to help create a positive change in the industry and seeing that play out is very rewarding.
- What was the process like once you signed the franchise agreement? As far as training, site selection, fit out, etc.
My wife and I were invited to a one-week intensive training at the National Office in Brisbane to learn all aspects of the business.
On top of the training and onboarding we received assistance with selecting our first office and a variety of fit out options.
We were assigned a ‘Business Coach’ who is still working with us, to assist us developing the business and developing ourselves as leaders in the industry. Our Business Coach spent the first week with us, assisting us with setting up the office and with business development activities.
- What type of training/support was (still is) provided to you?
On top of the initial onboarding and training the National Office offers outstanding support in all aspects of the business – including Marketing, Employee Relations, People & Culture, Technology, Quality Management System, Care Management and Aged Care legislations and compliance –basically covering every aspect of the business so it was a robust onboarding and there is ongoing support.
- Has your work/life balance improved since buying the franchise?
Absolutely it has. My Geelong office is well set up with a strong team of very capable professionals running the business without the need for my constant supervision.
Due to this I am able to be hands on and provide support to my team, but I also feel I am in control of my own lifestyle and can carve out more time to spend with my family.
I have recently become a Registered Training Organisation and have the time to add extra value to my business due to the improved work-life balance.
- If someone was interested in joining your franchise system, what would you say to them?
First of all, I would advise that they do your research. Be really thorough and ask lots of questions. Be very clear about your outcome and know your purpose, this will help guide the bigger decisions you have to make along the journey.
Experience is invaluable so reach out and talk to as many Franchise Owners as possible, get their perspective on things and take their advice on what to look out for.
Have your finances ready so when you make your mind up you can move right away and hit the ground running.
My advice would be to hire people early. Build a solid foundation of staff from which you can build.
Most important of all, once you have made your decision you must have 100% commitment and dedication to the business. There will be teething problems and challenges along the way so believing in what you are doing will give you the extra energy and strength you need to overcome them.
- Any last thoughts on a particular aspect of your franchise system that stands out to you?
It is a fantastic network to be part of. The other owners and the National Office are very supportive. Working in the industry is very rewarding, you know you are doing something special and very meaningful.
The system allows you to see the impact you are having on the lives of the people under your care and their family which is a fantastic feeling.