Why should every business owner write an operations manual...and why now? What is the urgency? Creating an operations manual is a big job. It requires valuable time that most business owners would rather use elsewhere. Some owners complain that the manuals end up collecting dust on the shelf, so why write one?

Operations manuals are used for several reasons, among them are: to on-boarding new employees, build a second, third or forth (etc.) store, risk management and added value. Obviously, new employees need to be trained. The ops manual is often used to ensure that new employee training is consistent and accurate. Without this, employees are trained by the the most experienced employees, who may or may not be doing things the way the owner wants it done. Operations manuals eliminate this confusion.

By eliminating this confusion and documenting the required systems and routines , the business can grow and duplicate. Replication is the key to becoming a franchise, or successful chain. The most successful multi-unit chains write, use and maintain an operations manuals because they create consistency and uniformity.

Creating an operations manual is a risk management tool as well. What happens if the owner is suddenly "hit by a bus"? Who in the business understands all aspects of the systems that need to be implemented. Without written instructions regarding how to run the business, who would understand how to keep things moving while the owner recovers? Did you know that most businesses that suffer such a catastrophe fail within six months? This tragic end of successful businesses is the result of having all the operations locked in the owner's head.

Operations manuals add monetary value to the business. Business brokers know that owners who invest in writing a comprehensive operations manual (or at least an Owner's Emergency Handbook), increase the value of their business. Operation manuals can add between $10-20,000 to the sale price of a company, and eliminates the need of the owner to stay on and train the new owners how to run things. Who doesn't like more cash?

JumpStart Manuals give business owners the tools and process to write their own operations manuals. Whether one uses our template-style workbooks, hires a consultant, or strikes out alone, writing a standard operating manual is key your success. Operations manuals decrease inconsistency, improve employee training, avert catastrophic collapse and increasing the value of the company.

What business can afford not to have an operations manual?

For the 5 Most Fascinating Stories in Franchising, a weekly report, click here & sign up.



Search for Articles

Follow Us