While a recent survey has revealed that fees, commission and pay structures are driving factors for most industry professionals when it comes to leaving or joining their company, one network says brand is still important.
Residential Property Manager's sister publication Real Estate Business recently surveyed 486 sales agents, principals and property managers about what would make them leave their current network/independent arrangement, and what they would focus on when looking to join a new network.
When asked to rank the reasons to change their current network or independent arrangement, respondents ranked franchise fee/commission structure/pay structure as the most important factor (37.3 per cent).
This was followed by insufficient training/education support (31.5 per cent), poor IT/technology (25.1 per cent), weak brand (24.7 per cent), lack of marketing/advertising support (23.7 per cent), and not enough head office support (20.7 per cent).
Franchise fee/commission structure/pay structure was also important in deciding which network or independent office to join, with 61.2 per cent of respondents giving this a very important rating. This was closely followed by brand, which was considered most important by 60 per cent of respondents (respondents were asked to rate each of six categories, from most important to least important).
Yet according to LJ Hooker network development manager Andrew McCulloch, the group were not finding fees were an issue for prospective franchise owners.
“Those that have opened an LJ Hooker office have joined us because they are attracted to our brand, service proposition and high level of support,” he said.
“So in fact, we are finding the opposite. Their greatest concern is not about fees but helping them to keep on top of marketing, brand development, technology and internal systems so they can concentrate on selling and leasing homes – their core business.”
Mr McCulloch's views were consistent with last year's survey results, which revealed that brand was the main reason for changing real estate companies.
According to Michelle Williams, director @home Property Management, a franchise brand was both a positive and negative element that she had considered when she was establishing her agency.
“If you take on someone’s brand then you are perceived by the public to be one,” she said. “For me, I see a lot of people who deal with agencies in different areas and if they have a bad experience with one Ray White, they don’t use another Ray White.
“I didn’t like the idea of somebody else’s office having control over my brand and that’s essential when you’re dealing with a franchise group. For me, it was about creating a brand that represented what we were all about."
Ms Williams said in attracting new employees to her office, it always came down to the environment and the culture.
“We survey our team very regularly and find out what is important to them and the reasons why they like working here and the reasons they don’t, so having a very clear understanding of what drives people and what motivates them is the important thing," she said.
“We use social media a lot for creating a vibe of what things are like in our environment. We’re quite social, so we have a lot of social activities that we have with our team. Definitely for me, people will be attracted and be retained by the environment"