Is Temporary Work the New Permanent?


The Paradigm Shift to Temporary Staffing


In the two years since the Great Recession ended in 2009, staffing firms have created more jobs than any other industry. As Jason Deverant, vice president of sales for @Work Personnel Services says, “Private sector temporary staffing is a leader in job creation.”

Despite the economy’s sluggish recovery, if you own a staffing franchise business has been good. According to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics, the temporary help services industry put nearly half a million Americans back to work and accounted for 91 percent of non-farm job growth from June 2009 – June 2011. For @Work, this has meant a 30 percent increase in profits over just last year.


“We’re looking for similar growth numbers this year,” Deverant adds.

As an industry, temporary staffing and recruiting are hyper-cyclical, fluctuating with the contraction and expansion of the economy. A study from the American Staffing Association suggests that temporary staffing firms lose jobs first during an economic contraction and create jobs first during an economic recovery. In essence, the temporary staffing and recruiting industry is a litmus test for the rest of the economy.


For a variety of reasons, there hasn’t been a significant shift back to permanent hiring since the recovery began. Firms are, according to Deverant “a little gun shy” about returning to the old business model of hiring employees permanently.


“Awareness of staffing companies has increased and attitudes have changed,” explains Deverant. The Great Recession has issued a new staffing paradigm: temporary might just be the new permanent.


For the employer, staffing provides an obvious value. Shielded from workers compensation litigations, unemployment, and the need to offer benefits, firms are able to mitigate the inherent risks of hiring a permanent employee while still getting a project done on time. Staffing takes into account the seasonality of certain industries, too. In addition, using a staffing agency is an enormous time saver for the employer.


“Very often we hear, ‘It’s hard for us to find a new candidate, I don’t have the time.’,” says Deverant.

But what about the employee? Is staffing good for the temp, too? According to Jason Deverant, it is. Instead of being tied down to one particular job every day, a temporary hire can pick and choose which projects he or she wishes to be a part of. There’s an increase in modality that’s coveted many full-time employees. In addition, work is often accomplished in a more project-oriented manner. The temporary staffer is treated more like a contractor than just a “filler” employee.

How staffing benefits both employer and employee.

The need for staffing reaches into multiple industries extending beyond the traditional administrative work, which is why @Work’s franchising model includes four distinct staffing lines: personnel, medical services, search group, and helping hands.

“Our model is more cost effective,” says Deverant, “There’s about a 30 percent savings to comparable business models.”


In addition to providing staffing for multiple industries, @Work prides itself on its screening process. Finding quality temporary staffers is a huge part of what has made @Work a major competitor in the world of staffing. When a firm approaches you to fill a position, they’re trusting you to do the same kind of thorough recruitment and background check they’d do– if they had the time.

Of course, @Work’s dedication to finding franchisees is equally strong.


“An ideal @Work franchisee candidate is, of course, someone with staffing experience,” jokes Deverant, “But most of all we’re looking for someone with relationship development skills.”


Many of @Works’ franchisees are former human resources professionals who have made the switch to staffing. Those who aren’t skilled in sales (or might be a little rusty) need not worry. As part of the franchise’s standard fees, @Work dedicates a substantial amount of time preparing new franchisees for their new business ownership role.


“Our model is fairly inexpensive when you break the costs down,” says Deverant. Of course, a lot depends on the market in which a franchisee chooses to establish his or her location, but an @Work franchise usually costs between $77,000 and $120,000. According to Deverant, this includes the franchise fee, training fees, estimation of start-up costs, equipment purchases, client development cash, and additional overhead. As Deverant notes, franchisees can make frugal choices and bring this cost down even more.


For more information on @Work or how to become an @Work franchisee, please visit











Q&A with Stan Friedman of Tutor Doctor

Where are you from? How and why did you become involved with Tutor Doctor? What does your job entail?

A native New Yorker, but an Atlanta transplant since 1989.

I became involved with Tutor Doctor because it is a brand who’s time is now!  Low barrier of entry,  real estate, high margins, much needed service.  All of the stakeholders win with this brand.  Franchisees, franchisor, and the families in the communities that we serve.

I am the Vice President of North America Franchise Development.  I oversee a team of professional franchise recruiters and manage our relationships with our franchise marketing partners and brokerage networks.

As a member of Tutor Doctor management team, what’s the most rewarding part of being part of a franchise? 

Being part of a dynamic and passionate leadership team is personally, very rewarding.  It is great having a peer group that shares the same vision, values and ethics.

Quickly describe the franchisee selection process to me. What do you look for in a franchisee? Do you have a profile in mind?

There is nothing quick about our process.  We very carefully and methodically work with our candidates to be certain that both sides of their brains are fully engaged in what it takes to successfully operate a Tutor Doctor franchise.  Many times the applicants are tutors or teachers, which can work out just fine, but the profile is more of a marketing and networking professional that can manage multiple relationships: tutors, families and other members of the community, with whom our franchisees do LOTS of cross promotion.

What can we expect from your franchise concept in the years to come? What can we expect from the children’s education industry in the future?

You can expect continued, sustainable growth.  The need for the services that our franchisees provides is a growing segment.  Kids unfortunately get less and less attention as education budgets get slashed in tough times.  We pick up lots of that slack for families that want the very best for their children.

How extensive is the training for your new franchisees? Do you try and develop personal relationships with them?

Franchisee training is intensive.  There is a 50 hour pre-training curriculum that is followed by 6 intensive days in the classroom and in the field at Home Office.  Following that, there is ongoing e-learning and actual mentoring with high level producers that spend two weeks with our new franchisees shadowing them in the mentor’s territory and then two weeks of the mentors working with the new franchisees in their territories.  Personal relationships are a cornerstone of the Tutor Doctor culture.

Do you provide ongoing support? If yes, how so?

Would you expect anything less from a professional franchise organization that is focused on tutoring?  We provide ongoing multi-media e-learning programs, support coaching calls, conferences and seminars throughout the calendar year.

How’s business? Is Tutor Doctor growing?

Growth is explosive.  We are one of the fastest growing brands in one of the most explosive market segments.

 How was the idea of starting Tutor Doctor conceived? 

About 10 years ago we had a simple idea and a desire to make a difference.  We wondered why parents had to adjust their family’s busy schedules and drive half way across town, just to put their kids into another classroom with more kids, when in fact it was the classroom experience that their child was stuggling with in the first place.

How has the recession affected sales and growth? 

Parents may cut back on their “Fourbucks” in tough times, but will not cut back on services for their kids.  Strangely enough, parents will spend less with Tutor Doctor for a more personal, custom tailored experience for their kids and we come to the home, as opposed to paying more and receiving less at a learning center.

You’ve got tremendous business and franchise experience. What’s some advice you’d give those who are beginning the franchise selection process? What would you tell someone who’s in a management position like yours in terms of advice? 

Begin with the end in mind.  Do your introspectives on drives you… what would you do with your time if you didn’t have to earn a living working.  Seek your passion and make a go of owning your business doing what matters to you.  As for what I would say to others in positions like mine, believe in your concepts and the opportunities you are representing with all of your heart.  You are helping people make life changing decisions.  Make it about those that you are serving.  Help the right people, at the right times, for the right reasons and everyone will win.

Is Tutor Doctor involved in VetFran? Does Tutor Doctor provide any financial incentives for veterans?

We are very engaged in VetFran and have active programs to encourage returning veterans to join us.



Tutor Doctor was founded in 1999 as an alternative to the “one-to-many” teaching model most extra-curricular learning centers offer by providing a personalized one-on-one, in-home tutoring service to students.  The company quickly grew and in 2003 turned to franchising as a way of expanding the company’s impact and meeting the vast market demand.  Now with offices internationally in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, the Tutor Doctor vision is becoming a reality as the lives of students and their families are being positively impacted throughout the world.  Tutor Doctor is affiliated with the National Tutor Association (NTA) whose mission is to foster the advancement of professional and peer tutoring, support research into best practices and standards for all tutors, support tutor training, advocate for tutor certification, and uphold the NTA Code of Ethics.

About Stan Friedman

Stan Friedman is a Certified Franchise Executive specializing in franchise development for more than 23 years. He has held leadership and executive positions including Senior VP of FranConnect, a franchise client conference, Executive VP and partner at Wing Zone, Executive VP at WSI Internet, ERA Franchise Systems and Prudential Real Estate Affiliates.   Friedman is a founding Board member of The International Franchise Association’s (IFA’s) Diversity Institute, where he has served as First Vice-Chair since its inception.  In 2011, the International Franchise Association honored Friedman with its Ronald E. Harrison Diversity Award, previously awarded only seven times in the IFA’s 52 year history.  Friedman also chairs the advisory board of the Professional Athlete Franchise Initiative, (PAFI) collaborating with IFA and its members to bring soon-to-retire professional athletes to a new playing field, that of franchise ownership. Now, Friedman has expanded his professional profile to include Tutor Doctor, a one-on-one, at home tutoring franchise with more than 200 units in 7 countries. Friedman became its VP of North American Franchise Development on May 1, 2012.

Interview with Bob Wright, COO of Charley’s Grilled Subs


Article first published as A Heart For Service: Interview with Bob Wright, COO of Charley’s Grilled Subs on Technorati.

In September, Charley’s Grilled Subs opened their 100th restaurant on a military installation on Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Seattle, W.A. It was Charley Shin, Charley’s CEO and Founder, who, “was smiling the widest when the first soldier came through the lunch line,” says Bob Wright, chief operating officer of Charley’s.

A self-described “incurable patriot” despite having not served in the military, Wright shares a heart for service with both Shin and the international Philly Steak sandwich franchise’s employees, which he says, “makes the franchise’s relationship with the military so special.”


It’s this heart for service that Wright loves about Charley’s Grilled Subs and what attracted him to franchising in the first place.


“My grandfather always said everyone needs a job where they work for tips,” says Wright, who got his start in franchising as ‘the pizza delivery guy’ in college for Domino’s. Eventually, Wright became a Domino’s franchisee for about a year. “I’ve been there, too,” Wright says. “Nothing replaces that experience of being the business owner, of being responsible for every customer’s experience.”


Though his time as a Domino’s franchisee was short, it was his time as ‘the pizza delivery guy’ that was so influential in Wright’s franchising career. “I didn’t start out wanting to be in the food service industry,” he says, “but I loved it.”


Over the course of his career, Wright has had the chance to work with big-name franchises like Checkers, Wendy’s, Café Express and, of course, Charley’s. Though Wright’s original plan was to practice law. Today, he practices management. To him, serving as chief operating officer of Charley’s means he gets to develop, train and lead other to success. “For a quarter of a century, I’ve had the opportunity to serve others; whether it’s my team or franchisees. It brings out the best in a person.”


With Wright, his words express a continuous theme of service in the name of others, which is why he fits in so perfectly at Charley’s Grilled Subs. Charley’s makes its food to order. While this might sound obvious, it’s not—most food court establishments “assemble to order” as Wright likes to say. “We don’t put anything on the grill until you order it,” he explains.


This is because, like Wright, the people at Charlie’s believe “a good quality meal can make a difference in someone’s day,” he says proudly.


For those interested in becoming a Charley’s franchisee, the selection process is straightforward. Financial liquidity and wherewithal are necessary. Above all? “A heart of service,” says Wright. It’s important for potential franchisees to have adequate experience running a business in a managerial role. It’s not easy balancing the business side of the franchise and pleasing customers.


With all that said, “Charley’s has experience same-store growth throughout the recession,” says Wright. “Restaurant units have seen 13% growth this year and expect a 20% unit growth through to 2013,” he adds. Charley’s Grilled Subs has a growth model in place that still includes the bread and butter food court locations but specifically internationally, which are traditionally underserved.

Visit Franchise Clique’s website if you’re interested in more food franchises or sandwich franchises.

Exclusive Interview with Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant President

What began as a way to earn some extra cash in college turned into a career for Hugo Marin. After working part-time in a small, family-owned Mexican restaurant, he realized nothing would keep him on his toes like the food and beverage industry. He changed his major to business administration, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Today, thirty years later, Hugo Marin is the President of Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant. Marin’s résumé is impressive. Since leaving engineering behind, Marin rose through the ranks at the small, family-owned restaurant where he got his start, eventually becoming a manager. From there, it was on to more management positions at The Cheesecake Factory and Romano’s Macaroni Grill. Hugo served as vice president of operations at Ted’s Montana Grill and, later, as chief operating officer of Al Copeland Investments.




It was during Hugo’s time at Al Copeland Investments, the parent company of Copeland’s, Cheesecake Bistro and Copeland’s Express, that the opportunity to work for Margarita’s came his way. He had been approached by headhunters before looking for candidates with his years of experience, but hadn’t been interested until now.

“My stars aligned,” says Hugo of the job opportunity. Marin’s wife is originally from New England and the two of them had been patrons of Margarita’s for years before moving to Louisiana so Marin could work for Copeland’s. “It was like coming back home,” he explains.


Getting Down to Business


Nine weeks ago, when Hugo Marin became president of Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant, he was charged with expanding the Margarita’s brand both as a franchise and as a corporation.

For 2012, he’ll put the majority of his effort into supporting new and prospective franchisees. “Knowing how to manage relationships with franchisees,” is something Marin says he’ll bring with him courtesy of his years with Ted’s Montana Grill and Copeland’s. As of the first of June, Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant’s welcomed its first franchisees wand their new location in Livingston, N.J. The newest members of the Margarita’s family are in the process of opening four additional locations.

As far as the Mexican restaurant’s corporate growth is concerned, Marin says he’ll focus on that component of his strategy in 2013. He hopes to perfect Margarita’s franchising model and have a strong infrastructure in place so the company “can grow sustainably.”


This disciplined approach to franchising stems from co-founders John and Dave Pelletier. The brother duo staunchly believes that being successful franchisors means viewing things in terms of “our business” as opposed to “their business” when it comes to the franchisee-franchisor relationship. Rapid-fire franchising doesn’t allow for Hugo, John or Dave to provide the type of support they feel their franchisee partners deserve.


Being a Margarita’s Franchisee is Like Being a New Family Member

“The perfect Margarita’s Mexican Restaurant franchisee is experienced in quick serve restaurants, quick casual restaurants and multi-unit franchises,” says Hugo. Of course, access to financial resources is also important. Franchisee hopefuls need access to capital to grow and sustain their franchise location for 5-6 years. The initial investment to open a Margarita’s franchise unit is between $1.5 million to $2.5 million.


“We’ve been lucky,” says Hugo of the financial fortitude of Margarita’s. Their franchisees haven’t experienced any problems securing loans, SBA or otherwise. The franchise is pre-approved by the SBA for loans.


In addition to financial backing, “It’s important that the franchisee has local knowledge of consumers, laws and regulations,” says Marin. Part of the Margarita’s culture is its commitment to the local community. Those who want to become a part of the Margarita’s family must be capable of duplicating Margarita’s brand and culture. Margarita’s Mexican Restaurants are, above all, a family.


“The family feel that the owners have created is like no other,” says Hugo of founders John and Dave. There are a number of employees, from servers to corporate employees, who have been with the company between 15 and 20 years. One such employee in the Boston area has been a server for 22 years. She’s otherwise employed, but picks up a shift or two during the week because she loves the work environment so much.


All franchisees have Hugo, John and Dave’s personal cell phone numbers and are met with on a monthly basis to receive support and guidance from the executive team. According to Hugo, the secret to the franchise’s family feel is that John and Dave understand that, “it’s not about them. They take into consideration how people are going to react. People work hard for them without being asked.”


That’s the kind of love and dedication Hugo himself has for the company. “Right now my number one goal and challenge is immersing myself in the culture inside-out,” Hugo explains. “I’m learning the Margarita lingo.” Marin feels it’s important to run a company as if you own it—just another way he’s committed to making himself a true member of the Margarita’s family.


“We’ve been around for 25 years; if you want to be a part of a family that celebrates your successes on both the corporate and franchising sides, this is a great company to work for,” concludes Hugo.


Christian Brothers Automotive: Interview with Top Management

One of the fastest growing automotive franchises isn’t looking for franchisees with past automotive experience. It’s why Automotive Repair For Dummies is required reading for a new Christian Brothers Automotive franchisee. Christian Brothers Automotive isn’t in the car business; it’s in the customer care business.


One of the most anxiety-ridden processes is dealing with car trouble. So often we’re told stories of product-pushing mechanics and cumulative costs high enough to make you faint. It’s rare to hear about a place that puts the comfort of the customer first, except at Christian Brothers Automotive.


The successful concept began as one garage owned and operated by chief executive officer Mark Carr. Carr is a self-made businessman who fell into the car business accidentally when a member of his Bible study group mentioned he wanted help opening up a garage.


Now, 19 years later, Christian Brothers Automotive has 85 locations already serving customers across the U.S. and plenty more locations coming own the pipeline.


We interviewed Vice President of Franchise Development Josh F. Wall about Christian Brothers Automotive, what it looks for in new franchisees, how their franchising process works and finally, what we can expect from the franchise in the future.

Interview with Christian Brothers Automotive VP of Development Josh Wall

You can follow Christian Brothers Automotive via Twitter and find the location nearest you on Facebook.