Papa John’s sets up virtual discovery meetings as it eyes more UK kitchens

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Papa John’s has begun holding virtual discovery meetings designed for potential franchisees to learn more about the fast food franchise.

The pizza chain said its franchise recruitment process remains the same despite the lockdown, but some elements have become virtual in order to get prospective franchisees up and running.

Phil Gaffer, QFP, franchise sales and business development manager at Papa John’s UK, explained: “I usually start by speaking to potential franchisees over the phone, then they attend a discovery day where we meet in person. Normally, I’m on the road twice a week holding discovery meetings across the UK. Now we’ve launched weekly ‘virtual’ discovery meetings online.

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“These one-to-one sessions are the first step in getting to know the candidate and for them to get to know Papa John’s. Many have tried Papa John’s and love the product and now these remote sessions are the chance to learn how the tried and tested franchise concept works. They are an opportunity for both parties to ask questions to see if there could be a good fit for the future. I am also planning virtual regional recruitment events which will start to be held early in the summer too.”

For those a little further down their franchise journey, Papa John’s will soon begin holding its first online guest visit event. Under normal circumstances, this is the next step where the candidates visit its Quality Control Centre in Milton Keynes.

The remote visit will include meeting key members of the team including those from national marketing, local marketing, construction and site selection, finance and product development, as well as the leadership team. There will also be a virtual store visit to watch pizza being made.

The guest visit will now last half a day instead of a full day and will be held each month until it is able to resume in-person visits.

“For many people, the Covid-19 situation has meant a change in work patterns,” said Mr Gaffer. “More time at home has given people the chance to reflect, take stock, think of the big picture and their future. I’ve been talking to those who are looking ahead and interested in pursuing a new direction.”

Papa John’s is currently looking to sign up new multi-unit franchisees throughout the UK.

It is particularly looking for franchisees to develop businesses in the North West, North East, Nottinghamshire and the South West.

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Andrew Seymour

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