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Fathom Tips: Franchises
Fathom Tips: Franchises

Best practices for franchise and franchise location KPI management, analysis & reporting

Updated over a week ago


πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: You can download and view franchise sample reports at the bottom of this article.

Benchmarking a franchise group

If several franchise locations have been added to the same Fathom organisation, they can be benchmarked against one another.

Internally benchmarking locations of the same franchise provides deeper and more tailored insights than external industry benchmarking. You can identify best practices within your franchise rather than basing performance on generalised industry standards.

Creating a benchmark group is no additional cost in Fathom and provides more analysis tools and reporting components. A benchmark group can include up to 500 companies or franchise locations.

πŸ“ Note: If you want to include more than 500 franchise locations in a benchmark group, please contact us at

Franchise analysis in a benchmark group

A benchmark group has its own Analysis tools, and companies within a benchmark group also have additional options within their Analysis tools.

To learn how to use the benchmarking analysis tools in detail, please see the following articles:

This article includes tips and best practices for using the tools for a franchise.

Segment the group for better insights

You can learn more from a benchmark group by segmenting it. Segmenting the benchmark group allows you to sort the group by certain traits in the Compare tool.

You create and decide on the segments to tailor them to your franchise. For example, you could segment a group by:

  • Region, state, or city

  • Size

  • Community type (e.g. City, Suburban, Rural)

  • Product offerings

By segmenting the group, you can better understand why some franchise locations might outperform others in certain metrics.

See our 'Benchmarking segmentation' article to learn how to segment your benchmark group.

Identify best practices in the group

Using the Compare tool

Sort by Result and use the highlighting option to identify which franchise locations are top performers.

When you click on franchise locations in the Compare tool, you can highlight them. This enables you to track those locations' performance while viewing different metrics in the Compare tool.

You can easily see if a location performs well in all metrics or only a few. You can also identify locations that outperform expectations and learn best practices from them.


You are viewing the Total Revenue results in the Compare tool. You've highlighted the highest-performing locations.

Then, you switch to view the Operating Profit results and still see the locations you've highlighted.

You would expect the highlighted locations, those with the highest Revenue, also to have the highest Operating Profit. Some locations are underperforming based on expectations because they're no longer in the highest percentile for the group.

You highlight the highest-performing locations for Operating Profit and switch back to view the results for Total Revenue. Some locations in the highest Operating Profit percentile are in the 50th percentile for Total Revenue.

You can now look at these locations in more detail and identify why they outperform revenue expectations. Then, share those insights with the group.

Using the Rank tool

The Rank tool lets you see how franchise locations rank against one another over several metrics.

You can rank locations that you would expect to perform similarly (e.g. they have the same franchise owner, they're in the same city, they're of a similar size, etc.).

Then, see how the results are alike and how they differ. You can learn best practices from the location(s) with better results and share those best practices with other franchise locations.

You're able to view up to 10 locations in the Rank tool at one time.

How franchise locations can improve their performance

Franchise location owners can access a suite of Analysis tools, including the KPI Summary tool, for their franchise location.

The KPI Summary tool includes the option to view how the franchise location performs among the group for selected KPIs. The tool lists the location's median result for each KPI and displays which percentile the franchise location falls into for the group.

Seeing which percentiles their location falls into encourages franchise location owners to improve their standing within the group.

Franchise location owners can quickly identify a key underperforming metric and dive deeper into its results by clicking on the metric in the tool. They can also contact the Head Office or their financial advisor for help identifying ways to improve their performance.

To learn more about creating and selecting KPIs to display in the tool, please see our 'KPIs' article.

Consolidating franchise locations

You can quickly consolidate multiple companies or franchise locations in the same Fathom account at no additional.

Consolidating franchise locations enables owners with multiple locations to track the overall performance of all their franchise locations.

Consolidated groups also have additional reports and reporting components, which can be helpful if the Head Office wants a report of all locations. Please see this article's 'Consolidated reports for multiple locations' section to learn more.

A single-currency consolidated group can contain up to 300 companies or franchise locations. While a multi-currency consolidation can contain a maximum of 50 companies or franchise locations.

One company or franchise location can be included in multiple consolidated and benchmark groups.

Consolidated groups in a benchmark group

Consolidated groups can be included in benchmark groups.

For example, if several franchise owners have multiple locations, you can create a consolidated group for each owner.

The Head Office can have a benchmark group of all franchise locations and a benchmark group of all consolidations. This allows the Head Office to identify the top-performing locations and the top-performing franchise owners.

Alternatively, consolidated groups and individual locations can be included in the same benchmark group.

Metrics and KPIs in a franchise

While Fathom has over 50 default financial KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) to choose from, you can also create custom KPIs to track among franchise locations.

The following are the main types of custom KPIs available to use in a benchmark group:

Custom KPI Type

How a franchise might use it...

Import and track data outside of your Chart of Accounts, such as:

  • Food Waste

  • Number of Employees

  • Number of Customers

  • Number of Memberships

  • Number of Patients

  • Square Meters/Feet or Gym/Restaurant/Retail space

Track the performance of important accounts or headings at a glance, such as:

  • Cash

  • Accounts Receivable

Create custom formulas using your financial and non-financial results, such as:

  • Average Sales per Employee

  • Average Sales per Square Meter/Foot

  • Wages to Sales ratio

Fathom has some KPIs included in the KPI Library by default. You can add these KPIs to franchise locations and enter the data for them into Fathom or import the data through Google Sheets or Excel.

  • Averages Sales per Customer

  • Customer Satisfaction

  • New Customers

  • Number of Qualified Leads

  • Lost Customers

Learn more about setting up KPIs for your nonprofit organisation by seeing our 'Step 4 - KPIs' article.

Franchise groups and locations can take advantage of the following:

Sharing KPIs across franchise locations

A custom KPI must be added to the KPI Library to be shared across several franchise locations. Default KPIs are already in the KPI Library.

To share KPIs across locations, we recommend the following process:

  1. Harmonise the Charts of Accounts, if necessary

  2. Create custom KPI(s) in the Settings of one franchise location

  3. Share the custom KPIs with other franchise locations

Charts of Accounts harmonisation

How you set up custom KPIs depends on how the Chart of Accounts is set up in Fathom. Franchise locations do not need to have a standardised Chart of Accounts.

We recommend harmonising the Chart of Accounts to use custom KPIs across franchise locations. You can use headings and subheadings to harmonise the Chart of Accounts in Fathom. Then, you can use the shared heading or subheading as a variable in a custom KPI.

A dental franchise wants to measure the percentage of Revenue that goes toward Lab Fees.

They want to create a custom Formula KPI with the following formula:

(Lab Fees / Revenue) x 100

Some franchise locations have 'Lab Fees' accounts in their Charts of Accounts, and other locations have 'Laboratory Fees' as the account name.

To harmonise the Charts of Accounts, they can create a Lab Fees heading in the Charts of Accounts. In this case, they would have two versions of the Charts of Accounts.


Version 1

Lab Fees [Heading]

  • Lab Fees [Account]

Version 2

Lab Fees [Heading]

  • Laboratory Fees [Account]


Now, they can create the custom Formula KPI with the shared heading.

(Lab Fees [Heading] / Revenue) x 100

The changes you make to the Chart of Accounts for a company in Fathom do not flow back to the source accounting system. This means you can change the Chart of Accounts in Fathom without changing the Chart of Accounts in the source system. It is not possible to change account names in Fathom.

To learn more about customising the Chart of Accounts for a company in Fathom, please see our 'Chart of Accounts' article.

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: If you spend time setting up the Chart of Accounts for a franchise location and you want to use that setup across other locations, then you can copy the Chart of Accounts setup from one location to another.

If copying settings across tens of companies in a Fathom account, please contact our Support Team at We may be able to assist you.

Organise KPIs with categories

When you create a custom KPI, you can choose or create a category for it. KPI categories can be used to simply organise KPIs or direct stakeholders' attention to certain KPIs.

Example: You could have a KPI category called 'Territory Managers' and one called 'Store Managers'. The categories contain the KPIs those people should focus on.

You can only choose a category for a KPI when creating or editing it from within a company's Settings. You cannot choose or create a category for a KPI from within the KPI Library.

Adding custom KPIs to the KPI Library

When you create a custom KPI in a company's Settings, you can add it to the KPI Library. The KPI Library houses KPIs that can be shared across companies or locations in the Fathom organisation.

If the custom KPI has already been created in the company's Settings, you can edit it to add it to the library. You can also create a custom KPI from within the KPI Library.

πŸ“ Note: Only Admin-level users can access and add KPIs to the KPI Library.

To learn more about using the KPI Library, please see our 'KPI Library' article.

Copying KPIs from one location to another

Any KPIs added to the KPI Library can quickly be copied from one company to another in Fathom.

To copy KPIs:

  1. Go to the Settings for a company you have not set up KPIs in

  2. Go to the KPIs tab

  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the page

  4. Select Copy settings from another company

  5. Select the dropdown menu and type in the name of the company you want to copy KPI(s) from

  6. Ensure the KPIs option is checked

  7. Select Copy Settings

πŸ“ Note: If copying settings across tens of companies in a Fathom account, please contact our Support Team at We may be able to assist you.

Creating an Overall Performance KPI

Creating a custom Overall Performance KPI can ensure franchise members track the franchise's most critical metrics and enable the Home Office to compare franchise locations at a glance.

The Overall Performance KPI can be a weighted formula KPI.

A gym franchise knows that the following metrics are important for tracking the performance of locations in their franchise:

  1. Operating Profit Margin

  2. Revenue per Client

  3. Revenue per Square Meter

  4. Lead to Member Conversion Rate

  5. Member Retention Rate

Operating Profit Margin is a default financial KPI in Fathom. They create the other KPIs as custom KPIs in Fathom.

Once all of the above KPIs exist in Fathom, they create an Overall Performance KPI that weighs the KPIs according to their importance.

Overall Performance KPI =

(Operating Profit Margin * .4) +

(Revenue per Client * .25) +

(Revenue per Square Meter * .15) +

(Lead to Member Conversion Rate * .1) +

(Member Retention Rate * .1)

In this case, a higher result means a franchise location is performing better.

An Overall Performance KPI can frame how multiple factors influence a franchise location's performance.

From the example above, a franchise location might have a lower Overall Performance KPI result than the rest of the group.

They may have a relatively high Operating Profit Margin because they've kept expenses down. However, their Revenue per Client and Revenue per Square Meter results are lower than other locations in the group.

This franchise location owner may want to consider investing in additional services or gym equipment to increase their results in those KPIs and their Overall Performance KPI result.

To create an Overall Performance KPI:

  1. Decide which KPIs are most important to track the performance of the franchise locations
    πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: To ensure the Overall Performance KPI's results are actionable, we recommend including 5 or fewer KPIs in the calculation.

  2. Order the KPIs in terms of their importance and decide on percentage weights for them.

  3. In one of the franchise locations, create a custom formula KPI in which each KPI is multiplied by its weight and the results are summed.

    1. Overall Perfromance KPI = (KPI 1 * Weight) + (KPI 2 * Weight) + (KPI 3 * Weight), etc.

  4. Add the custom formula KPI to the KPI Library when creating the KPI

  5. Share the custom formula KPI with other franchise locations by copying KPI settings or adding it to each location in the company Settings
    πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: If the franchise locations are part of a benchmark group, add the KPI to the benchmark group's KPIs list to see the results in the benchmarking tools. It must be added to the KPI Library before being added to the benchmark group.


Each company or franchise location imported into Fathom will have access to Fathom's reporting tools.

For more general information on reporting in Fathom, please see the following articles:

Reports for franchise locations

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: Download a sample franchise location report at the bottom of this article.

Benchmark groups do not have their own Reports area of Fathom. However, if a franchise location is part of a benchmark group, additional reporting options are available, including:

  • Benchmark group reporting components

  • A benchmark results Excel report

Please see the 'Referencing benchmark group data in reports' article to learn more about the reporting options for a company in a benchmark group.


Standardise reporting for franchise locations

If you create a custom report for a franchise location in a benchmark group, you can save it as a template and share it with other franchise locations.

This enables you to use a standard report for all locations in a franchise group.

To create and share a report template,

  1. Create and customise a report from scratch or a template

  2. Share the template with the other companies in the benchmark group

Reports for the Head Office

A benchmark group does not have its own Reports area in Fathom. Instead, each company or franchise location in a benchmark group can add benchmark data to its reports.

However, there are two options for creating reports for the Head Office:

Benchmark group Excel report

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: Download a sample 'Benchmark results' Excel report at the bottom of this article.

Every company in a benchmark group has a Benchmark Results Excel report that can be downloaded.

This report details the chosen period’s KPI and financial metric results for all companies in the benchmark group and the 25th percentile, the 75th percentile, and the median for each metric.

πŸ“ Note: If company names are hidden in the benchmark group's Privacy Settings, then users can only see the names of the companies they can access. All other company names will be anonymised in the report.

To download this report,

  1. Go to Reports for a location in the benchmark group

  2. Select Excel reports from the left sidebar

  3. Click the Cloud icon for the 'Benchmark results' report

  4. Choose the reporting period for the report

  5. Select Download report

Consolidated reports for multiple locations

πŸ’‘ Pro Tip: Download a sample consolidated report for a franchise group at the bottom of this article.

Consolidated groups have their own Reports area, unlike benchmark groups.

You can create a consolidated group that includes the companies in your benchmark group or a portion of your benchmark group. Consolidated groups are no additional cost in Fathom.

Benchmark groups can include up to 500 companies, while single-currency consolidations can include up to 300. A multi-currency consolidation can consist of a maximum of 50 companies.

If you have a benchmark group with more companies than is allowed in a consolidated group, you can create more than one consolidated group.

Example: A franchise has locations in three states in the United States. The financial advisor has created a consolidated group for each state (e.g. Washington, Oregon, and California).

They can create a report for each consolidated group that includes the results for all companies in the consolidated group.

See the 'Consolidated Group Reporting' article to learn about the reporting options available for consolidated groups.

Sharing access

A Fathom account can have unlimited users, so franchisee owners can be invited to access their data in Fathom and gain insights. You can grant them access to only their franchise location(s), as well as a benchmark group.

In addition to choosing a role for each user, you can further tailor access with advanced user permissions. You can choose which analysis tools and areas of reporting and forecasting are available for each user.

For example, a franchise owner could be given access to the analysis tools and reports for their location but only published reports.

Benchmark group permissions

If you create a benchmark group, only users invited to the group can access benchmark data in the analysis tools and add it to reports. The group also has additional Privacy and KPI settings.

If you turn on 'Hide company names' for the group, a franchise location owner can identify their franchise location by name in the Compare and Rank tools. All other locations will have their names hidden (e.g., Company 1, Company 2, Company 3, etc.).

In the KPI settings for the group, you can grant permission for Admin or Editor-level users to view all KPIs in the Compare and Rank tools for the group. If these options are unchecked, they can only view KPI results for the KPIs added to the benchmark group in the KPIs settings.

Additional knowledge & common questions

Sample reports

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