Guiding veterans into business operation has been the aim of the IFA from the start of its Veterans Transition Program that began 23 years ago. Since the program started, the number of military vets entering franchising has developed even more widely, with over 150,000 veterans having stepped into the industry since 2011.
The incentives that veterans receive are becoming more widespread as numbers of franchise businesses aim to make their systems more accessible to those looking to transition into a business management position. The primary aim of the IFA’s program is to benefit the lives of many in need of support during an especially complex period. Returning to a civilian way of life and looking for the right career opportunity are a key life focus for veterans as they transition and franchising offers plenty of resources and incentives to help facilitate that move.
In light of this program, The Center for Association Leadership awarded a 2014 ASAE "Power of A" Gold Award to the IFA to better proclaim the positive impact of the program in the lives of veterans. Ten years following the start of this effort, the IFA once again stepped up its attempts to support veterans with another initiative to increase veteran involvement in the franchise industry. Operation Enduring Opportunity started in 2011 with the aim of recruiting at least 80,000 veterans, wounded warriors, and military spouses into franchise industry positions. As mentioned from the start, this figure was surpassed by over 70,000 individuals, with at least 5,000 of them setting up as franchise business operators since 2011.
The aim of the ASAE award is to highlight the efforts of associations to create innovative solutions to challenges faced by many in a wide range of sectors and backgrounds. The awards recognize industries of all types, including neuroscience, clean water agencies, museums, and ski and snowboarding education associations, to name a few. IFA’s inclusion as a recipient of the "Power of A" Gold Award reveals the real beneficial impact that franchise industry support efforts are currently having on the lives of veterans, as well as the promising impact that will continue to develop for the over one million military veterans projected to transition over the next five years.