WASHINGTON — The International Franchise Association (IFA) is backing the Trump administration's "Pledge to America's Workers" — a year-old program designed to expand programs that educate, train and reskill American workers — with a pledge of its own to hire, train or "upskill" more than 250,000 workers over the next five years through its member brands and their franchise owners.
"This pledge highlights the franchise sector's commitment to hiring, training and upskilling American workers," IFA President and CEO Robert Cresanti said.
"America's locally owned franchise businesses are one of our country's largest job-training programs," he said. "Millions of Americans learned the foundational skills for successful careers in franchise businesses of all types.
"Thanks to the Trump administration's commitment to improve the lives of all working Americans by increasing pay and reducing burdensome regulations, with this commitment, IFA through our member companies will work to enhance career opportunities for 250,000 American workers."
Franchise businesses already work to train new employees on both basic business skills and the franchisor brand's proprietary business systems and products, IFA said.
It noted that the various franchise brands' training programs include work on "soft" skills that are missing in most education programs, such as communications, multitasking, teamwork, basic technology capabilities, personal accountability, sales and/or customer service.
IFA's pledge reflects the association's support of the Department of Labor's efforts to recognize the importance of apprenticeship programs for the American workforce.
Labor announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking earlier this year that would establish a process for the department to advance the development of high-quality, industry-recognized apprenticeship programs.
"America's 733,000 franchise businesses build skills and develop careers across our country," Matt Haller, IFA's senior vice president of government relations and public policy, said.
"IFA welcomes the administration's actions to promote apprenticeships and looks forward to working together to help train American workers across industries for the jobs of today and tomorrow."
Labor also announced awards totaling $183.8 million to support the development and expansion of apprenticeships for educational institutions partnering with companies that provide a funding match component.