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Linking 'Soft' Management Skills with Hard Data for a Compelling Business Case at Jack in the Box

August 2, 2012

Linking people metrics with business metrics
(ACE): Alignment Capabilities Engagement
In a recent case study for SHRM’s HR Magazine, Mark Blankenship, Senior VP of Jack in the Box in San Diego,  reveals the formula the restaurant chain used to quantify employee engagement and link HR data to corporate financial objectives.
Blankenship talks about a revolutionary change in HR strategy for the organization.

It was interesting to me that HR professionals never helped connect the “people” data to the financial and operational data, says Blankenship

When the organization began to collect the data and apply it to business metrics, the results were compelling.

The data revealed that restaurants with happier employees had happier guests and higher sales and profits…At that moment, we were starting to speak the language of the business through the data and process.

Jack-in-the-box was able to demonstrate that employee satisfaction has a direct impact on business success.  They termed the restaurants with high scores in all 3 dimensions = “Optimized” in People Equity.
Their analysis revealed that “Optimized” restaurants have:

• 21% lower turnover
• 5% higher overall guest satisfaction
• 10% higher sales
• 30% higher profits

Jack-in-the-box developed a scorecard for Optimized People Equity that measured Alignment, Capabilities, and Engagement (ACE).  They discovered that employee satisfaction was based on good scores in the following areas:

• Communication
• Feedback
• Interpersonal treatment
• Leadership
• Physical environment
• Rewards and recognition
• Staffing
• Training and development


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