McCulloch doesn’t hesitate calling it a “game-changer” for Chipotle. It’s allowed the brand to focus on the guest experience and divert its resources to customers, not paperwork.
Emily Kucera, Chipotle’s community roots coordinator, says its rewritten the guest-brand relationship as well. Instead of the back-and-forth tax discussion, now it’s a back-and-forth chat “with a face and a name from the coach that we helped get new uniforms,” she says.
“It’s just wonderful to hear the success stories and actually have that partnership, not only on a fundraising level, but also a personalized thank-you-for-what-we-did level. It’s amazing to see on the local level that a corporation can make such a big difference.”
When you talk about a chain with 2,000-plus units, this kind of grassroots impact is critical, Kucera adds. Hosting large, national campaigns with top-level non-profits is one thing. Having the local PTA send over a thank-you letter is another.
“It’s a perk of course when they come in and send us a thank you of, ‘Hey we’ll be back, we love the food.’ But the bottom line, especially just of our own team and our own course of action, is just making sure we actually help them fundraise the money they need to get the things they need to do through the fundraising,” she says.
Cook says the software is still evolving. New features in 2018 include self-serve fundraiser rescheduling, automatic organization tax state verification, and self-serve promotional flyers. The app refresh removes ambiguity for non-profit organizations by answering questions and shepherding organizations through otherwise confusing tax and logistical processes.
Another benefit, McCulloch says, is the instant gratification of the system, which is far more effective than waiting to have a call returned.
“Similar to anything else that’s on demand, online these days, people don’t want ambiguity on it,” he says. “They want an answer right now. And if something is available or not, and this gave us that option. … I wish it was as easy as opening the cash register drawer at the end of the night and handing them some cash, but unfortunately with the government paperwork and everything else that goes with it, all of the compliance on these things, it’s really important that we dot our eyes and cross our ts, and this allows us to do it in a way that’s faster and captures the information more accurately than ever before.”