Will Swan is the human resources director for a Chick-fil-A location in Athens, Georgia. While Chick-fil-A has a reputation for building a great culture that fosters a second-to-none customer service experience, the brand’s storefronts have not been immune from the labor crunch that’s affected the foodservice industry since the outset of the pandemic.
Swan knows as well as anyone that advertising a job listing, wading through candidates, and finally interviewing and onboarding them can be a time-intensive process. Recently, his Chick-fil-A location decided to be more deliberate about how they source, screen, and hire new team members.
“Ideally, we would like to host as few interviews as possible and allocate our time as wisely as possible while still hiring the same number of great folks,” Swan says. “We can then invest the extra time and money toward developing our leaders, focusing on the experience of the customer and other more valuable things.”
This particular Chick-fil-A location recently started using Sprockets, a software geared toward helping quick-service brands find and hire the right employees. Unlike some competitors, Sprockets is interested in the quality of candidates rather than quantity. It uses an AI-driven algorithm to identify ideal candidates based on candidates’ responses to a three-question survey.
In that way, Sprockets is a beautifully simplistic tool—but it’s also a tool that produces very real results. Consider the location that Swan works at in Athens, which now reports a hiring success rate between 70 and 75 percent. According to Swan, that figure is based on tracking new hires through a six-month period, and asking at the end: “Knowing what we do now, should we have hired this person?”
The reason Sprockets is so effective for Swan and his team is because of its work on the front end, screening candidates so that Swan and his team don’t have to. That gives them confidence that when an applicant is passed along, there’s a strong chance they will have the right values, personality, and attitude to fit in with the rest of the team.
“The money spent on the service is an investment that more than pays for itself as we conduct fewer bad interviews,” Swan says. “Sprockets has also helped with retention as we are able to hire the right people and keep them, and by extension, keep the awesome people that we already have as new hires are not coming in and upsetting the existing culture and driving our best people away.”
With hiring and retention less of a concern, Swan and his team can get back to what they do best, like deploying team members to places where they will be successful and facilitating an exceptional customer experience. Loyal guests will feel right at home when a friendly new face is the one saying, “my pleasure.”
“Sprockets really offers a great return on investment,” Swan says. “If your time and money in the realm of interviewing and hiring are both valuable to you, then Sprockets is a tool that can help improve your stewardship and your results.”
For more information on how to hire the right employees, visit the Sprockets website.