Webinar Hosted by Jamba Owners

Hosted by Geoff Henry, President of Jamba and Desmond Lim, CEO of Workstream



Introduction by Geoff

  • Introduce Jeff, Panos and Tara who will be sharing about the experience of working with Workstream
  • Understand the difficulty of hiring and attracting the right talent
  • Looking to have preferred vendors for Jamba franchise owners to work with that can provide attractive services and value


Introduction by Desmond

  • Previously a restaurant owner himself so he understands the pain points in hiring great talent in the industry
  • This motivated him to build Workstream 


Jeff’s experience with Workstream

  • Started using Workstram in two districts to compare with their current system (TalentReef) but going to convert all of his stores (95 stores) over to Workstream this year
  • #1 reason for choosing Workstream:
    • Found Workstream simple and very easy to use - ease of use from managers and district managers, easy to review applicants, communicate with applicants and majority of the communication happens by text (important for their applicant talent pool)
    • Able to schedule interviews, communicate with applicants about job decisions all via texts - helps to save a ton of time because hiring managers don’t have to be on the phone and it can get really difficult for them to find time to answer phones and talk to applicants etc. Hence, this translates to dollar savings
    • Saw a reduction in no-shows from interviews due to the ability to keep applicants engaged with the ease of communicating back and forth - harder for applicants to blow it off or decide not to come in for the interview with the human connection developed with HR managers
    • Generally found that there’s a greater applicant turnout and save time on hiring events
  • #2 reason for choosing Workstream
    • Helps facilitate the flow of conversation with potential candidates who enquire via walk-ins to text messaging especially in times of the pandemic and keep the applicant flow going
  • #3 reason for choosing Workstream
    • Currently using TalentReef which post to Indeed, Glassdoor and Google
    • Able to post to five other job boards and even the expensive ones like ZipRecruiter to look for management candidates
    • Overall, Workstream price is more favorable when compared as a whole 
  • Personally learnt a lot from Desmond and felt that Workstream is forward-looking from a technology perspective which allows for constant improvement to help recruit faster and smarter


Tara’s experience with Workstream

  • Have been working with Workstream for more than a year now (one of the first Workstream’s client)
  • Rolled it out to all Jamba and Pieology stores, currently in the midst of rolling out to Carl’s Jr.
  • Make use of Workstream to touch do as much of the manager’s job as possible before the manager interviews the candidate 
  • Shared an example of how last year when she started using Workstream, one of her managers in Utah sent her a picture of a person with their feet up on  beach saying “this is me on Workstream because hiring is a dream and I don’t have anything to do right now”
  • Due to COVID-19, they are updating their hiring process on Workstream (and that’s the great thing about Workstream, you’re able to change any little thing you want)
  • Workstream allows hiring managers to set up automated messaging so it appears that they are communicating with the candidates directly when in actuality, they are doing something else - helps us from losing great candidates because most good candidates are going to take the first job they are offered and Workstream helps to keep these great candidates engaged
  • Hiring managers can go through their pool of applicants and with one click of a button, send them to the phone interview stage which means they get the automated message and all of that without the manager having to do one the back and forth communication of merely finding a date that the candidate can come in for an interview
  • Able to add more screening questions for different roles such as shift leads so that Workstream can automatically filter out those with no experience without having hiring managers spend time to speak to them only to realize that they are not qualified. Able to set up the hiring process whereby those who applied for shift leads without experience can be prompted to apply as a team member instead
  • Recently added our favorite new feature, a 30-second video snippet, asking people to upload a video introduction of themselves and why they want to work at Jamba - managers interview these people the fastest and currently considering to make it a requirement for the places that have a hard time hiring because it’s almost as good as an interview as you can see the way they carry themselves
  • Before Workstream, managers were using personal cell phones to text applicants back and forth manually since emailing is pretty outdated - as such, there’s no line-of-sight as well
  • With Workstream, district managers and owners can have oversight to the entire hiring process and even down to seeing each message in the hiring process
  • Able to boost on job boards like Indeed to get significantly more applicants without having to go onto Indeed to do so
  • Recommends investing time to go through Workstream as an applicant to tweak it to make the hiring process work for you so that you can save a lot of time moving forwards
  • You can even continue to hire even when you don’t need people because it’s automated, so you can have a pool of great applications to choose from when someone leaves the team
  • Workstream team has also been super helpful and receptive to feedback, been constantly adding on new features to cater to us better  


Panos’ experience with Workstream

  • Been using Workstream for about a year and a half now 
  • Implementing the onboarding processes in all of our stores (39 stores)
  • Workstream’s onboarding feature is all virtual and you can upload all your new hire paperwork, handbooks and everything will be stored in the portal and sent out via cell phone
  • Team members can just click a link if they pass the on-site interview and they can go through all the onboarding documents before they even show up at the store for orientation
  • (Shows images of the cell phone and the interaction between GMs and team members and the seamless process)
  • Cost savings - It takes about two and a half hours out of the process from the screening of the applications to the GM's time to the cutting back the orientation and doing the paperwork in-house and that translates to about $45 per candidate and if we're projecting to hire about 200 candidates this coming year, that's about a $9000 savings and the larger your organization the larger the savings is going to be 
  • Helps get quality candidates and reduce turnover and savings is all across from interviewing to the final stage when they come in for orientation
  • Customer service is by far the best in the industry


WOTC.com and Workstream Integration (by Lydia)

  • Integrates with WOTC.com so that you can claim for pretty much every new hire and people who qualify easily
  • If you don't add any screening questions to identify people upfront, the average saving in general just by submitting to the IRS the WOTC stuff for Food and Beverage is $62,000 for every 100 hires that you have and these are Tax Credits that you can apply anytime in the next 20 years 
  • If you aren't profitable this year you can apply them next year and depending on how your company is set up if it's an LLC, it's also something that the owners can claim these Tax Credits personally
  •  For 10 hires, you can expect $62,000 in savings. We can actually 5x that by having screening questions to identify people who will qualify for WOTC upfront 
  • If you hire somebody who received unemployment benefits before you hired them, you can claim $2400 in Tax Credits
  • If you hire somebody who has a person in their family that doesn't even have to be them who is receiving food stamps, you can claim $2400 in Tax Credit
  • If you have somebody or their family members  on TANF which is also known as welfare, you can claim $9,000 in Tax Credits for that new-hire
  • There’s usually a 28-day window to file for this, there’s an extension right now to July 15th
  • When somebody is onboarded they're just filling out an 8850 form that is part of Workstream’s standard onboarding process, submit that plus some additional documents within the 28 days. Those additional documents are why we integrated with WOTC.com 
  • Through our integration we'll do all that work for you 
  • WOTC doesn’t mean you’re practicing discrimation in hiring - WOTC was created to incentivize employers to hire somebody who has experienced barriers of entry into gaining employment
  • By asking screening questions before the interview stage, you can identify those eligible for the tax credits 


Q: Is there the ability to integrate one’s own WOTC Tax Credit form into Workstream’s hire process instead of using WOTC.com’s offerings?

Lydia: Yes you can also do that. If you have the option of either using a tax professional and paying an hourly versus paying a percentage of what you get as tax credits, we've seen that in the percentage, people push harder to get this additional information. But you have the option and we can add the screening questions, with the screening questions they're pulled directly from the actual WOTC things so that prevents you from being discriminatory in your hiring practice. If you decide to just independently separate from Workstream that's also completely fine, I would just recommend to separate out the questions about are you an ex-felon or are you in the military from questions like are you receiving unemployment benefits and are you receiving TANF or SNAP so that people will actually check them if they are doing that versus as soon as they see ex-felon in the same question people just don't check anything so that's just a tip in general. 


Q: How to implement the optional 30 second video for applicants? 

Tara: Yeah we just added a question at the end of our screening questions. It basically says we would love to meet you using your device please send us a short video 30 seconds or less letting us know more about you and why you want to work at Jamba. This is optional but appreciated and we used a file upload so they just have to take it on their phone and upload it and again, liability things we talked to the managers, we said when you download it and you watch it, past the download you delete it after that point but so far it's not been not been any problems there. I think Desmond you guys are probably working towards some other integrations where hopefully it won't be an upload and then download in the future but that was kind of the quickest way for us to get this going for now. 


Q: How have other Jambas coped with a lack of on-site interviews? 

Panos: We still bring people in for a live interview once we've gone through all the stages.

Tara: We added the phone interview as a step but we still need them to come in, you still have to see them in person.

Jeff: Same for us. We do a lot of the interviews outside right where it feels I think a little bit more comfortable for everybody, but it's still a really important part of the process for us.


Q: How are you tracking your cost savings? 

Panos: Well I can answer that. There's no real scientific basis behind it except just through about 100 applicants that we have brought onboard using the Workstream onboarding part of the app, we've been talking to the TSM's we've summarized that their savings at all levels from the interview process to how much time it takes to screen all the way to doing the paperwork remotely before they show up for,  let's say the interview or before they get hired for the onboarding piece. All that savings from the GM time to the team member time savings not coming to the store to do the paperwork, we kind of blended that together and got our own rate of about $45 in Arizona. It's probably a little bit less in California because there's different laws and regulations and different states that you have to conform to, but that was our own internal figure and what we've talked about and kind of came down to the wire it's about $45 in Arizona for a candidate.


Q: What do you rank as the most important feature of Workstream for you and what would like to see us really double down on and improve for you.

Jeff: I won’t try to rank them but I would do an overarching statement. I measure the success by this, a good portion of it by how happy my GM's are. A GM's job right now is a complex job, it's a challenging job and when they tell me that something we're providing them is saving them time, is making it easier for them to do those jobs, it's making it easier for them to find team members, it's making it easier for them to retain team members, it's hard to put a number on that but I consider that sentiment from my general managers to be priceless so I put general managers satisfaction at the top of my list.

Tara: I would echo that, I think that there's very few things and there's a lot of times we'll roll out things for the sake of our office or our price or our profit or something. There's very few things we roll out that the managers are ecstatic about and this was definitely one of them. So I think that the interview process which encompasses all of that time saving, cost savings, better hires that's all encompassed in getting them to that interview process and keeping them in the interview process. But yeah overall our team just they like it. Sometimes it takes a little nudging, sometimes they are hesitant, they're used to doing things a certain way but when you encourage them that this is really going to be easier for them in the end. I haven't had one come back to me and say now I actually want to go back to the other way but it's very good for them.

Jeff: I want to echo what Tara is saying there, it's really interesting you'd think that adopting technology would be really simple and easy just automatically but people do tend to fall back on what they're used to and so this does require some training and some a little bit of a nudge to adopt but to Tara’s point, once they adopted they're not going to go back.

Panos: Yeah it's really easily adopted by GMs and it's very intuitive I would say and if the GM's are happy like what Jeff and Tara said, we're happy. Because at the end of the day, they have a really tough job to do and any time you turn around lately there's something else going on. We have to close, reopen but the quality of the candidates and the fact that we're actually getting candidates in some markets through Workstream where we couldn't get candidates before. I think it opens it up to a whole new level. GMs would get frustrated with not being able to get quality candidates or any kind of candidates walking in through the door, this has increased the applicant pool and the quality and I think although we haven't measured the retention of the of the candidate that we do actually bring onboard, but the texting piece has been a godsend. I mean I've heard over and over again how intuitive it is and how easy it is has made their life so much more easier so the GMs love that piece.

Tara: You might think like oh they have to be logged in on Workstream or they have to be on their phone or something. What's beautiful about this is they can reply to an email so a candidate can text “Hey I can't make it today can i reschedule?” and the manager who might still be used to using email a lot and that's doing paperwork or whatever trying to reply to the email and it will text the candidate back. So it really flows between email and text which enables people to work the best way that they can. They can also not have to sit on the front line on their cell phone all the time.

Panos: Yeah it saves a ton of time, you can set up interview time slots and you can set up when the GM is available on the app to interview on during the same time, during the same day every week and then the interview. After you go through that, they can plug in their own interview times and it's kind of really cool. Yeah it's truly latest and the greatest.


Q: Have there been any hiccups with applicants filling out applications on Workstream well let an applicant submit an application if it's not fully filled out and if so does Workstream flag the application as incomplete?

Tara:  Yes, there have been hiccups but I think because part of this is that you really build your own application so I want to reiterate that part to you as you build what works for you. But you could also use their template and so we've chosen to have multiple stages for that reason so that if they don't go through stage one then you're not really going to have them. Stage one is like the first couple questions you need, then we put a little bit and then we let them fill out a lot more with their availability and we kind of walk them through it so you do still see their information. If they get stuck and they don't go, there's automation to say hey if they've been here for a couple of days and they haven't filled this out what do you want me to do with them so again you really have to handhold the whole process, you might decide to send them a reminder you might decide that your best friend you're just going to move them right onto the phone interview, but I feel like we don't lose any candidates we just have to get in there and find out you know where they are. 


Q: Were there any game changers when you add this to Workstream and it made a big difference for your managers?

Panos: The game changer really was how intuitive the app was. Initially there were some bugs as we kind of worked out the process but the game changer for my team was the savings in time and energy and how intuitive it really is. It's extremely intuitive.

Tara: As far as adding something for us, it was adding the requirement of flowing through to an interview, so it's kind of what we do again we did it almost everywhere. Prior to COVID we had to shift a little bit right now but we still are doing it for all of our shift manager positions because we feel like I don't care who you are, you better be interviewing qualified shift managers all the time right now. We don't have in our areas, we don't have an abundance of those so it really made our managers keep hiring top of mind because they had to have their calendar in there and they had to open to doing interviews otherwise the people would get to that point and they get stuck and they'd be messaging them hey I can't set up an interview it's sending me the automatic reminders so it was really our way of making sure our managers were doing what we wanted them to be doing every time. Once we figured out to do the automatic flow through to interviews and not give them an option where we needed to, that was pretty much a game changer for us.


Q: Are you using a zoom or another video interview way right now when they get to the interview stage?

Tara: We're not yet because we just didn't have the whole corporate thing set up so that's why we added the video and then we're just letting them decide whether or not they're doing zoom on their own I don't know or FaceTime or whatever. But I think most of them are just calling them, doing a quick interview and then moving them to the on-site interview stage which then again sets up that whole calendar, lets them pick their time come in remind them and process that whole so because we're doing two types of interviews now it's even more benefit to having both have reminders and ability to cancel and all that kind of stuff built in.


Q: How much would you guys say that ghosting has gone down since you implemented Workstream?

Tara: I don’t think I could put a number on that. We have quite a bit before this but I just thought of another big benefit that we didn’t mention. Workstream has an automatic email in the morning for that day's interviews and so a lot of times they'll forget that they scheduled interviews or someone will schedule it like late at night. So our team looks for that interview in the morning to remind them of all their appointments for the day. I think that's a big benefit for them. They have somewhere to message at the last minute and say hey sorry I can't make it and they're more likely to do that so it but it has helped.


For more in-depth discussions with industry leaders and business owners, check out our other Workstream webinars. To see how Workstream can help your business adapt to the current crisis, click here to schedule a demo