Starbucks Productivity: Revenue Per Employee

In an employee-intensive industry, say fastfood, getting the most out of each worker is crucial. Sure, under most state and federal laws, part-time workers aren’t owed health insurance and neither are they collecting 401(k) matches and the like. But each body carries with it a cost, and hiring and training are among the big ones in a business with wretched turnover.

So it’s instructive to see – and comforting if you’re a Starbucks (SBUX) shareholder – the revenue-per-employee figures for the leading fast food operators, including Yum (YUM), McDonald’s (MCD) and Chipotle (CMG).

YUM Annual Revenue Per Employee Chart

YUM Annual Revenue Per Employee data by YCharts

Those baristas really are productive, eh? Yes, yes, we’re comparing apples to burritos and lattes here, I realize. Full-time-equivalents would be more meaningful, though sadly that isn’t a stat public companies are required to cough up, while total employees, blessedly, is. Yum has many workers in China and they’re likely less-expensive to employ that those stateside, and thus a lower sales-per-employee count isn’t as ruinous as it might seem.

YUM Profit Margin Quarterly Chart

YUM Profit Margin Quarterly data by YCharts

McDonald’s profit margin, by the way, is higher in large part because it franchises so many of its outlets, getting royalty fees from franchisees, which fall harder to the bottom line, than sales of hamburgers with all the attendant costs.

We’ve recently added employee counts – and ratios built off of them – as YCharts metrics and not a moment too soon. As the economy continues to slowly recover and companies add workers, you’ll have the opportunity to assess the return on investment these additional workers represent over time.

We’ve always been a fan of the revenue-per-employee metric, writing about Amazon’s (AMZN) surprising decline in this area, as the online retailer continues its hiring binge. We’ve also used the metric to help explain the gruesome management task at worker-heavy companies like R.R. Donnelley & Sons (RRD).

Starbucks has been impressive in recent years as it makes each outlet more productive, and that has shown up in compounded increases in same-store sales. A broader product lineup helps, and there are undoubtedly a few more baristas and other workers behind each counter. But the back-to-basics management approach adopted by CEO Howard Schultz when he returned to run the company, which is straight out of the playbook of former McDonald’s CEO Jim Skinner, is most certainly making each worker more productive. Notice impressive rise in the first chart for Starbucks?

Jeff Bailey, The Editor of YCharts, is a former reporter, editor and columnist at the Wall Street Journal and New York Times. He can be reached at editor@ycharts.com. Read the RIABiz profile of YCharts. You can also request a demonstration of YCharts Platinum.

Most Viewed

  • Sunny Leone does a Zeenat Aman; wears transparent saree!
    Sunny Leone does a Zeenat Aman; wears transparent saree!

    T-series' upcoming film EK PAHELI LEELA has been creating buzz for quite some time now. …

  • Age gracefully, don't cover the lines: Kareena Kapoor
    Age gracefully, don't cover the lines: Kareena Kapoor

    New Delhi, Feb 27 (IANS) Bollywood's fit and fabulous Kareena Kapoor is on her way to turn 35, and she's clear about not attempting to be 22! She feels the key to ageing gracefully lies in letting the "lines" be, especially when it comes to men. I hate it when I look at somebody and know that they have tried to cover the lines," Kareena told IANS in an interview on a recent visit to the capital. Looking svelte in a golden shimmering gown, exuding a rare glow and charm, Kareena shared her …

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Dum Laga Ke Haisha
    Yahoo Movies Review: Dum Laga Ke Haisha

    Dum Laga Ke Haisha continuously makes you smile. This is a film with a big heart and you’ll also love watching this one for the kind of nostalgia it evokes. …

  • Alia Bhatt Finally Reveals Her Relationship With Sidharth Malhotra
    Alia Bhatt Finally Reveals Her Relationship With Sidharth Malhotra

    Sidharth Malhotra and Alia Bhatt are the new and much talked couple in the Bollywood. Recently at the launch of a show actor Sidharth Malhotra caught the photographer and asked him to give his camera. He started taking Alia Bhatt’s picture. On this situation during the music awards event, Alia Bhatt was questioned about the on going relationship with Sidharth as she has been spotted with him at different events and places together. …

  • Snapped: Deepika Padukone At Friends Wedding In Delhi
    Snapped: Deepika Padukone At Friends Wedding In Delhi

    Bollywood diva Deepika Padukone has been busy with back-to-back shootings of her upcoming films. Between all the hassles, Deepika took time out to attend her best friend’s wedding in the capital city, where she has been shooting since a while with co-star Ranbir Kapoor. Deepika Padukone had donned a Sabyasachi pink saree with elegant jewellery that finished her look. …

  • What’s Up? Karishma Tanna And Upen Patel Meeting Each Others Family
    What’s Up? Karishma Tanna And Upen Patel Meeting Each Others Family

    Romantic date was not just inside the Bigg Boss 8 house for the romantic couple Karishma Tanna and Upen Patel. As named by Farah Khan, UPMA celebrated Valentine’s Day together with a classy dinner date. Not just this, Karishma also took Upen to her house to meet her mother. From the time they both have got out of Bigg Boss house, the duo are spending time together with their friends and were also spotted at parties and events. …

  • Brit Awards tumble leaves Madonna with 'little bit of a whiplash'
    Brit Awards tumble leaves Madonna with 'little bit of a whiplash'

    Madonna said she suffered whiplash when she was pulled by her cape causing her to fall and hit her head during a performance at the Brit Awards this week. "I had a little bit of a whiplash and I smacked the back of my head, so there was a man standing over me with a flashlight until about 3 a.m. making sure that I was still conscious," Madonna said in an episode of the show that will air on March 14. A little dazed, Madonna rose to her feet before finishing the song. "I didn't hurt my butt, …

  • Ab Tak Chhappan 2 Movie Review
    Ab Tak Chhappan 2 Movie Review

    AB TAK CHAPPAN 2 is an 80s plot with a 90s twist with director Aejaz Gulab trying to give it a current flavor. It doesn't work. Nana Patekar is at his blistering best... …

Loading...