papa johns

How a Papa John’s Franchise Owner Uses Hive to Manage Operations Across More Than 80 Store Locations

Preston House first began his career by purchasing a single Papa John’s franchise in 2005, and then taking over 3 struggling locations in Boise, ID in 2006. Fast forward to 2022, and Preston has now co-founded a company called Your Best Brands, which owns over 90 food franchises across ten states, including more than 80 – and counting – Papa John’s stores

The company’s structure and management are key to its success. General Managers running the stores report to a Director of Operations (DO). The DO oversees a number of regional locations and reports to one of four Vice Presidents (VP) of Operations. They in turn report to a President of Operations. 

Having such an extensive network of franchises means that Preston and his Your Best Brands leadership team need to know the status of projects at a glance – this is where Hive comes in. The company’s Operations, Human Resources (HR), Payroll, Marketing, and Finance teams all use Hive to streamline, organize and oversee their day-to-day work and wider responsibilities. 

How Your Best Brands worked before Hive

Before adopting Hive as its project management (PM) software, the company relied on various collaboration tools, including G-Suite for email, calendar and file storage. 

“It wasn’t super-effective, particularly when we were managing acquisitions,” says Preston.  When we made an acquisition before Hive, there would just be a shared Google Sheet, including who was assigned a task, the due date, and updates. That wasn’t an ideal scenario.”

We adopted Hive because we wanted to be more productive and effective. We also use Hive to increase accountability, visibility and communication across the company. – Preston House 

Preston was keen to streamline the company’s approach and enhance visibility and communication. “Previously there wasn’t a way for one department to know whether another department was working on a project. Hive has eliminated these kinds of problems. Using Hive, we have all the information to hand in just one tool, so we have great visibility over all our projects.”

Now the company is using Hive, it’s much easier to manage and oversee the different steps involved in any given project – whether it’s as complex as an acquisition, or as simple as updating a uniform in a single store location. With Hive, Your Best Brands can assign tasks and enjoy complete visibility over projects, actions, and deadlines. Teams can clearly see their own responsibilities and actions, while managers can oversee and monitor progress in just a few clicks.

How Your Best Brands templatizes repeat business operations

Using Hive templates, Your Best Brands is able to save time when building out new projects that occur frequently and often follow the same series of steps. 

“The very first project that we ever built in Hive was to arrange our annual retreat,” Preston explains. But now, Your Best Brands utilizes project templates for a wide range of business functions including store remodels, finance plans, ordering uniforms, and HR processes such as onboarding and off-boarding staff. 

Papa Johns template

There’s even a template for menu price changes so that Preston and his team can quickly roll out changes to locations. The company also has templates for more complex business processes like acquiring an existing franchise or building a new store location. 

When we build a new Papa John’s location, we just plug that project template in, and it automatically assigns everyone to different tasks they are responsible for. – Preston House

To organize all of these projects, Your Best Brands has implemented a project naming structure so everyone can see at a glance which department owns a particular project and what it relates to – just from the project title itself. 

How Your Best Brands communicates across all franchise locations 

While the General Manager of each individual Papa John’s franchise is not in Hive, their Director of Operations (who are Your Best Brand employees) are responsible for inputting requests or to-dos as action cards within Hive. This is how store-level needs are brought to Your Best Brands leaders at an operational level. 

Internally, Your Best Brands uses the Hive chat function to cut back on unnecessary emails. Although they still communicate via email with General Managers, contractors and other external partners, Preston says his goal is to bring those external emails into Hive by linking them to action cards. This keeps all relevant information in one place. 

Papa Johns Mail in action card

For example, if Your Best Brands is emailing with a store landlord about rent payments, they can attach the email thread to the corresponding action card in Hive.

Your Best Brands runs a news feed for the entire organization within Hive, so staff can be updated instantly on significant developments, for example, when someone new joins.

How Hive helps the Your Best Brands leadership track and run operations 

Hive Forms help the company’s leadership team understand when employees need their help or approval for something. “For example, we have an equipment inventory order list, which covers anything from ordering a new uniform for a team member to a store credit card,” Preston explains. 

They also have an intake Form, so when the Risk Management Department sets up a new lease for a new location, the intake Form goes over to Finance to ensure that they have all the information they need. Customer service also uses Hive Forms for refund requests. 

Preston adds that he has built a specific leadership project within Hive so that he can get a clear picture of what his Chief Financial Officer, Chief Administrative Officer, VP of Marketing and others on the leadership team are working on. In that one project view, Preston can understand the status of each individual’s work, check what they are behind on, and monitor overall progress. 

A productive & accountable future

At Your Best Brands, the Hive culture has been embraced at all operation levels, with major buy-in from the top, Preston himself. So how does Preston summarize the value of Hive to his organization?

I see two key benefits to using Hive: accountability and productivity. – Preston House

“Being more organized and having everything in one place, instead of split across multiple platforms, is a huge plus for us,” Preston shares. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for Preston and the Your Best Brands team! 

???? Are you looking for a project management system to help you handle your everyday workload? Hive is a user-friendly system with a wide range of timesaving, customizable functions. Try Hive free for 14 days and see why organizations are getting excited! Find out how to migrate your projects seamlessly from your existing project management system into Hive with our handy guide.