J. Jill ($JILL) is not having a great day today, as the women's clothing retailer saw its CEO resign and shares plummeted 27% this morning. Linda Heasley leaving was only the salt in the wound, as it turns out, since at its third-quarter earnings the company also announced a big earnings miss. What happened to the brand? We go to the data to find our answer.
For a while, J. Jill was hiring at a steady increase, despite the stock price dropping a few bucks twice over the last year or so. It wasn't until July where we saw that number start to go down, and since the summer the headcount has finally started to drop. But since the start of the year, the number of employees we tracked on LinkedIn has actually gone up 3%.
We can see that the job openings just haven't been there. It's at an all-time low, for the corporate positions on J. Jill's website, and this morning's news of executive shuffling might explain some of that. Since March, non-retail job listings have been cut by 60%.
Despite all of this, the number of J. Jill stores just keeps going up, which is a bold play. Since March of this year, the number of stores went up 9% worldwide. We'll see if any of these figures change dramatically following the change in leadership - if J.Jill's share plunge continues, it isn't likely to maintain its big real estate footprint much longer.
About the Data:
Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales.