Starbucks' global pullback in light of the pandemic has been measurable since the crisis' early stages in China - but now, as it prepares for earnings on April 29, data hasn't shown steep drop-offs in hiring. 

A few weeks ago, Starbucks ($SBUX) said earnings would be cut in half due to the impact of Coronavirus. Same-store sales in the US fell 3% during the quarter, and same-store sales in the last week of March declined around 60% to 70%. The company reported sales tanking 50% in China during the quarter. After market close today, the coffee giant is estimated to report adjusted earnings of 34 cents per share on $5.90 billion in revenue during its fiscal second quarter.

But despite its hurting business, Starbucks’ hiring efforts have been largely unaffected. The number of job openings has remained around 20,800. The careers page on the company’s website shows an abundance of retail positions - whether or not it's filling them, may play out in the subsequent quarters' earnings reports.  

The company’s LinkedIn employee headcount has increased 5% over the past three months. 

Many of Starbucks’ locations are open and operating as takeout and drive-thru only. The company closed about 80% of its stores in China by early February, but about 90% have since reopened. Next, whether or not the company is able to reignite store count growth - which we can track on a country-by-country basis - will prove crucial to its rebound. 

Customers are still talking about the brand and earning it social media engagement. Facebook mentions peaked this month at 186,000, up 328% from late March.

Starbucks shared a letter earlier this month, detailing its ongoing recovery plans and updated quarterly forecast. The fact that the company is keeping an eye on developing issues, and that it was an early responder to the pandemic in China, is a good sign for Starbucks’ future.

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. 

Further Reading: 

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