IMC Newsdesk

Jack in the Box pops up with AWS

  • August 24, 2020
  • Steve Rogerson

American fast-food chain Jack in the Box is using machine learning and cloud services from Amazon Web Services (AWS) to drive flexibility and resiliency across its organisation.
 
This should help the company offer cloud-based experiences for the more than half a billion diners who visit its outlets every year.
 
Jack in the Box migrated from its on-premises data centres to AWS, improving the performance and reliability of its IT infrastructure, and positioning the company to serve customers better in the digital age.
 
“As one of the nation’s first hamburger chains, we pride ourselves on being a leader in fast-food innovation, offering customers creative new menu items and the ability to customise their meals,” said Drew Martin, chief information officer at Jack in the Box. “By using AWS’s full portfolio of cloud services, we can continue to innovate new customer experiences while providing valuable information to our franchisees to help them operate more efficiently. AWS gives us the ability to be a more flexible, resilient and data-driven organisation, which is essential for our business to understand and adjust to the impacts of challenges such as Covid-19, flexibly scaling and contracting our resources to optimise how we operate.”
 
Jack in the Box chose AWS for its expertise in supporting the restaurant and hospitality industry, its set of cloud services and its scalable infrastructure, which are enabling the company to improve operational efficiency throughout the business.
 
For example, by moving off of Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server legacy databases to Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) and Amazon Redshift for data warehousing, Jack in the Box automated time-consuming IT administration tasks such as hardware provisioning, database setup, patching and backups, as well as cutting software and hosting costs.
 
Jack in the Box and its franchise restaurant operators now use a common operational dashboard powered by AWS to analyse sales, inventory, food safety and labour patterns, enabling them to focus on the daily performance of the business rather than the undifferentiated heavy lifting of backing up their servers and other tasks.
 
The chain is also leveraging the cloud to innovate digital ordering, dining and customer service experiences for its guests. This means Jack in the Box can leverage AWS’s portfolio of machine learning (ML) services to reveal insights into its customers’ tastes and habits. This includes Contact Lens with Amazon Connect, a set of ML capabilities integrated into a cloud-based contact centre service, to help customer services understand customer conversation sentiment and trends.
 
Jack in the Box will look to use these insights to train its customer service agents, replicate successful interactions, and identify product feedback that can be used to develop menu offerings and promotions.
 
Moving forward, Jack in the Box is planning future innovations, including helping its restaurants more accurately predict customer traffic and optimise service time and food costs using Amazon SageMaker, AWS’s service for building, training and deploying ML models. In addition, in response to increased use of its mobile app and delivery service as customers altered their routines this year, Jack in the Box also plans to use Amazon Personalize, an AWS ML service for creating individualised recommendations, to present customers with tailored suggestions on new food and beverage options and add-ons.
 
“Jack in the Box has been delighting restaurant goers for nearly 70 years,” said Greg Pearson, AWS vice president. “Now, with AWS’s proven infrastructure and deep portfolio of services powering their IT operations, they are able to expand their use of digital channels like online ordering and delivery apps to continue earning the loyalty of future generations. By going all-in on AWS, Jack in the Box can spend most of their time innovating versus having to navigate multiple platforms, giving the company and its restaurant franchise owners the ability to understand their customers better and anticipate their needs, while also providing the scale and flexibility to quickly respond to changing business operating conditions.”
 
Jack in the Box, based in San Diego, operates and franchises fast-food outlets and is one of the USA’s largest hamburger chains, with more than 2220 restaurants in 21 states.