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Chris Wood, Managing Dir., Planning

Chris Wood, age 47, has spent the majority of his career working in the planning and finance side of the sales and customer service operations of fortune 500 companies. Initially he ran the payroll and scheduling functions for Holiday Inn’s customer service operations in Salt Lake City where he and his team had responsibility for scheduling over 1100 employees and overseeing a payroll budget that exceeded $32 million annually. While at Holiday Inn, Chris created and implemented an employee incentive pay system known as RBPP (Revenue Bonus Pay Plan), that was designed to boost employee productivity while ensuring budgeted payroll targets were met.

He then moved his family to Tulsa, Oklahoma to assume responsibility for Workforce Management at Avis Rent-A-Car’s reservations and customer service operations. During his tenure, the Avis operation was expanded from one facility in Tulsa to seven facilities located throughout the United States, Canada, and India. As a result of this growth Chris recommended the purchase of Cisco ICM routing software which resulted in a net savings in excess of $600,000 per year.

The Cendant Corporation acquired Avis. While with Cendant, Chris served as Director Resource Planning and Management. In this role Chris spent the majority of his time consulting with and implementing best practices among Cendant’s various sales and customer service organizations. Among his accomplishments, he implemented Christal Ball, a forecasting, planning and budgeting software of his own design, at Cendant’s Car Rental, Hotel, RCI, Trilegiant and Fairfield business units. Chris’ software was used at Cendant facilities throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia to plan for and budget over 15,000 employees and was credited with increasing annual revenue by $37 million. For this accomplishment Chris received Cendant’s Star Performer Award.

Chris also designed a new incentive pay structure for Cendant’s Rent-a-Car division and developed the Performance Based Scheduling (PBS) process used to assign employee shifts based upon employee performance. He developed a new employee time keeping process that eliminated time clocks resulting in $1.6 million annual payroll savings for Cendant’s Rent-a-Car, Hotel, and Travel divisions. He improved sales at Cendant’s RCI division by recommending the addition of 400 employees resulting in the best 3rd and 4th quarter profits in that company’s history. At Cendant Travel Chris recommended a framework for merging 15 sales and customer service departments into 4 departments resulting in identified savings of $4.28 million annually.

Chris’ reputation as an Excel spreadsheet and financial operations modeling expert has become widely known. Along the way he has also owned and operated his own painting and remodeling company. Chris attended the University of Utah where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Finance. He also holds an MBA from the University of Utah wherein he specialized in Operations Research and Management, also known as six-sigma studies.

Chris and his wife of 23 years, Julie, have six children and reside in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Four of their children are still at home: Katrina (16), Hunter (10), Jenica (7) and Zane (6). The two oldest are Rob, a logistics broker also in Tulsa and Logan, who is doing missionary work out west. The family’s interests include music, athletics and activities with their church.

C. Edward Acker
ESOP Association
NCEO Kelso