Starbucks Doesn't Care If You're In A Hurry

In an effort to make your stay at Starbucks as long as possible, the company is telling baristas to slow down and make no more than two drinks at a time, reports the Wall Street Journal.

The Journal, which says it has reviewed company documents detailing the need for the slow-down, says that the policy is a reaction to customer complaints about so-so quality and taste inconsistencies. To that end, Starbucks isn’t just asking baristas to make fewer drinks at a time.

Writes the paper:

Baristas are also supposed to steam milk for each drink rather than steaming an entire pitcher to be used for several beverages. Other instructions include rinsing pitchers after each use; staying at the espresso bar instead of moving around; and using only one espresso machine instead of two, according to the documents.

The policy changes are expected to roll out to all North American Starbucks by next month. But some of those who have already begun working under the new regulations say it’s only slowed down the workflow.

One barista in Minnesota tells the Journal that the new policies have “doubled the amount of time it takes to make drinks in some cases.”

Starbucks tut-tuts these concerns, saying, “As with any new behavior, it will take time for baristas to become comfortable with the new method.”

The company says the new single-serve steaming policy “ensures the quality of the beverage in taste, temperature and appearance,” while its two drink at a time limit “reduces possibility for errors.”

However, Starbucks does confess that some drinks will take longer to make because of the new policies. In such cases, employees are to “let the customer know their beverage will take a little longer and may be out of order due to the time it takes the milk to settle and the foam to rise to the top (approximately 60 seconds).”

Do you think this will cause a long-lasting slowdown in beverage service at Starbucks? Or will baristas eventually catch up to where the time difference is negligible.

At Starbucks, Baristas Told No More Than Two Drinks [WSJ]