Chipotle Plans To Hire 4,000 People In Single Day

Chipotle has a plan to grow its workforce by 7%, not over the course of a year or even a few months. The burrito chain’s goal is to accomplish this feat — hiring 4,000 new employees — in the course of a single day in September.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the job-a-thon is slated to take place on Sept. 9, and that Chipotle isn’t just aiming to recruit anyone who needs a job, but people who could eventually be longterm Chipotle staffers earning decent salaries and even owning a piece of the company.

To accommodate all the applicants needed to meet the company’s hiring goals, each Chipotle location will open three hours earlier than usual on Sept. 9. Applicants will be interviewed until 11 a.m.

Four thousand new workers comes out to an average of more than two hires per store. Some applicants will be interviewing for work at soon-to-open Chipotle locations, but most of the interviews will be for existing stores.

Most fast food chains own few, if any, of their stores. Instead, the majority of McDonald’s and Burger King locations are owned by franchisees who are responsible for doing the hiring. Meanwhile, Chipotle’s nearly 1,800 stores in the U.S. are all company-owned.

Employee turnover has always been high in the foodservice industry, which can lead to lazy hiring and management practices. After all, if the person you hire today won’t still be working for you six months from now, what’s the point in paying them a competitive salary or investing in training them for advancement?

Chipotle says that with Americans’ financial situations on the upswing, there is now increased competition for decent workers.

“The economy has been thawing, more restaurants are opening, and there are fewer job applicants than there were several years ago,” explains co-CEO Monty Moran to the Journal.

In an effort to attract potential longterm, loyal employees, a number of quick-service chains have improved pay (sometimes in response to local minimum wage increases), and added new benefits like college tuition reimbursement.

In addition to expanded tuition reimbursement and more vacation time, Chipotle has been marketing its workplaces as an entry into a comfortable living, claiming that “apprentices” can earn $53,000/year while the rare, higher-level “restaurateurs” earn $133,000/year.

The Journal notes that some online data provided by people claiming to work for Chipotle seem to indicate that these figures might be inflated, but Chipotle says their numbers are accurate.

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