How Much Money Do Burger King Employees Typically Make?

Burger King is indisputably a titan of the fast food restaurant industry, a highly recognizable brand that has dominated the global scene since 1954. The burger chain now claims to be the second-largest in the world, serving people every day in over 18,000 locations (per RBI).

So, the restaurant coverage is comprehensive and there are clearly a lot of customers, but there are two other key things to keeping Burger King going: food (obviously) and workers. The latter is particularly crucial — you need people to serve customers, clean tables, and manage operations, and they need to be paid and treated appropriately if they're going to be successfully recruited and retained.

According to Payscale, the overall average pay of employees at Burger King is $10.36 an hour (although Talent puts the figure closer to $13.13) — but how does that change for individual roles, and does the money make it worthwhile working there? We've investigated salaries for specific Burger King jobs, working conditions, and how the company compares to its competitors.

How much do different Burger King roles pay?

Cashiers at Burger King are said to earn $13.25 hourly, according to Indeed. However, one franchisee, HMS Host, offers $18 an hour for the role, which it says involves completing customer transactions, ensuring a supply of stock, and cleaning. Team or crew member is more kitchen-focused, involving using fryers and ensuring clean work surfaces. For this, pay is estimated at $11.98. Cooks, meanwhile, are believed to earn around $12.50.

Pay increases with more responsibility — shift leaders, for example, take home $14.22 hourly for ensuring the safety of staff and instructing them what to do, explains Workstream. Assistant managers (who help restaurant managers to ensure profits and food quality) earn an average of $45,688 (per Glassdoor), while fully-fledged managers can achieve $54,202. General managers are responsible for multiple restaurants, overseeing sales, staffing, and reporting to higher management. They can make as much as $78,350 a year.

All of these payments are dwarfed by Burger King's executive pay. Its president, Thomas Curtis, is reported by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to receive annual compensation made up from pay, bonuses, and shares of over $4.8 million.

What is it like to work at Burger King?

Considering that Burger King makes annual sales of $23 billion (per Verdict Food Service), it's realistic to assume that the company is fairly good to work for. Employees aren't necessarily convinced though, with both Indeed and Glassdoor recording an overall 3.4 out of five satisfaction rating for Burger King.

The best things about working at Burger King are flexible working options, friendly staff, and — most importantly — free food, according to Glassdoor. However, negative comments are more abundant, with reviews noting low pay, poor and unfriendly management, unprofessionalism, long hours, and even bad smells. Indeed details similar reports, including easy tasks and helpful staff contrasted with poor wages and uncooperative customers.

There are mixed reviews about company benefits, too. While some note the offer of insurance for health, dental care, and life, as well as paid leave and discounts, others claim these aren't always available. ADP explains that franchisees are usually responsible for organizing employee pay, so perhaps this explains pay and benefits disparities.

How working at Burger King compares to other fast food brands

Similar companies to Burger King offer much the same salaries. According to Payscale, the overall average pay for McDonald's is $11.19 per hour, while at Wendy's it's $10.48. For KFC, the figure is $10.68.

Looking at specific salaries, Wendy's crew members earn $12.94 hourly, while comparable rates at KFC and McDonald's are $12.57 and $12.41 respectively. For cooks, the hourly pay at KFC is $13.84, dropping to $12.86 at McDonald's and $12.75 at Wendy's. The average earnings for equivalent roles in Burger King are less, but for management positions seem to be higher. The estimated general manager salary at Wendy's is $54,136, changing to $53,459 at McDonald's, and $47,064 at KFC.

These outlets all score roughly the same as Burger King on employee satisfaction scales: McDonald's and KFC stand firm at 3.5, but Wendy's scores as low as 3.3. Compliments and gripes about working conditions share many similarities too, with free food, pleasant co-workers, and flexible working all considered to boost the appeal of Burger King's fast food rivals. Problems, on the other hand, consist of low pay, long hours, and inadequate management.