The Reason Chipotle Is So Invested In The Future Of Its Employees

If you decide to work at Chipotle, you can score a ton of benefits. According to Chipotle's website, employees can receive yearly college scholarships of up to $5,250, paid time off, free counseling services, and a free meal during every full shift. Plus, employees and successful branches get quarterly bonuses. These attractive perks make the burrito retailer stand out from its competition when it comes to treating its employees right, but it can make anyone wonder why the company shows its team so much love.

NBC reports that Chipotle owns its stores instead of relying on a franchise model to run their business. As a result, the company has a more intimate relationship with their employees and has the chance to strengthen their bonds, especially during the current labor shortage. The service industry currently faces a crisis due to a lack of workers and Chipotle has directly addressed this issue by investing in their current staff. This doesn't necessarily mean that the restaurant has a soft spot for its workers, though. Chipotle's incentives actually come from a profit-driven model that can keep the company moving forward and selling burritos for years to come.

Strengthening the Chipotle brand by investing in employees

According to NBC, Chipotle's push to support workers stems from keeping their company profitable for years to come. "Almost all [the] managers in the future will come from the crews of today," Jack Hartung, Chipotle's CFO told NBC. "So every dime we spend on that labor line, whether wages or benefits or education, is an investment in the future, and that's a different way to think about it." For the CFO, the employee benefits minimize costs down the road, and Hartung vowed to keep pushing for more perks to keep the brand's employees satisfied. As a result, the fast food chain hasn't felt the same labor pressure other restaurants have faced throughout the pandemic. Despite supply chain issues, the company opted to raise prices by 4% rather than cut benefits. However, this decision wasn't universally loved — some critics argue the CEO's substantial salary should have been trimmed down instead.

Overall, Chipotle's approach has proven extremely successful. The chain's value as a company has tripled since the start of the pandemic and ties back to its approach to employee benefits. Its consistency and transparency has also struck a chord with younger patrons, which has helped further drive the chain's success. These perks might not encompass everything an employee wants, but it has certainly set Chipotle apart from its competition.