Although career ladders aren’t the most cutting-edge recruitment tool at operators’ disposal, a tightening labor market seems to be pushing the development device to the forefront. Several major players have recast their long-term career opportunities into digestible formats that they can market to potential hires and keep current team members on track. Heck, even the National Restaurant Association created a shiny new ladder for the industry. Here are four restaurants that are sketching out professional pathways for employees.
1. Sweetgreen raises prices for career development
In June, Sweetgreen raised its menu prices to pay for employee advancement, higher staff wages and new benefits, according to a company news release. The Washington, D.C.-based chain’s fresh career ladder serves as a retention tool, so that staff “can grow with Sweetgreen, increase their earning potential and learn essential leadership skills.” In job listings, the fast casual cites a clear career path and personal and professional development as a key benefit to joining the team.
2. McDonald’s helps workers take the first step
This year, McDonald’s launched a program to help team members earn their GED and begin on a career track. The GED program rolls job-related skill development into the curriculum. The programs’ more than 17,000 enrollees also have access to a career coach.
3. Taco Bell modernizes the career ladder
Taco Bell has created a career ladder for the millennial age. The quick-service chain began partnering with TV show Roadtrip Nation to show the career paths of current and former Taco Bell employees. The videos are also posted on a microsite, where “team members and alumni can share their stories with fellow and future team members to learn from—and grow with—each other,” according to the website.
4. Perkins prioritizes advancement on the first day
Perkins Restaurant & Bakery tells employees how they can move up during orientation. The midscale chain has organized training pathways that are broken up into hourly training sessions for greater accessibility and cross-training capabilities. “You get to be the driver,” Donna Herbel, director of training and development, told the NRA.