Chili's parent eyes $18 hourly wage by 2023

The raise is one part of Brinker International's plans to create a more socially conscious and sustainable business.
Chili's exterior
Photograph: Shutterstock

Brinker International, the parent of Chili's and Maggiano's, is aiming for restaurant staff to earn an average of $18 an hour by 2023. 

That was among the revelations in the company's first Sustainability Report, which details its plans for creating a more diverse, socially conscious and sustainable business.

The wage hike would build upon Brinker employees' current average hourly earnings of $16.95 an hour, which includes tips, bonuses and sick pay. That is higher than the $15 that is quickly becoming an industry standard.

The company said the $18 rate is "aspirational," but identified pay as a key concern for the nearly 59,500 people who work in its restaurants.

Brinker also wants to increase Chili's general managers' total earnings to $100,000 by 2025. They earned an average of $87,000 in 2021.

Other goals detailed in the report include:

  • Increasing diversity in operations leadership positions to 40% by 2025, up from 35% this year.
  • Increasing the number of women in operations leadership positions to 45% by 2025, up from 40%.
  • Promoting at least 80% of Chili's managers and 90% of Chili's GMs from within in 2022.
  • Monitoring carbon emissions while developing a long-term plan to reduce them.
  • Increasing female and ethnically diverse representation on its board to 60% by 2024.

The report comes amid heightened awareness around restaurants' role in issues of social justice and climate change. In reflecting on some of the positive impacts Brinker has made over the years, CEO Wyman Roberts wrote, "our eyes are also open to the social challenges and inequalities that still exist and continue to emerge."

That formed the basis for the report, which provides information about Brinker's activities in four areas: people, food, climate and governance.

Members help make our journalism possible. Become a Restaurant Business member today and unlock exclusive benefits, including unlimited access to all of our content. Sign up here.


Exclusive Content


Older brands try new tricks in their quest to stay relevant

Reality Check: A number of mature restaurant chains are out to prove that age is just a number.


At Papa Johns, delivery shifts from its own apps to aggregators

The Bottom Line: The pizza delivery chain’s business with companies like Uber Eats and DoorDash is thriving while its own delivery is slowing. But this isn’t the beginning of the end of self-delivery, CEO Rob Lynch says.


How the shift to counter service has changed Steak n Shake's profitability

The Bottom Line: Sardar Biglari, chairman of the chain’s owner Biglari Holdings, details how the addition of kiosks and counter service has transformed restaurants.


More from our partners