Chipotle boosts benefits for its Gen Z workforce

The fast-casual Mexican restaurant chain announced a series of financial and mental wellness benefits as it ramps up hiring for what it calls "burrito season."
Chipotle wants to hire 19,000 additional workers to prepare for the busy March-May period. | Photo: Shutterstock.

Chipotle wants to hire 19,000 workers for what it’s calling “burrito season,” the period from March to May in which it is busiest. So, it is boosting its benefits to bring in more applicants.

The fast-casual burrito chain on Wednesday announced a series of benefits specifically targeted at younger “Gen Z” workers. The financial and mental wellness benefits are also designed to support its 110,000 employees.

The new benefits include:

Retirement benefits. The company will use SoFi’s Student Loan Verification Service to match employees’ 401(k) contributions, up to 4% of their salary, so long as they make their student loan payments. The benefit is designed to ensure employees don’t have to choose between paying off loans or saving for retirement.

Banking benefits. Employees will have access to a banking service from, which includes a high-tech Visa card with security features, fast access to paychecks and a “credit optimizer” that boosts credit scores.

Financial management. Chipotle is also giving customers access to the SoFi at Work Dashboard, which provides financial education, an assessment of employees’ financial outlook and tools for them to improve it.

Mental health resources. Chipotle’s new Employee Assistance Program, SupportLinc, provides six free sessions with a licensed counselor or mental health coach along with tools, resources and other support for legal, financial or family matters.

Nearly three quarters of Chipotle’s restaurant employees are members of the Gen Z generation. The company said its new benefits cater to their unique challenges. People born in the late 1990s through early 2000s are experiencing notable financial challenges, including more credit card debt, and are more than twice as likely as the general population to not feel confident in managing their money, Chipotle said.

“As we push toward our long-term goal of operating 7,000 restaurants in North America, it’s crucial that we listen to and adapt to the needs of our team members, so they can grow with us,” Ilene Eskenazi, chief human resources officer for the 3,000-unit chain, said in a statement.

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