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Chipotle tests unlimited paid time off for senior staff

The fast-casual chain continues to beef up its benefits offerings to recruit and retain workers in a challenging labor market.
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Chipotle Mexican Grill is offering unlimited paid time off for the fast-casual chain’s senior-level management under a test announced Thursday.

“This will give increased flexibility for these employees to juggle their many priorities at work as well as at home, without having to worry about accruing vacation or sick time,” the Newport Beach, Calif.-based company said in a statement.

The program will be evaluated via Chipotle’s “stage-gate” process, which the brand uses to test new menu items and other innovations.

Chipotle also announced Thursday the expansion of its paid parental leave program, which now grants Restaurant Support Center and eligible field employees 12 weeks off for birth mothers and four weeks of leave for new dads and those adopting children.

Chipotle will also pay shipping costs for breast milk for nursing mothers who must travel for work.

"Over the past year, we've positioned ourselves as a leader in curating an environment that maximizes the potential of our outstanding workforce," said Marissa Andrada, Chipotle’s chief people officer. "We want to ensure our employees are able to share important moments with their family and have the necessary time away from work to recharge after a monumental life event."

With labor pressures looming across the industry, Chipotle has continued to innovate its suite of benefits to attract and retain employees.

Last year, the chain added a crew bonus program, allowing high-achieving employees the opportunity to earn an extra month’s pay each year. So far, the company has paid out more than $2.75 million in bonuses, with 10% of its 2,600 units receiving at bonus during at least one quarter last year. Chipotle also offers tuition assistance programs for some college programs as well as financial and mental health assistance.

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