Chipotle has launched a new hiring campaign to help fill 15,000 job openings ahead of the chain’s busy season, which is typically from March to May. The campaign features stories of six existing employees and their career progression, as well as behind-the-scenes footage of their jobs. This campaign comes as Chipotle looks to more than double its footprint to 7,000 locations in North America in the next several years, from its nearly 3,100 locations.
While recruitment is the main focus of this campaign, retention is also an objective. According to the company, its workforce investments in 2022 have shown increased retention rates. Those investments included approximately 22,000 internal promotions. Over 90% of the brand’s management roles were internal promotions last year, including 100% of U.S. regional vice president roles, 81% of team directors and 74% of field leader positions.
In a statement, Chief Restaurant Officer Scott Boatwright said the company is targeting its current employees to “serve as our leaders of tomorrow.”
“We will continue bringing in new crew to support Chipotle’s aggressive growth plans, while simultaneously promoting and upskilling those currently in role,” he said. “Our goal is to develop and retain diverse talent at every level of the organization and be the employer of choice.”
Chipotle has long offered benefits aimed at recruitment and retention. Its Cultivate Education program, for instance, provides tuition reimbursement for eligible employees. The company claims the program, launched in 2016, has led to a higher retention rate and crew members using the benefit are 7.5 times more likely to move into a management role within the organization. The company also provides mental health resources, financial wellness counseling, quarterly bonuses and more. In 2021, Chipotle raised average wages to $15.
That said, labor has been hard to come by in the industry, and the workforce remains nearly 500,00 employees short of pre-pandemic numbers. For Chipotle, an influx of new employees has caused some operational complexities as the business juggles a return to dine-in business and sustained off-premises business. In July, the company launched its Project Square One initiative to focus on operational throughput to balance these two businesses. During the company’s most recent earnings call in October, CEO Brian Niccol said 50% of its field leaders were new to the company.
“So, 90% have been promoted internally, but we’ve got a lot of new people in the business at new levels of responsibility,” he said.
Contact Alicia Kelso at [email protected]