Chipotle Expanding Benefits To Hourly Workers, Including Full Tuition Reimbursement

Tuition Reimbursement at Chipotle and other new employee benefits for hourly workers

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. is in the process of expanding benefits to hourly workers. Those benefits, which include full tuition reimbursements, sick pay, and paid vacations, were formerly reserved for salaried workers only. Start on July 1, all employees will have access to the same perks.

JD Cummings, recruitment strategy manager at Denver-based Chipotle, and William Espey, brand voice lead in Chipotle’s marketing division, made the announcement at the company’s Summer Brand Camp marketing and human resources conference.“We just made an announcement internally that we are now going to be offering sick pay and paid vacation time for all employees at all levels of the company, including all entry-level e

“We just made an announcement internally that we are now going to be offering sick pay and paid vacation time for all employees at all levels of the company, including all entry-level employees,” Cummings said. “And we’re going to be offering the full-tuition reimbursement that we offer salaried employees to all hourly employees.”

According to Cummings, the company wants to provide a positive career path for all of its workers. “It’s an incredible statement by our leadership about how much we want to invest in the best people we have and to keep them with us.”
The company says the move will help target high school and college students, “which is a lot of our target demographic for entry-level positions in the restaurant,” Cummings added.

“We have a lot of folks who, if they realize they could make a career with Chipotle, would stick with us while they are in college and take advantage of our tuition-reimbursement program. They could find the path to restaurateur is an amazing path that they might not have thought of.”

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Espey, who has been with Chipotle for 18 years, noted that the brand’s culture has long reflected its human resources practices, which has resulted in low turnover. “If you can’t compete at the bottom in the terms of entry-level wage, what incentive can you build into that process — what path can you create — that’s going to hold your people?” Espey asked. “You’ve got to promise them you’re going to develop them. You’ve got to promise them a future that if they are dedicated and good and strong for the company, you are going to reward them.”

95 percent of Chipotle managers are promoted from existing crew member positions.