Employee retention in the fast-food industry has always been a challenge, but it is even more of a challenge in the gig economy. However, employee turnover is costly for fast food and fast-casual service restaurants and can create customer dissatisfaction.

There are many explanations for why employee retention is a challenge in the restaurant business. The most common reason is that fast-food restaurants offer low wages and few advancement opportunities. This often leads to a high number of employees looking for other opportunities.

Another reason employee retention is a challenge for every fast food restaurant is the nature of the job. Fast-food jobs are often considered to be low-skilled and entry-level. This can lead to employees feeling like they are not valued or appreciated. Additionally, the work can be repetitive and monotonous, leading to employee dissatisfaction.

7 Tips for Improving Employee Retention in the Fast-Food Industry

Magnet and figures of people symbolizing staff turnover rate and employee retention

Understand the importance of fast food employee retention

The Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that jobs in the restaurant industry will grow by 17% from 2020 to 2030.

There are a few key reasons why fast food employee retention is so necessary:

  • Turnover cost. The cost of recruiting and training new employees can add up quickly.
  • A high turnover rate can negatively impact morale. When employees see that their coworkers are constantly quitting, it can make them feel like they’re in a dead-end job.
  • Good employees are hard to find. It can be challenging to find qualified and willing workers to stay in a fast-food job for the long haul.

Train new employees consistently and adequately

Training new employees consistently and adequately is one of the best ways to improve employee retention in the fast-food industry. When employees understand what is required of them from the start, they are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs and less likely to quit. Providing clear training and guidelines about terms of service will help new employees feel more comfortable in their roles and more invested in their work.

Invest in your employees

Investing in your employees is another great way to improve employee retention in the fast-food industry. When employees feel valued and appreciated, they are more likely to stick around. Offer employee development opportunities, such as training programs or tuition reimbursement, to show your employees that you are invested in their future. When a fast-food worker knows that they have the potential to move into a management role, they are more likely to stay with the company for the long term.

Create a positive work environment

Creating a positive work setting is another crucial step to take to improve employee retention in the fast-food industry. When employees feel part of a supportive and positive team, they are more likely to be happy with their job and less likely to quit.

One way to create a positive company culture is to encourage team-building activities and socializing among staff members. For example, you could host regular employee appreciation events. These events can include fun activities like trivia nights or outdoor barbecues or provide opportunities for employees to mix and get to know each other better in the long run.

Communicate with your employees regularly

Communication is key to a successful workplace. When employees feel heard and that their concerns are being addressed, they are more likely to be satisfied with their job and less likely to quit.

Make sure to communicate regularly with your employees, both verbally and in writing. Be open to employee feedback and be willing to listen to suggestions on improving the workplace. Let your employees know that you value their input and feedback. Make sure to give praise when it’s deserved and address any concerns promptly.

Offer competitive pay and benefits

If you want to attract and keep great employees, you need to offer competitive pay and benefits. This is arguably the most critical thing you can do to improve employee retention for a restaurant worker. If you provide competitive wages, employees will be less likely to leave in search of better opportunities.

Use HourWork employee retention software

HourWork is a SaaS recruitment and retention platform and its franchisee customers represent some of the largest multi-unit operators across iconic QSR brands such as McDonald’s, Burger King, Taco Bell, Dominos, Wendy’s, White Castle, and many others.

HourWork is the solution to two of the biggest problems in the quick-serve restaurant industry – hiring and retention. 

Franchise restaurant owners are always looking to improve food service applicant flow and reduce employee turnover, but they don’t have the time or resources to do it effectively. 

HourWork can help by:

  • Increasing the number of applicants for vacant positions by sending automated messages to former applicants and employees
  • Finding fast-food employees with specific skill sets to match demand in the business
  • Sending automated messages to new hires to uncover any potential problems that might cause them to look for work elsewhere
  • Facilitating pulse surveys to find out what employees think about their job, their manager, and the company
  • Helping you create an employee retention plan tailored to your specific needs

If you’re looking for ways to improve employee retention in your fast food restaurant, consider using HourWork. With its help, you can increase employee satisfaction and retain employees. Get in touch to discuss your hiring and retention needs.