While some fast-food chains bemoan labour inflation in America’s hot economy, Yum! Brands Inc.–owner of Taco Bell restaurants–is taking a different approach.
Instead of belt-tightening, Taco Bell is offering $100,000-a-year salaries for managers at select Midwest and New England, U.S. locations.
The company is also increasing wages for other leadership positions and offering incentives for all employees, including 24-hours paid sick leave.
With unemployment at 3.5 percent, 50-year-low in America, competition for qualified workers is heating up in sectors previously considered entry-level employment and largely staffed by minimum wage workers.
Though fast-food outfits like California’s In-N-Out Burger have been paying managers $100,000 for a decade, the average salary for running a Burger King restaurant in United States–$45,414, according to the employment website Glassdoor–is on par with managing a McDonald’s restaurant in Canada.
The following advertisement is from Service Canada’s ‘job bank’: McDonald’s manager for one of its Burnaby B.C. locations; $48,007/year.
But according to employment website Nuevo that tracks wages across industry sectors via job postings, the median managerial wage at a Canadian fast-food restaurant is $27,300.
Based on annual wages for 961 related jobs, the best paid fast-food managers live in Alberta and make an average of $39,488/year while the lowest paid are in the Maritimes–New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island–earning $23,400
Ironically, as some U.S. fast-food chains vie for managerial staff with more competitive salaries, the industry writ large has resisted efforts in Congress to increase the federal minimum wage from $7.25/hr to $15/hr, over five years.
The National Restaurant Association, lobbyists for the fast-food sector, continue to oppose this legislation, arguing that increasing the wage price floor would put smaller operators out of business.
It’s a similar argument that Ontario businesses made against increasing minimum wages in the province and in 2018, Progressive Conservative Premier Doug Ford’s government scrapped previous policy to increase it to $15/hr in 2019.