ALEXANDRIA, Va.—One Chick-fil-A in Miami has been using a three-day work week to recruit and retain employees, and it appears to be working, reports Nation’s Restaurant News (NRN). The shortened work week began in January, and according to the operator of the store, Justin Lindsey, employee retention is at 100%, and a recent job posting for the store received 429 applications within a week of posting.
Lindsey told NRN that all 18 of his managers had to participate before the schedule was implemented, which they agreed, and he divided them into two “pods.” The pods work 13-14-hour shift three days a week, then have four days off, and they get seven days off in a row once a month.
The idea for the three-day work week came from the idea that it takes time for a team to click, according to Lindsey, and then the pods happened, and the teams began working together every day for days on end, becoming a family unit.
“People [we hire] basically line up saying, ‘hey, how do I be a part of this?’” Lindsey told NRN.
The location has nearly 40 employees, and while of the managers are part of the three-day work week, not all workers have signed up, but a lot of them have, and more are still joining. Lindsey told NRN it’s the consistency of the three-day work week that makes it so powerful.
“A lot of people do have a passion to work in the industry, but still want to have [their] time. [They] value their time, they value their family, they value school … whatever it may be. This schedule gives them that opportunity, and it takes out the guesswork,” Lindsey told NRN. “You know what times you work, you know what days you work. They can look out in December right now and see, these are the three days of the week that I work in December.”
Lindsey told NRN that his employees have used the days to visit sick relatives in other countries or take vacations, which is something that is hard to do when working at a QSR due to the unpredictable schedule and not enough PTO days.
NACS hosted three webinars this summer that discussed innovative ways to address the labor shortage facing the convenience retailing industry, including flexible and innovative scheduling.
NACS has partnered with The Good Jobs Institute on how c-store operators can provide “good jobs,” which meet people’s basic needs and offer conditions for engagement and motivation. The Good Jobs Calculator, designed exclusively for NACS members and the convenience industry, allows retailers to use their own data and customized assumptions about the amount of improvement or uplift achievable, so executives can run scenarios on the bottom-line impact of a Good Jobs system.
Revisit “Understanding Your Local Labor Landscape” in the December 2021 issue of NACS Magazine for tips on building an effective employee value proposition and how to gain an edge when competing for candidates.