Best Restaurants For Hourly Jobs

Amber Shiflett |
additionalText.categories: Finding a job, Working

If you’ve been in the restaurant world long enough, you know there are some… not so great places to work. You’ve probably witnessed your fair share of bad management, low pay and people who just plain hated their jobs. Good news! A lot of restaurant chains are really trying to change the negative view many employees have. Check out our list of the top restaurants to work for (and why they’re great).

The Cheesecake Factory

89% of this casual dining restaurant employees say it’s a great place to work! The initial training for wait staff is tough (they spend an entire week memorizing Every. Single. Menu item. All 20 pages!). Many employees have been with the company for years, and servers advancing into management isn’t unusual. The restaurants are run like a corporation with rules dictating how much ice to put in a glass and how many pats of butter come with bread. But the pay and tips are better than average.

In-N-Out Burger

Flipping over to fast food, the In-N-Out Burger chain is legendary for its workplace culture. In fact, they earned the number 4 spot on Glassdoor’s list of the best places to work in 2018. Not best fast food chain… best place overall! They even beat Microsoft and Google. The company offers a good work/life balance, great pay and benefits and free food every day you work!


The iconic fast food chicken restaurant has a ton of perks and benefits. Team members can get up to $25,000 in college scholarships, as well as tuition discounts at more than 70 schools in the U.S. You get Sundays off… always. The culture is very caring, and a lot of employees say their coworkers are like family. Salaries are pretty good, too, and start around $11/hour. That chicken sandwich tho!

Darden Group (Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Longhorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze)

As long as you work at least 30 hours a week, you qualify for this restaurant group's benefits package. It includes health insurance and a 401(k) to help you save for retirement. The salaries are viewed as positive in the industry (servers make about $4/hour plus tips, line cooks make around $13/hour). Nearly 75% of employees would recommend the company to a friend. Employee reviews say it’s a chill, fast-paced work environment with easy money.


The folks at Starbucks have some pretty cool perks. Every week employees can take home:

  • a pound of coffee beans

  • a box of K-Cup Pods

  • a box of their favorite flavor of Tazo tea

Their benefits package includes health insurance, 401(k) and bonuses… and it’s available for full-time and part-time employees. And check out this awesome benefit: The company will pay full tuition to Arizona State University’s online bachelor’s degree program. Employees who are juniors or seniors in college get full tuition, and freshmen and sophomores get partially paid tuition. The salaries are pretty great too. Baristas (those coffee making pros) earn between $10 and $15 an hour, not including tips.