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Starbucks Increases Minimum Wage for Employees to Attract Workers

Starbucks is raising its U.S. employees’ pay and making other changes as the company deals with a challenging labour market and as a union effort looms. The coffee giant announced Wednesday that all of its U.S. workers will earn at least $15 and up to $23 per hour by next summer.

In late January, employees with two or more years of service will get a 5% raise, while those with five or more years of service could receive up to a 10% raise. To attract new employees, a $200 recruitment bonus will be offered. Starbucks’ North America President Rossann Williams said the pay raises not only support workers but will enhance recruitment efforts.

Starbucks has raised pay three times in 24 months. Employees at three stores in Buffalo, New York, are trying to form a union to give them greater leverage on issues like understaffing of stores and worker training. The group, Starbucks Workers United, has filed petitions with the National Labor Relations Board seeking union votes.

The company, which has no unions at its 8,000 company-owned stores in the U.S., has said it respects workers’ right to organize but doesn’t believe a union is necessary because of its pro-worker policies. Starbucks is updating its training guide and adding more training time for workers. It said it also plans to test an app that will let workers sign up for available shifts that fit their schedule.

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