Panera Bread

www.panerabread.com

Panera Bread Reviews

Updated 23 January 2015
Updated 23 January 2015
1,459 Reviews
3.1
1,459 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Panera Bread CEO Ronald Shaich
Ronald Shaich
265 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • You get a discount on food and I met a lot of great people working there (in 96 reviews)

  • My department is really good about work-life balance and allowing flexible hours (in 57 reviews)


Cons
  • Careless and lazy managers well as very low pay for amount of work that is needed (in 30 reviews)

  • A LOT of hardwork only to get paid a dollar more than minimum wage (in 52 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Good experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Des Moines, IA (US)
    Former Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Des Moines, IA (US)

    I worked at Panera Bread

    Pros

    It's easy to learn and it's fun once you know how to so everything. Fun if you have good coworkers. Very friendly place. Crazy busy

    Cons

    The didn't like the hats a aprons we had to wear. Working the dining room was horrible because panera is always busy. And the early hours

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Upper management was easy to work with

  2.  

    good place

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Associate Trainer
    Current Employee - Associate Trainer

    I have been working at Panera Bread full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Fun work environment
    can get promoted easily

    Cons

    not enough pay for the amount of work

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3.  

    Enjoyed working here, great managers and employees

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Wilmette, IL (US)
    Former Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Wilmette, IL (US)

    I worked at Panera Bread part-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    I really appreciated the computer-based training they gave me before I even was allowed to start working up front. Some of it was about the company and their values, some of it about how to use the computer system and the foods' ingredients.
    The first GM I worked for was obsessed with registering people for My Panera cards, and would be mad if you didn't get a certain number per shift (like 30-40). I hated doing that but luckily my second GM didn't care as much so I guess it depends who you work for.
    My managers were all very nice and I enjoyed working with them. I worked the opening shift in the bakery and loved it because I'd be done by 2 pm (5-1 or 2). Overall solid place to work in the food service industry. Also, one of the people who was hired at the same time as me was an Assistant Manager within a year of starting. (I just worked here for two summers, I was not on the management path.)

    Cons

    None that I can think of.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Keep treating your employees well. Good work.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    worked on and off with this company for 3 years, its a love hate relationship

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Catering Supervisor/Employee Trainor in Raritan, NJ (US)
    Former Employee - Catering Supervisor/Employee Trainor in Raritan, NJ (US)

    I worked at Panera Bread

    Pros

    flexability, room for growth, easy to transfer

    Cons

    the pay is not very pleasing to the amount of work expected of you

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    maybe higher the shift supervisors pay rate they are expected to do way too much for 10/hr and no option of yearly salary

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6.  

    Experience was filled with highs and lowed, fellow employees helped make the difference.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Panera Bread

    Pros

    - Chill and typically young employees
    - Discount on food
    - Relaxed workplace

    Cons

    - Difficult to move up and rather time consuming
    - Annoying customers
    - Can get really stressful

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    - Loosen up and try not to be hypocritical.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Overnight Baker, Great if You Are Looking to Work the Graveyard Shift

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Overnight Baker in Orlando, FL (US)
    Former Employee - Overnight Baker in Orlando, FL (US)

    I worked at Panera Bread full-time (less than an year)

    Pros

    Overall, I had a great experience as an overnight baker at Panera. Both my bosses were awesome to work with and even though work was tough, it was pretty standard once I was done with training. I would still be working if I did not have to quit due to my commitment to finishing college. Other pros were:

    -Given plenty of freedom to work at your own pace as you are usually working alone.
    -Free credit for food when done for the day.
    -Better than average pay, decent benefits and some raises.
    -40 hours a week
    -Almost all of the other bakers were excellent at their jobs and fun to be around.
    -Although both of my bosses were quite tough, they were very appreciative and supportive of the good work I did.
    -Both my bosses were always willing to send me help if I needed it (for a $2000+ bake, catering, etc.).
    -Both my bosses would deal with any issues that GMs and store managers would have with either me or my bakes (believe me, they would complain about everything).
    -6 weeks of training which is more than enough to learns the ropes of panera baking which does not require any prior food experience.
    -Although I went to a bunch of different stores for training, I settled into one store when I was done with training and stayed there for the remainder of my time at panera.

    Cons

    -There is no set time for breaks. The only time I was able to take one was if I hurried through my bake to have about 15 minutes to take one before I started clean up.
    -This job is very mentally and physically demanding even once you get the hang of it.
    -Solo baking is very tough and you won't get many hours during the slower times of year (April through September) if you can't solo bake.
    -You need precise time management for this job. One wrong thing will ruin an entire night and have you hustling to get the bake done.
    -Store and Baking management are run by two different systems which leads to quite a bit of problems.
    -No reimbursement for gas or tolls if you have to go to another store.
    -Detail cleaning is stressed but it is hard to get done when solo baking.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Get baking management and the store GMs on the same page. It only makes things so much harder on my bosses who already had a ton to deal with. Bakers NEED breaks even if it would mean starting 30 minutes earlier to take one. There is no rationale for why travel is not reimbursed other than being a cheap company. Gas may be cheaper now but it certainly wasn't when I was working. All these things need to be corrected ASAP.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  8.  

    Cool associates. had fun working here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Taylor, MI (US)
    Current Employee - Panera Bread Associate in Taylor, MI (US)

    I have been working at Panera Bread part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Works with you if you go to school
    Easy job
    Great coworkers

    Cons

    Business doesn't know what it wants to do. always making policies and changing them back.
    The managers are decent but not great

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat everyone equally!

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  9.  

    Bakers are the Backbone of Panera

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Day Baker
    Current Employee - Day Baker

    I have been working at Panera Bread full-time

    Pros

    If you work well independently, like to set your own pace, and work well with deadlines -- this is a decent job that doesn't require a college degree. As a baker for Panera, you do whats called 'production baking' so that means all of the dough is delivered 'pre mixed' or frozen. It takes 7 weeks to train, so after that -- you work on perfecting your abilities, and efficiency to work. Focus on being strategic with your time, effectively presenting each product well, and being flexible and you will succeed.

    Cons

    Consistency, and Communication. As a baker, it is not always guaranteed you will be at the same location every day. Although you answer to your Baker Manager off site, the store you are assigned to plays a HUGE role in positively or negatively effecting your day. Due to the Bakers Manager being off site, there are blind-spots, and work dynamics that seem to be a continual struggle, no matter how long you have been with the company. Because of the isolation, communication is always a struggle..
    Last point, I heard that rewards, and bonuses have been since I have started.. the lack of motivation can be seen when changing shifts and having to work after someone who doesn't seem to care is clearly felt more and more.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If there were consistent 1-2 locations each baker had to be at each week.. it would help us all work together better as team Panera -as a whole.
    Make yourself --as our only other voice-- easy to access, and as personally approachable as possible; as this is not always clear.
    If we met together more often (bakers), it would be much healthier than all the new information that is discussed/changed each Celebration (quarter). Maybe bring back some form of bonus, some form of reward... to keep people motivated to do more than the absolute minimum - as it affects everyone.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  10.  

    Good job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Panera Bread

    Pros

    Good people. Good food.

    Cons

    Long hours, early days. No 2 days off in a row.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    None

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