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Panera Bread
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1,677 reviews

Panera Bread Employer Reviews

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Very fun job
Sandwich Artist (Former Employee), CharlotteSeptember 18, 2014
Pros: just about everything
Cons: employee confrontaition occasionally
I worked Morning Shift I honestly loved this job. I went to work happy everyday to see my friends and to just be at work it was a great working environment and it was in the middle of downtown. Best set of managers I’ve ever had out of all my jobs. Only complaint I can think of was that sometimes there would be some confrontation between employees.
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fast paced environment
General Manager (Current Employee), Arlington Heights, ILSeptember 18, 2014
Pros: great food program
Cons: unrealistic hours worked per week.
Excellent entry level manager trainee program. Upper management has a tendency to micro manage, and operational expectations are not entirely realistic or looked at on an individual bakery-café basis.
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Fast paced but fun
Sales Associate (Former Employee), Homewood, ILSeptember 18, 2014
Fun and very fast paced job, I learned a lot. Very friendly to the customers, we're like family!
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Great!
Bakery, Food Line, Barista, Cash Register (Former Employee), Buffalo Grove, ILSeptember 17, 2014
Pros: great environment!
Cons: cant say!
I took much pride in working in a place that actually serves quality food.
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A busy cafe with a welcoming staff
Associate Trainer (Current Employee), Aurora, ILSeptember 17, 2014
Pros: great returning customers, good management team, energetic and positive co-workers
Cons: really busy cafe, lots of menu items, sometimes understaffed
Work is divided up so everyone has a role. Teamwork and communication naturally develop as the day goes on in order to keep up with the flow of business. I learned that you have to communicate well and stay positive each day in order to make it through those rough rushes. Co-workers make it easy to stay positive and unite to make a strong team. Management – more... is always willing to help at the drop of a dime. Hardest part of the job is keeping up with the busy rushes, but the most enjoyable part is getting to talk to regular customers who share friendly conversations. – less
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Long days are the best days
Dining and Dishwashing, Prep Cook (Former Employee), Staten Island, NYSeptember 15, 2014
At this job there was always something to do if you didn't have anything to do the management team would find you something to do. The costumers were also great making the job an even better place to be. Seeing my co workers had to be the most exciting part of my day since we were all a family.
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Overnight bakery management for high-volume Panera store.
Bakery Manager (Former Employee), Manassas, VASeptember 15, 2014
Pros: panera has a very strong training program for its employees, and the benefits are excellent.
Cons: the hours can be very unpredictable, support from upper management could be improved, i had an overall positive experience with this company.
A typical day at work involved making all the bakery products for a high-volume Panera store from 10PM-6AM. I learned the management of a large bakery and training skills. I typically worked with one other person, dividing up the tasks and working with the ovens in conjunction. The hardest part of the job was the heat of the bakery ovens and learning – more... the intricacies of preparing and baking each product and managing time appropriately. The most enjoyable part of the job was creating something for the customer that they loved and enjoyed. – less
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Great place to work
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Osage Beach, MOSeptember 15, 2014
I loved working here and only quit because I moved. A very motivating and fun place to work.
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Good pay but terrible work enviroment
Sales Associate (Former Employee), Raleigh, NCSeptember 14, 2014
Pros: good food
Cons: issues between staff and managment
Aside from the pay and some kind coworkers, I will never find myself working there again in the future. The management as a whole has a poor attitude and on numerous occasions is disrespectful to the associates.
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nice to work with people
Production Line (Former Employee), commerce, MISeptember 14, 2014
I learned how to interact and take control of certain situations to make the experience a better one.

Management always did their job and kept all associates happy.

All co workers were easy to get along with and determined.

Hardest part is non existant

you could have fun working their if you take the time to know your zone.
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Fun place to work but disappointed
Cashier (Former Employee), Mansfield, OHSeptember 14, 2014
Pros: learing do's and don'ts, built relationships, half off of food
Cons: always overwhelmed, paid minimum wage
A typical day at work for me was to come in and usually be instantly put in a bad mood. For the first 5 months I was put on dining room and dishes which was made for two people but 95% of the time I was doing it by myself. I would ask to be trained on something else and was always told it would happen but never did. I was trained on line (making food) – more... maybe 5-6 days and then they never put me back on it. They finally trained me to be a cashier and do barista which was where I wanted to be in the first place.

I learned the basic do's and don'ts of the job world since this was my first job I ever had. I also learned how to deal with being overwhelmed since that was basically everyday.

Management was okay at times. I had great relationships with all of my managers but when it came to training me on another position, it was always put off.

My co-workers were all awesome, there was not one that I didn't get along with. We all worked together and got along great. I developed a lot of strong relationships.

The hardest part of the job was when I would come in and be put on a two person job by myself. I was constantly overwhelmed and needed help but was told I could handle it.

The most enjoyable part of the job was when we had Bread Bash which were our seasonal meetings. Also when we got a new item and would get to taste it. – less
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Productive place to work, fast paced environment.
Associate (Current Employee), Greenville, NCSeptember 14, 2014
Pros: discount on meals.
Cons: short breaks, and low pay.
A typical day involves a fast paced environment with zero down time.
Constantly working to keep up with the large crowds.
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Can be fun
Associate Trainer (Former Employee), Edgewater, MDSeptember 14, 2014
Depending on location, can be a fun place to work. Quantities seem to over shadow Quality.
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A little too fast-paced.
Overnight Baker (Former Employee), Tulsa, OKSeptember 13, 2014
Pros: autonomy
Cons: overnight hours, disengaged management, very heavy workload
Your typical day as an overnight baker at Panera will have you showing up an hour before the end of regular business hours, pulling dough out of walk in refrigerators to sit before baking, baking, receiving the next night's shipment of dough and other foods, baking, pulling more dough, baking, making pastries, baking, cleaning, baking, scoring bread, – more... baking, more cleaning, last minute baking, and then cleaning again.

It is a lot more work than I anticipated. I was fully aware of the fact that I would be expected to be there overnight by myself (except for during training), and I would be expected to stay until the entire next day's product was baked off. The way this ended up was that instead of working 8pm - 6am four nights a week as per my schedule, I would work 8pm - 730am most nights during training. Now, granted, this was during training. I wouldn't expect to be as fast as I needed to be yet. However, just as I was starting out, we were introducing the new flat breads and mini-cakes, among a couple other things. This increased amount of product challenged even the trainer, who was an almost 20 year veteran of the overnight baking profession. The 6-8 weeks of training that is offered is maybe just barely enough for the most astute, and most likely overwhelming for the rest of us.

Management was there, but more or less negligent of what the overnight bakers did. We told them if we were short product, or if we used more than we were supposed to, but management only really cared that everything was baked off on time in the right amount. Not too hands on, not too involved.

The enjoyment of learning something new wore off pretty quickly as the stress of trying to get everything baked and trying to work out a solid order to the baking process set in. Before I left because of issues I was having dealing with working hours, the night consisted of me running back and forth in the back of the restaurant, stressing over the time while trying to manage 3 or 4 different sets of product at once. It was not at all enjoyable by the 3rd or 4th week, and the amount of stress made me dread going in at night, and miserable while I was there. Had it not been for the conflict I had with the working hours, I most likely would have stuck in there, hoping that sooner or later I would become faster and experience less stress. However, the trainer (the one that had worked as an overnight baker for almost 20 years) informed me early on that every night is as stressful as what I had experienced, and watching her I could tell that she didn't enjoy the job any more than I did.

While the work is relatively unskilled (you don't make any of the dough yourself, you assemble product from dough and other ingredients supplied to you), the work load is a bit too much for 1 person to handle, especially with the addition of new products. – less
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fast paced
Hourly Associate (Current Employee), Bakersfield, CASeptember 13, 2014
Panera is a great place to work! Management is friendly and do their best to work with you. The hardest part would be moving quickly in such a small space with a handful of other employees, but on the plus side you create a bond with co workers when your working.
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Overall, it was a great starting point compared to fast food restaurants
Bakery Sales/ Cashier/ Cafe Steward (Current Employee), Jacksonville, FLSeptember 12, 2014
Pros: free drinks, 65% discount on food
Cons: night shifts do not really get breaks, sometimes we'll leave as late as 12 am
As soon as I clock in to begin my night shift, there is already a line at the door. I have to count my drawer and ensure that there are $250 dollars in it and record my findings, whether it is under or over. Situations like this has trained me to hone my skills in expediency and excellent customer service simultaneously, My managers can concur that – more... I'm quick on the register and reliable to serve every customer during rushes, On the other hand, matters are made more difficult when a customer approaches, as I'm taking an order, with a complaint. Also, to my left, there is another customer ready to receive her pastry item. What do i do? Prioritize. I finish taking the order, then hand the pastry to the customer on my left, since it takes less than 10 seconds. Lastly, i handle the upset customer. The division of labor takes place when i ask my co-worker to take orders while I assist every one else.

This may be the worst part of the job. Attempting to give every customer my undivided attention in a matter of seconds with the line spilling outside of the door. However, it all seems worth it when the rush is over and the customers are satisfied in their booths. That's the best part of the day. Knowing we, as a team, succeeded.

All people are different, they all manage differently as well. Of course, many have their favorites and least favorites, but for me it is all about respect. Some managers are more helpful than others, however I know what my responsibilities as an employee is at Panera Bread. Therefore, I do not solely rely on my managers to frivolously help me with my own responsibilities. They have a job to complete as well. I am content with taking on other responsibilities and assisting my co-workers and managers as long as we all respect each other, despite any personal indifference. – less
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great fun atmosphere
Barista/Cashier (Former Employee), Austin, TXSeptember 11, 2014
overall it was a great work experience. I gained customer service and social skills experience.
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Casual work environment
Part-time cashier (Current Employee), Florence, ALSeptember 11, 2014
The work is not hard, co-workers were easy to get along with and management was great.
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fun work place
Cashier / Barista (Current Employee), Rockville Centre, NYSeptember 11, 2014
nice place to work at
the staff is great
enjoyed working there
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productive, but tiring
Cashier, Barista (Current Employee), Baltimore, MDSeptember 10, 2014
the management there is fine. my co-workers are alright. the hardest part of my job would be dealing with the management and rude customers at times.

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About Panera Bread

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