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2,507 reviews

Panera Bread Employee Reviews

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Fast paced
Production team (Current Employee), Tyler, TXJuly 12, 2015
Pros: Great associates, quality food
Cons: As business slowed, so did the amount of hours everyone received.
Great place to work for a college student. Met people my age and gained valuable work experience. Developed a servants mentality and humble work ethic.
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Decent starter job
Associate (Former Employee), South Elgin, ILJuly 12, 2015
Pros: Good training, Great scheduling, friendly staff and customers
Cons: Limited growth, occasional crazy customers
I started working for Panera around the age of 16. It was my first job.

The training was decent. I spent the first week or so watching videos and taking tests on a computer. After that, I was moved – more... onto "the line" where the sandwiches, soups and salads are made. I had a trainer walk me through everything until I was comfortable. Never once was I thrown into a situation or given a task that I wasn't first trained for and never once was I ashamed to ask questions when I wasn't sure how to handle a certain situation.

The hours were pretty good. I was a high school student at the time, so I was unable to work during school hours and preferred not to close on weekday nights, as I wouldn't get home until almost 11 at night leaving no time for homework and hardly enough sleep before school the next day. The managers were very understanding and would only schedule me for weekends. On weekdays that I WAS scheduled, I was not asked to start until roughly 4:30 P.M. (ample time to get home from school and change into my uniform) and was only scheduled to work until around 8:30 or 9 P.M. When it comes to requesting certain days off, I the managers were also very good. As long as I requested the day off within a reasonable amount of time (1 - 2 weeks before hand), I usually was given the day off.

The people were great. One of Panera's rules is "no jerks". This means everyone you work with is actually fun to be around. We did have a couple of "less than friendly" people sneak through the interview process and get the job, but they didn't last long. Despite leaving Panera almost 3 years ago, I'm still friends with a lot of people I worked with there.

The one downside to Panera was that there was little room for growth. I worked there for five years and always maintained the same number of hours. I was only trained to work the line and wash dishes despite my request to be trained in the bakery. This limited the total number of hours I was able to work in a week. The "pay raises" I also received while working there were less than significant. I started working for what was minimum wage at the time. When I finally got my first raise, it was only because minimum wage had gone up. This was the pattern for the next three or four pay raises. By the time I had left Panera, five years later, I was making more money, but only because the state of Illinois said they had to. My salary only went up when minimum wage did.

Customers are night and day. When I say this, I mean that their either the nicest people you will ever meet, or absolutely crazy. There's a lot of regulars that come in. You get to know their name. They get to know you. Often times we would have orders ready for certain customers before they even came in because they were so well known in the store. On the other hand, because Panera is on the more expensive side of "fast food", there are people that will go ballistic on you for the smallest reason. I once made a turkey sandwich for a customer and forgot to put onions on it. Honest mistake. Instead of coming up to the counter and saying "Excuse me, I think you forgot the onions. Can I please have some?" he walked up to the counter, asked for the "idiot that made his sandwich". I approached and asked if I could help him. He pulled out his phone, snapped my picture, and told me he was going to send in a complaint about me to someone higher and that he hoped I was fired. Needless to say, the managers understood that it was an honest mistake and that this certain individual must have just been having a bad day. Incidents like this should not reflect poorly on Panera, as you will deal with customers like this in any customer service job, but it does happen.

All in all, a pretty great place for a student looking for a part time job as long as your aren't expecting to be making huge amounts of money. – less
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run store
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Orlando, FLJuly 11, 2015
fast environment, really easy... good people and good work ethic, always OT at of hours provided as well, but could be a little stressful.
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Is a good starter job.
Associate Trainer (Current Employee), Hixson, TnJuly 10, 2015
Panera Bread is a good starter job but it is not a career path that I would recommend. Some of the mangers at the Panera I work at should not be mangers as some take the position to the extreme where as some do not have a back bone to help out the associates.
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Great ideology and concept...
Assistant Manager/Manager (Former Employee), Bloomsburg, PAJuly 10, 2015
Pros: Great balance of life and work, competitive salary and friendly atmosphere. Always changing for customer/society needs in menu.
Cons: Constant menu changes cause confusion and anger for customers.
Throughout my training at another Cafe I absolutely enjoyed the work experience.....An extremely great atmosphere, family like from management all the way through to the associates and bakers. Once I – more... transferred to my home cafe it was a totally different feel. The staff were all on point, but the GM made it such a horrible place to work (this GM had just transferred to the cafe shortly before I arrived). The company policy of no smoking on the premises (unless in your own vehicle) is pushed upon employees, but the GM would run out every 30 minutes to smoke out the back door, it mattered not the business going on in the cafe. If you spoke up about anything against the GM, it was made very clear by GM that she could make it so you didn't have a job--to both associates and Assistant Managers. The JVDM had been notified and instead of addressing the situation just had other managers transferred to other cafes, as they were deemed the problem, not the GM (an existing friendship between said GM and JVDM exists). Again, that is THIS particular cafe, other cafes I have worked at (while covering other managers vacations) fully embody the Cultural Values and Concept Essence that this brand endorses. I LOVED my associates I had working for me it but it was very difficult to keep associates when they were constantly dogged by our GM. The job itself is very rewarding, you get a lot of repeat guests that I enjoyed conversing with – less
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Family-like Synergy, Team orientated
Bakery-Café Associate/Associate Trainer (Current Employee), Rego Park, NYJuly 10, 2015
Pros: Half price off food, Fun place
Cons: Short breaks, scheduling
A typical day consisted of a morning, lunch and evening group of customers. I learned to think and plan ahead and thought of myself as my own manager and manager of my area. I also learned about how important – more... teamwork is and when The hardest part of the job was when we were understaffed on a busy day. My coworkers were great and were one of the reasons I looked forward to coming to work. They were very helpful when I needed assistance and made my job easier. The management was good for the most part. They had their conflicts but it quickly settled. I feel that my inter-personal skills improved while working there because I had the opportunity to interact with the public. – less
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frun place to work but hours are random
Part-time Associate (Current Employee), La PlataJuly 10, 2015
This Panera is a fun place to work a lot of great workers and managers but the hours that you receive are very spontaneous at best. i have had a pay period were i received 32 hours one week and 12 the next.
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Okay place.
Customer Service Associate (Former Employee), Torrance, CAJuly 10, 2015
Co workers were, but lots of stuff we would run out of on the production line. Many people would get upset cause we couldn't make what they wanted on the menu.
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Decent company to work for.
Shift Supervisor (Former Employee), Branson, MOJuly 9, 2015
I am thankful I was able to gain so much experience in management through this company. The only thing I did not like was how it seemed you absolutely had to kiss up to your boss to get ahead and that was more important than putting in hard work.
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Fun and productive place
Cashier (Current Employee), Dunwoody, GAJuly 8, 2015
Pros: discount
Cons: pay
the job is cool the staff and mangers. Atypical day at work is busy and heatic but the team is able to still laugh and smile. I enjoy talking with customers and making them smile.
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Fun place to work at.
Dining Room Associate (Former Employee), Baton RougeJuly 8, 2015
Panera Bread was such a great way to start off for your first job. I was actually excited that I got the job. The managers were real cool and nice.
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I enoyed my co-workers and management. The job was fairly easy with fair hours.
Line Cook (Former Employee), Winter Park, FLJuly 8, 2015
I enjoyed working for my manager and co-workers but did not enjoy the people that were higher up on the food chain. They created an atmosphere that was all about money and not about the workers. Overall I did enjoy my time at Panera and the relationships I built with the customers.
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Great Customers
Sales Associate (Former Employee), New York NYJuly 8, 2015
Working at Panera Bread gave me many opportunities to meet new and interact with new people on a daily basis. At Panera I've learned how to make quick observations, multi-task in a fasted paced environment, and create specialty drinks.
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Decent
Daniel Junior Parkway (Former Employee), Augusta, GAJuly 8, 2015
Pros: FOOD!
Cons: scheduling
When it comes to working in the food services, I feel Panera is better than a lot of others. The food is fresh and delicious, nothing you wouldn't be happy to eat daily. Although working in food service isn't exactly the greatest job, the managers were great and my coworkers made it worth it all.
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first experience working and the worst experience
Cashier (Former Employee), Port Chester, NYJuly 8, 2015
Working here was my first experience as a working individual and it was also one of the worst experiences that i have ever had. Not only was management terrible but my coworkers were horrible also. there – more... was always some type of drama in the work place and it was never handled maturely. i honestly learned who i was as a person and figured out that drama didn't mix well with my personality. I would never recommend anyone to work at that specific location if any of the people i used to work with are still there. – less
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Restaurant manager and coordinator
Catering Coordinator (Former Employee), Fresno, CAJuly 8, 2015
Panera bread is a great company to work for. Many opportunites to learn and gain in the restaurant business. Pay is not great only if you are in management
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Alright place to work with good food
Associate Trainer (Current Employee), West Bend, WIJuly 7, 2015
Pros: Good food, nice people
Cons: Slow advancement
The management is good, but the pace of advisement is poor. Under pays workers who have been with the company for a good period of time,
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High-paced and fun work environment
Catering Coordinator and Associate Trainer (Current Employee), Virginia Beach, VAJuly 7, 2015
Pros: Breaks, discounted meals, generous pay
Cons: Hard to move up, long shifts
Overall this is a wonderful company to work for.
I worked with a wide variety of managers, each with their own strengths. They were always willing to teach and help educate associates on the in's and – more... out's of the company.
This is a very high-paced environment, where a sense of urgency is desired by management and praised by fellow associates. There is almost zero downtime, outside of sanctioned 30 minute breaks, and little tolerance for nonsense when it comes to getting work done.
There are high expectations, but they are realistic.
The people that I work with are an incredible bunch, full of loud and positive personalities. There has never been a dull moment in our workplace. – less
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loved the customers fun place to work at
Cashier/Customer Service (Former Employee), Carlisle, PAJuly 7, 2015
Pros: had good discountw
Cons: regular breaks didnt complain
at panera bread i cant say nothing but good about it everyone was so nice the coworkers especially the customers i had my regulars come in and they loved me i was always smiling and welcoming them with the smile, the managment was great they were all nice to me what can i say love everything about panera.
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idk if you wanna work here
cashier (Current Employee), Sunnyvale, CAJuly 7, 2015
customers are clueless
managment is always moved around
no benefits
co-workers are nice and frendly
patience is the most fundemental part in this job , because managment doesnt do their job and customers are pretty mean and in a rush most of the time

About Panera Bread

Work Passionately...Please visit us online to learn more at PaneraBread.jobs. Panera Bread is expanding quickly across North – Read more

Panera Bread Salaries

Production Leader
$12.00 per hour
QC
$12.00 per hour
Associate Trainer
$9.25 per hour
Baker
$10.90 per hour
Cashier
$8.40 per hour