First Watch Restaurants, Inc. Employee Reviews

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4.0
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Wrong place at the wrong time
Operations Manager (Former Employee) –  Tampa, FLSeptember 20, 2018
Really enjoyed working here as a server but as a manager, between the stress level and hours, the pay just wasn’t enough incentive to continue my journey here. With new management teams, it’s harder to learn from others. Also, with new systems in place such as schoox and newgentek, it’s hard to find answers to questions because everyone is currently learning these systems. After spending 5 years with this company, I can tell you that it’s great money and great hours (as an hourly employee) and easy to stand behind their philosophies and culture if you’re open to the challenge but as for management...unfortunately the company is growing so rapidly they are missing the mark on proper training and seem more concerned with filling the open positions. Do not recommend to someone coming in brand new without prior restaurant management experience. Hope this helps future employees and the company to make better decisions in the future years. :)
Pros
2 free meals per day, 100% comp on days off as well
Cons
Long hours for management, little training
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3.0
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very fast paced, and not in control
Server (Former Employee) –  Johns Creek, GASeptember 18, 2018
I worked at First Watch for two years and eight months, it was a fun environment with great co-workers. It was about an eight hour work shift and it was very fast paced. There was a few issues I saw with the company but nothing I could place my finger on. The hardest part of working there was keeping management happy. Their expectations were high and if you messed up than it was never good. I enjoyed my managers however and we had a good bond. I left because it was time to further my goals in career and in self.
Pros
awesome people
Cons
low annual earnings, stressful
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4.0
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Fun a
Waitress (Former Employee) –  Ocala, FLSeptember 11, 2018
It was fun working there. The customers we're Pleasant. I like how they have healthy food. When you work there and you have to have teamwork. They close at 2 which is a plus.
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5.0
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Dishwashing, Teamwork, Great time
Dishwasher/Food Prep (Former Employee) –  Kennesaw, GASeptember 11, 2018
At First Watch I learned the basics of prepping food as well as working hard and together with my teammates to finish our workload for the day. The most enjoyable time of the day would be when I had to take water kegs to the front of the house.
Pros
discount foods. closes at 2:00 pm
Cons
no breaks
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3.0
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A shame it could have been a great job.
Chef (Current Employee) –  Lakeland, FlSeptember 10, 2018
My store has had 3 General Managers and hasn't even been open a year. I have been a Chef for almost 20 years and I should have seen that as a red flag. The work is easy. The hours are great! But the training is virtually non_exsistant. You may get trained for a couple hours. From this they expect you to be able to work as fast as the rest of the line. I am all for cross training. But they move you before you are even trained on the first position properly which was for me the third day. If they put a little time and effort into setting new people up for success, they wouldn't have such turn over. Only 2 cooks remain from their original staff. Such a great concept with great recipes. I hate to see the training structure bring it to ruin.
Pros
50 percent off you and a guest, No late nights
Cons
High expectations with little help learning, Very Stressful daily
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3.0
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Overall it’s a cool job but not something to do long term
Server (Current Employee) –  Solon, OHSeptember 7, 2018
Slightly racist environment. Ignorant general manager. Manager talks to the servers like we’re trash. Gossiping is at an all time high in this store. Favoritism definitely plays a big role in this company as well.
Pros
Tips are good.
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5.0
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Great Place to Work
Lead Server (Current Employee) –  League City, TXSeptember 4, 2018
The culture and the values of the company are fantastic, They support many different charities, value their workers, and have a "You First" attitude. The work is not hard and you get to meet many different people during your time there.
Pros
Short work days, fun environment, great co-workers
Cons
business fluctuates through the work week
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4.0
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Fun Environment and Team Oriented
Server, Host (Current Employee) –  Lexington, KYSeptember 2, 2018
Although First Watch maintains strict company policies, the rules set in place result in a smoother running work environment even in the midst of chaos. I was able to improve my multi-tasking skills as well as my customer service skills while constantly maintaining a sense of urgency and purpose. I made great friends and consistently grew as a person by keeping a "team" mentality and overcoming daily challenges within the restaurant.
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2.0
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Sounds - Amazing (on paper)
Operations Manager (Current Employee) –  Richmond, VAAugust 31, 2018
Experienced managers “beware” - Hours sound amazing in job ads and on the door, but very early mornings for prep, may as well be an overnight job. By the time you go to sleep very very early and work your shift - You’ve lost a day of you’re life. Very poor and unfair management- No organization - No chance of growth.
Pros
Foods not bad - some employees
Cons
Hard to keep staff - very labor intensive- No growth - no life - unprofessional/ feels like prizon
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4.0
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Stressful but rewarding
Front of House Employee/Server (Former Employee) –  Palm Harbor, FLAugust 28, 2018
Your typical day at First Watch begins a 6:30 am. You will be on your feet all day long. Running around under extreme pressure to perform your duties.
Pros
money
Cons
management
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4.0
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Productive and high learning environment
Waitress/Server (Former Employee) –  Papillion, NEAugust 28, 2018
All workers are consistently working as a team to ensure all customers are taken care of equally within a positive and low stress environment. Managers are positive but base many decisions on personal/emotional relationships
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4.0
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Fast paced restaurant
Server (Former Employee) –  Omaha, NEAugust 26, 2018
I was only trained on the non-busy weekdays. I served by myself for the first time on Sunday. I struggled a bit and it was difficult to ask for help because the other servers were always busy too. I just wish I would've been trained longer/better. I also don't know why they hired me for a few weeks just to quit scheduling me out of the blue and never hearing from anyone.
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4.0
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Which location you work at is important.
Kitchen Staff (Current Employee) –  Columbus, OHAugust 24, 2018
I have worked at three locations for First Watch and each location has a different culture of team work and management. My overall experience at First Watch has been positive.
Pros
Reliable hours, steady work, 50% discount on food for you and one other person at any First Watch location
Cons
No breaks, Sundays are very busy
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4.0
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Positive Work Environment, Fair Compensation
Waiter (Former Employee) –  Alpharetta, GAAugust 23, 2018
I started as a line cook and had never worked in a kitchen before. I struggled with the challenges of working in a fast paced environment. My manager was understanding of my weaknesses and rather than firing me, he moved me to work as a bus boy. I eventually became a server and learned a lot about customer service and the restaurant business. This was a great job to have in college. I learned how to balance my studies and my work life. I enjoyed working at First Watch.
Pros
Fair Compensation, Convenient Hours
Cons
Stressful Environment At Times
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4.0
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Fast paced and highly regulated place of work
Food Prep, Line Cook (Current Employee) –  Tucson, AZAugust 22, 2018
First Watch is a great place to work, all the people including front of house are friendly and hard-working people. The Corporation is very focused on keeping a fast organized restauraunt, there are strict protocals and regulations that are set in place to ensure the fastest and preshest food possible. It was a very fast paced, with long days which made it a difficult job but was also always kept you on you toes
Pros
Fair wages, great co-workers
Cons
Unstable hours
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4.0
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Co-workers were all friendly and had good chemistry
Cook (Former Employee) –  Lawrence, KSAugust 21, 2018
They are only open until 2:30p.m. every day so if you are a cook, then you are generally in around 6-7a.m. Generally I worked 5 days a week 7 till around 3-3:30p.m. Most of the time it is very fast paced, and there are no breaks.
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3.0
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Bad management at the La Frontera location in Round Rock. Lots of staff turn over and little to no support for the servers.
Server (Former Employee) –  Round Rock, TXAugust 18, 2018
Manager would change our time clocks all the time to get her bonuses and steal money from our paychecks. She also was very unprofessional and sexually inappropriate with a lot of her employees. The restaurant is nice, but the higher ups need to get rid of this bad egg.
Pros
50% off meals, good tips, friendly customer, good food
Cons
One really bad manager
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4.0
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depends on location
busser (Former Employee) –  Sarasota, FLAugust 16, 2018
some first watch restaurants are run way better than others in the area, they lean towards hiring females as servers generally, and will generally hire a new face over promoting from within
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5.0
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Fun workplace
Waitress (Current Employee) –  St. Louis, MOAugust 16, 2018
First watch has been such a great job over the years. You get to meet so many new people and see them quite often. Your co workers become your family and everyone gets along. Making cash everyday is just a plus!
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5.0
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They don't pay their bussers enough. Other than that it was perfect
Busser (Former Employee) –  Rocky River, OHAugust 15, 2018
They simply didn't pay their bussers enough, I was making $4.15 an hour and would probably make average $20 in tips a day which is fine if you have no bills and would like it as a first job but as someone with bills to pay it wasn't working with my agenda.
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Overall rating

3.8
Based on 260 reviews
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3.7Work/Life Balance
3.3Compensation/Benefits
3.1Job Security/Advancement
3.2Management
3.5Culture