Increased wages and better employee contracts improved McDonald's sales, say CEO

The company's introduction of the all-day McDonald's breakfast also played a part

McDonald's, McMuffin, All-Day Breakfast, Easterbrook, Fast Food, Wages

The McMuffin, a staple of the McDonald's now all-day breakfast food menu [Flickr/Fat Les]

The fast food giant McDonald’s have revealed another round of massive growth in sales, with the company’s CEO Steve Easterbrook saying that he believed the company’s supersized increase was partly linked to better employee benefits and higher wages.

For three quarters in a row, McDonald’s sales in both the US and worldwide markets have risen, coming after two years of declines. While many industry experts have credited the US division’s bounce back to the introduction of the all-day breakfast menu, Easterbrook was keen to look beyond the McMuffin, saying lower employee turnover and better employee compensation packages had led to the higher customer satisfaction.

“The improvements we made to our compensation and benefits package to employees in US-company operated restaurants, along with expanding Archways to Opportunity [McDonald’s third-level tuition fee sponsorship programme] have resulted in lower crew turnover and higher customer satisfaction scores,” the McDonald’s CEO told Fortune magazine.

The fast food giant announced in April 2015 that it was planning to increase wages more than 90,000 workers in almost 10% of its US restaurants after a 2013 study revealed it would take seven months for the average employee to earn what the CEO makes in an hour. In addition to the hourly wage increase – with levels set at a guaranteed maximum of $10 (€8.90) per hour by the end of the year – the company also added paid leave and education cost assistance to its contracts.

While acknowledging that the move was a step in the right direction, some labour unions have pointed out that the changes only affect employees directly working for McDonald’s, while the vast majority of the company’s workforce is made up of franchisee staff.

Other introductions made under Easterbrook’s tenure credited with turning the tide on McDonald’s fate included simplifying the McDonald’s menu, removing options that were unpopular or were slowing down the kitchen production line.

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