El Pollo Loco, which translates to The Crazy Chicken, hires workers to fill entry-level and managerial jobs regularly available at roughly 400 restaurants across the American Southwest. Always looking to expand throughout the area, the regional restaurant chain gives local job seekers ample opportunities to find employment in the food service industry. Each restaurant operating within the chain employs between 20 and 45 associates, who work under job titles ranging from cashier to general manager. Job seekers gain hiring consideration for available positions only by applying online.
Facts About Working at El Pollo Loco
Hiring Age: 16 years old (How old do you have to be to work at El Pollo Loco?)
Available Positions: Service Assistant, Cashier, Cook, Crew Member, Shift Leader, Assistant Manager, General Manager, Area Leader
El Pollo Loco Job Opportunities
Applicants with no previous work experience often meet the hiring requirements for entry-level positions like cashier, cook, and food prep assistant jobs. Collectively known as crew positions, entry-level jobs at El Pollo Loco demand a passion for preparing unique, Mexican-inspired chicken and the ability to provide exceptional customer service. Prospective employees also need to have motivation and a willingness to learn, as the quick-service Mexican restaurant chain requires all new workers to go through a specialized training system featuring hands-on learning about all aspects of food service.
Candidates with high school diplomas and two years of restaurant leadership experience should complete the job application form necessary to apply online for management positions. Featuring generous salary options and full employment benefits to go along with increased responsibilities, restaurant management careers offer ideal paths for professional development and advancement. Experienced workers often join the management team as shift leaders and, with experience and high performance, advance into roles as assistant managers and general managers.
El Pollo Positions and Salary Information
El Pollo Loco associates work either part-time or full-time. The restaurant chain typically assigns flexible schedules to entry-level crew members and shift leaders, while assistant managers and general managers usually must work full-time and remain available for all shifts. With competitive pay and benefits as well as potential for career advancement, the following employment opportunities fulfill the occupational needs of virtually any job seeker:
- Comprising food prep assistant, cook, and cashier positions, crew member jobs involve entry-level responsibilities like preparing ingredients, grilling chicken and cooking other menu items, and processing customer orders at the counter and the drive-thru station.
- Crew members also work to keep the restaurant clean and customers satisfied.
- Because applicants undergo extensive training upon hire, prior restaurant experience seldom proves necessary in securing employment as cashiers, cooks, or food prep assistants.
- The entry-level jobs generally pay between $8.00 and $9.00 an hour.
- General managers work with shift leaders and assistant managers to drive the success of each restaurant within the El Pollo Loco chain.
- Together, the management team executes daily opening and closing procedures, supervises entry-level employees during work shifts, ensures the achievement of sales and profit goals, and enforces standards of cleanliness, food safety, and quality.
- Managers also hire, develop, and discipline hourly associates, in addition to completing administrative procedures regarding payroll, inventory, and restaurant security.
- Pay scales start around $10.00 per hour for shift leaders and increase to about $12.00 or $13.00 hourly for assistant managers.
- The average general manager enjoys an annual salary typically falling between $40,000 and $50,000.
Tips For Applying
Availability and prior experience represent two aspects of candidate backgrounds hiring personnel center on when making final decisions regarding employment. Workers must possess the ability to fill any shift and understand the basic fundamentals of interacting with the general public. Individuals without previous fast food or customer service experience may still gain employment with the chain; however, El Pollo Loco managers may prefer job hopefuls with related histories able to pick up on given responsibilities without the need for extensive training.
Applications filled out onsite generally receive immediate attention from hiring managers. In most other cases, El Pollo Loco hiring requests take about a day or two to process, with callbacks placed to desirable candidates soon after. Workers mostly spend around three to four days interviewing and staying in contact with management prior to receiving determinations on hiring forms. Following up on applications may increase the odds of landing job offers. Call by phone or visit a preferred location personally to ask about typical wait times and general expectations for the hiring process. The Mexican-inspired chain often rewards job hopefuls for persistent attitudes.
Benefits of Working at El Pollo Loco
Varying based on employment status and length of service, job benefits available to El Pollo Loco associates include meal discounts, company uniforms, and specialized training programs potentially leading to opportunities for career advancement. Qualified employees also enjoy comprehensive employment benefits packages, which include:
- Perks like tuition reimbursement
- Paid vacation and holidays
- 401(k) retirement plans, and
- Dental, and
- Vision insurance
Opportunities for performance-based bonuses exist for associates at the level of assistant manager or higher, as well.
Additional Information on El Pollo Loco
Originally established as a roadside chicken stand in Mexico in 1975, El Pollo Loco operates roughly 400 quick-service restaurants across the Southwestern United States. The restaurant chain specializes in Mexican-inspired dishes that revolve around fire-grilled chicken marinated in an exclusive blend of fruit juices, herbs, and spices. In 2009, the regional chain of restaurants challenged nationwide restaurant chain KFC to a public taste test and gained widespread publicity when the national competitor declined. In addition to serving a diverse menu of chicken dishes, each restaurant location features a salsa bar offering an enticing range of handmade dressings, guacamole, and sauces.