National Restaurant Association - Jobs & Careers Powerhouse

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Industry Impact

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Jobs & Careers Powerhouse

Get the facts:

  • 13.1 million employees and growing
  • 10 percent of the U.S. workforce
  • Extensive career training for workers, students and military veterans

Nearly one in 10 American workers is employed in the restaurant industry, millions of them on track for success in the industry thanks to widespread training and career growth opportunities.

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Restaurant-industry employment is now 13.1 million employees strong, and expected to increase 9.8 percent to 14.4 million by 2023. One in three adults in America got their first job experience in a restaurant. And while total U.S. employment grew only 1.5 percent in 2012, restaurant industry employment grew 2.4 percent, making 2012 as the 13th consecutive year that the restaurant industry has outperformed overall U.S. employment growth.

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A career ladder for millions of employees of all ethnicities and backgrounds, the restaurant industry offers exceptional opportunities for professional development. Restaurant operators themselves provide extensive employee training. Approximately half of restaurant operators plan to devote more of their resources in 2013 to training, ranging from 47 percent of family dining operators to 64 percent of quickservice operators.

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National Restaurant Association career development programs are producing the next wave of restaurant industry professionals. ProStart prepares high school students for careers in the field, and offers annual ProStart scholarships -- $14 million to date. Our Military Foundation provides training and industry support to military hospitality programs, and promotes industry career opportunities and small business ownership opportunities to military veterans and spouses.

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