• NRA
    NRA We Serve America's Restaurants Representing nearly 500,000 restaurant businesses, we advocate for restaurant and foodservice industry interests and provide tools and systems that help members of all sizes achieve success.
  • NRAEF
    NRAEF Building & Retaining Talent The NRAEF is focused on developing a stronger workforce and building the next generation of industry leaders through education, scholarships and community engagement.
  • NRA Show
    NRA Show May 16-19, 2015 As the international foodservice marketplace, the NRA Show provides unparalleled opportunities for buyers and sellers to come together, conduct business and learn from each other.
  • ServSafe
    ServSafe Minimize Risk. Maximize Protection. For over 40 years, ServSafe® training programs have delivered the knowledge, leadership and protection that have earned the trust and confidence of business leaders everywhere.
  • Edge
    Edge Edge℠ Prepaid Discover® Card Simplify payroll processes, realize cost savings and improve productivity while providing a valuable financial tool that is uniquely tailored to fit your employees’ lifestyle.

National Restaurant Association - Restaurant Job Growth Hits 17-Year High in 2012

Skip to navigation Skip to content

We've updated our website to make your information more secure. To ensure your experience is not interrupted, download the latest version of your web browser.  read more

Pressroom

Share:
Email Print

National Restaurant Association: Restaurant Job Growth Hits 17-Year High in 2012, Is Third-Largest Job Creator into 2013

Contact: Annika Stensson (202) 973-3677, Rachel Salabes (202) 331-5997

(Washington, D.C.) The restaurant industry added jobs at double the rate of the overall economy in 2012, and the National Restaurant Association (NRA) expects this trend to continue in 2013.  Eating and drinking places added jobs at a robust 3.4 percent rate last year, the strongest increase in 17 years, according to NRA’s analysis of new figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).  The restaurant industry is the third-largest private-sector job creator since the employment recovery began in March 2010.
 
The solid restaurant industry job growth in 2012 represented the 13th consecutive year in which restaurant job growth outpaced the overall economy. Overall, restaurant employment currently stands 441,000 jobs above its high-point before the recession, while the overall economy is still down 3.2 million jobs from the pre-recession peak.
 
“The sizable disparity in 2012 job growth marked the continuation of a long-term trend,” said Bruce Grindy, chief economist for the National Restaurant Association.  “In fact, during the last 13 years, the number of eating-and-drinking-place jobs jumped 25 percent, while total U.S. employment rose by only 4 percent.”
 
The NRA expects restaurants to add jobs at a 2.7 percent rate in 2013, a full percentage-point above the projected 1.7 percent gain in total employment.  Employment gains will continue to be driven by growth in the number of locations, as well as existing restaurants staffing up to meet an improving business environment.
 
“The projected 2013 gain will represent the 14th consecutive year in which restaurant industry job growth outpaces the overall economy, and the third consecutive year in which the industry registered job growth in excess of 2.5 percent,” Grindy added.  “In comparison, the overall economy hasn’t posted job growth above 2.5 percent since 1998.”
 
With the release of the February 1 jobs report, BLS included revisions that gave a clearer picture of employment trends during and after the recession.  Restaurant employment fell 3.9 percent during the recession, while the overall economy lost 6.3 percent of its employment base. 
 
“The restaurant industry was certainly not immune from the effects of the Great Recession, with job losses in 2009 and 2010 representing just the second and third years on record that the industry cut staffing levels,” said Grindy.  “However, the restaurant industry bounced back quickly after the recession, with January’s employment level up 8.8 percent from the bottom of the cycle.  In comparison, total U.S. employment is only up 4.3 percent from the recession trough.”  
 
Job growth within the restaurant industry was broad-based on 2012, with several of the major segments registering strong gains.  Snack and nonalcoholic beverage bars – including coffee, donut and ice cream shops – set the pace with a robust 4.9 percent employment gain.  Foodservice contactors (4.8 percent), quickservice restaurants (4.1 percent) and fullservice restaurants (3.0 percent) also added jobs at rates well above the overall economy in 2012. 
 
Eating and drinking places (restaurants and bars) are the primary component of the restaurant industry, and account for roughly three-fourths of the total restaurant and foodservice workforce.  The restaurant and foodservice industry remains the nation’s second largest private-sector employer with its workforce of 13.1 million.


 



###

Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 990,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of more than 13.5 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry's largest trade show (NRA Show May 16-19, 2015, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart); as well as the Kids LiveWell program promoting healthful kids' menu options. For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurantsFacebook and YouTube.

 

▲ Back to Top

We're glad you're here!®

® 2012-2013 National Restaurant Association. All rights reserved.

2055 L St. NW, Suite 700, Washington, DC 20036
(202) 331-5900 | (800) 424-5156