This Is How Much Trader Joe’s Employees Really Make

This eclectic supermarket's prices are great... but how are its salaries?

Happy Trader Joe's employee returning shopping carts to the store outside entrance with woman customerKristi Blokhin/Shutterstock

Trader Joe’s has quite a reputation to uphold. Its devoted following of shoppers can’t get enough of its tasty original products and affordable prices. And its employees seem happy too… but is it really as great a place to work as the store atmosphere would have you think?

Well, first of all, you technically won’t find any “employees” stocking shelves at Trader Joe’s. If you’re hired by Trader Joe’s, you become a “Crew Member.” The TJ’s team is ubiquitously referred to as the “Crew,” in hopes of fostering a sense of teamwork and community. As for how much they make, Glassdoor reports that Crew Members make an average of $14 an hour, even ones who work part-time. With the national earnings average for grocery store clerks falling at around $9.99 per hour, Trader Joe’s is definitely ahead in that regard. TJ’s employees are also eligible for a 7-10 percent raise every year and for a 401k plan if they work for more than 30 hours a week for three months. And those are just two of the secrets Trader Joe’s employees wish they could tell you.

But the positive atmosphere of working there extends beyond the monetary. Since 2010, Trader Joe’s has made Glassdoor’s list of Top 100 Best Places to Work five separate times, landing at #70 in 2018. Employee reviews on Glassdoor claim that the bosses and managers truly care about them, that their coworkers have a positive outlook and seem happy to be there, and that the benefits are great. One former employee even claims that, while retail jobs are notorious for being unpleasant, “Trader Joe’s makes it actually fun and bearable.” It probably doesn’t hurt that employees get to taste test new products, either—especially when it comes to these delicious and healthy foods nutritionists always buy at Trader Joe’s.

Meghan Jones
Meghan Jones is a word nerd who has been writing for since 2017. You can find her byline on pieces about grammar, fun facts, the meanings of various head-scratching words and phrases, and more. Meghan graduated from Marist College with a Bachelor of Arts in English in 2017; her creative nonfiction piece “Anticipation” was published in the Spring 2017 issue of Angles literary magazine.