How Much Does Dairy Queen Pay?

Many employees at Dairy Queen are in the 25-years-old and under group due to the fun-loving and happy atmosphere. Some managers say the most challenging aspect of their job is to keep their employees motivated and focused enough so they can become more dependable and to avoid employee turnover.

Dairy Queen Starting Pay

The starting pay at Dairy Queen varies by location. This has to do with the stores being franchise-owned and because each state in the US has a different minimum wage.

On average, franchise owners set the starting pay at approximately $.50 to $1.00 over the minimum wage.

With that said, you can expect the average starting pay for an entry-level to be somewhere around $8.90 an hour. This amounts to $356 a week if you work 40 hours and a salary of $18,512 a year.

As an example regarding the base pay set slightly above minimum wage, if you were to work at Dairy Queen in New Jersey or Maryland where the minimum wage is currently $11 an hour, you would probably start out at $11.50 an hour.

Dairy Queen Full-time Hours

Full-time workers at DQ can expect to work anywhere between 35 to 40 hours a week. 

Examples of full-time shifts are as follows:

  • 8 AM to 5 PM
  • 9 AM to 5 PM
  • 10 AM to 6 PM
  • 4 PM to 11 PM
  • 5 PM to 12 PM

General managers set the weekly schedules according to the store’s operational necessity. If you are someone who needs to have a flexible schedule, it’s important to be in constant communication with your management.

If you are a good worker who proves on a daily basis to be very dependable, management will usually work with you when it comes to scheduling.

Dairy Queen Part-time Pay

Franchise owners tend to offer the same pay to part-time workers as full-time employees. However, in certain circumstances, a part-time worker will be offered a higher wage very quickly if that person proves to be an exceptional employee.

As an example, if you are hired to work on the weekends and have agreed to work 10-hour shifts on both days, management will look favorably upon you if you are someone they can depend on to fill that shift on a consistent basis. Therefore, you will probably be in a position where you can ask for a raise within a few months after proving yourself.

Dairy Queen Part-time Hours

Most Dairy Queen part-time workers work 4 to 6-hour shifts on any given day. This results in an average amount of 20 to 30 hours of work every week.

Examples of shifts are:

  • 8 AM to 2 PM
  • 9 PM to 3 PM
  • 11 AM to 4:30 PM
  • 4:30 PM to 10 PM
  • 5 PM to 11 PM

If you’re looking to become a full-time worker, maintain communication with your management and be ready to fill in for any other worker who calls out sick. By being a worker that management can depend on, you will have the best chance of gaining more work hours every week.

Dairy Queen Salaries Depend on a Few Factors

Dairy Queen salaries vary greatly from store to store when it comes to starting and average pay.
While most DQ stores offer their managers hourly pay, there still are a few rare stores that offer a yearly salary.

Your Dairy Queen salary is going to depend on whether your job is entry-level, experienced, or in some type of management capacity.

As mentioned before, your entry-level wage is going to be approximately $.50 to a dollar higher than the minimum wage of your state. If you are experienced in some type of fast food capacity, you may be able to negotiate a higher starting pay with management.

If you are going to try to go this route, make sure you have a resume and/or a CV when you apply in person. Additionally, you’ll have to give management the impression that you have every intention of working with their company for a long time. 

Otherwise, they will just treat you as an entry-level employee who will come and go and they might not consider bumping up your starting pay. Always remember, fast food restaurants expect a high employee turnover rate. If you are successful in convincing management you are there for the long run, you will be in a favorable position.

Dairy Queen Crew Member Pay

The crew member starting pay averages around $8.10 an hour. However, the average pay for a crew member with 1 to 3 years of experience is approximately $9.50 an hour.

This amounts to $380 a week and a yearly salary of $19,760. At some Dairy Queens, there is plenty of available overtime. 

You can take advantage of this by networking with your management team and letting them know you are always available to work an extra shift. If you don’t put the word out, your chances of getting that valuable overtime dramatically decreases.

That’s because they will go down the list of other employees before they reach you. It’s all about communication!

Dairy Queen Cashier Pay

The average pay for the crew member position as a cashier at DQ is $9.95 an hour. This means the weekly salary would be approximately $398, and the yearly salary would be $20,696.

Of course, it’s possible to work a few overtime hours here and there, and a cashier would probably make somewhere in the neighborhood of $22,000-$23,000 a year.

Dairy Queen Cook Pay

Some Dairy Queens hire crew members as grill cooks and prep cooks. If you want to land a job as a cook, you can expect to make somewhere around $9.40 an hour on average. 

This would give you approximately $376 a week and a yearly salary of $19,552.

Dairy Queen Shift Leader Pay

A shift leader at DQ will make an average of about $11.30 an hour. This equals $452 a week, and about $23,504 in yearly salary.

Shift leaders tend to work more overtime hours than most employees. This is because there is a lot of responsibility associated with this position when it comes to supervising employees and making sure the operation runs as smoothly as possible.

Therefore, taking overtime hours into account, you can expect to make somewhere in the neighborhood of approximately $26,000-$29,000 a year, on average.

Dairy Queen Assistant Manager Pay

While some fast-food chains pay their assistant managers in salary, Dairy Queen misses that mark on a consistent basis. This is not to say that some franchise owners don’t pay their assistant managers a salary.

For the most part, an employee with this position will be paid on an hourly basis. For some franchise owners, it’s wise to pay assistant managers a salary when they work a consistent 40 to 60 hours a week because it would usually cost less!

On average, you’ll earn approximately $13.75 an hour at this position. This equals approximately $550 a week and a yearly salary of about $28,600.

When you figure in overtime hours, an assistant manager generally makes approximately $35,000 a year. In states with a higher minimum wage, it isn’t uncommon for an assistant manager to make approximately $40-$45,000 a year.

Dairy Queen Manager Salary

The average Dairy Queen manager makes approximately $46,300 a year. This usually comes in the form of hourly pay at approximately $21.00 an hour and quite a few overtime hours worked every single week.

Most DQ stores do not offer their general managers a salary, and instead, offer them an hourly job without any health benefits whatsoever.

This alone makes the position of general manager very unattractive. If you are looking for a management job and you have experience, it’s advisable to look elsewhere if you consider health benefits important for your future.

Does DQ Pay Weekly or Bi-weekly?

While some stores pay their employees weekly, others pay them biweekly. If you are paid biweekly, the pay period usually starts on a Saturday and ends on the second Sunday after that Friday.

Some employees report they receive a weekly check every Friday. Others say they are paid on Tuesdays. When you apply, ask the hiring manager how their pay periods work because franchise-owned stores tend to differ at every location.

Raises at DQ

Some workers say they have gotten raises within three months after performing well at their job. Others say they have been working very hard at DQ and haven’t received a raise in three years.

It’s probably safe to say that if you work hard at your particular store, you may or may not get noticed and hopefully, you will be able to get some type of raise within three months to a year.

The average raise reported while working the same position is approximately $.30-$.50 an hour, every year. That’s a little above average for the fast-food industry which usually gives a raise in the 1% to 3% range.

Break Policy

Usually, if you were scheduled for a six-hour shift, you will receive two paid 10-minute breaks and a 30-minute unpaid meal break.

This varies with each store because the franchise owner sets the ground rules.

Federal law requires minors who work six hours or more to begin a 30-minute unpaid break before they begin their last hour of work. 

It would be wise to check with your state policy regarding breaks because each one is different.

Dress Code

Dairy Queen will provide you a shirt with the logo and a visor. You’ll have to purchase khaki or black pants and black shoes that are non-slip.

Most stores do not allow you to have an unnatural color in your hair, excessive piercings on your body, and visible tattoos that would offend anyone.

If you are unsure, check with the person who gives you the job application when you walk into the store. The last thing you would like to do is to take the time to fill out an application without knowing you have already been disqualified due to your appearance which does not conform to the store’s policies.

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