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Calling all Baristas : How much do you get paid ?

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  • Calling all Baristas : How much do you get paid ?

    Hello guys, A question for all the fellow working baristas in Australia.

    I have been in the industry for about 4 years but today reality has slapped me in the face very hard.
    I am currently working in the Parramatta area making about 5-6kilos from 7am-11am with 2 other people helping out on the 1 machine so 3 all up (1 shots,1milk and pour, 1 help pour and lid and hand over).

    I am 21 and currently earning roughly 18 dollars an hour. ( I am not sure what the standard rate is but i am pretty happy with this amount)

    Anywho!, I decided to give the big old City of Sydney a shot out of curiosity to see what it would be like to work up there in the busy busy atmosphere. I went in for an interview today @ a cafe on pittstreet. Spoke with the owners and it went along the lines of:

    We are looking for 1 barista to do 9-10 kilos a day from 6.30 - 1.30(their peak time). BY THEMSELVES! WOAH!!
    They want a 2 year commitment, No sick days 5 days a week 7-8hours.

    I had to be upfront and asked them what the pay was (expecting it to be MASSIVE! considering the work load!!) they said they would pay me what they think I am worth but currently everyone is on a different rate blah blah buisness is business.

    They then asked me what i was hoping to get and i said Urrrmm.. $20 an hour cash in hand? and they were shocked and said that I would have to really step up my game and show that I am worth that much because that is alot.

    I then thanked them and told them i would think about it because WOW that is a very very big commitment and right now I dont think that is really worth it for me.

    What do you guys think? Is this a standard thing for the Barista in the city? I think this is insane and i was really admiring the barista that was currently on at the time. I had quick chat with him and asked him what ppl were like around the city and he said " people order their coffee today and they want it yesterday." lol

  • #2
    Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

    I did a few shifts just over a year ago in a small shop in a shopping complex in the inner west.

    I made nowhere near that much an hour.
    (I was keeping Centrelink happy and playing with a commercial machine so it didnt matter much at the time.)

    If it did matter to me and I was you Id stay where I am.

    Think about it.
    - Double the beans.
    - 1/3 the hands.
    - More hours.

    Only $2 an hour more?
    Not worth it.


    • #3
      Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

      I guess I just came out of shock  ;D but i spoke with my mum about it and she helped me brain storm it abit and she too advised me to stay where I currently am.

      I am new to this whole business talk and dealing with people when it comes to money etc and working out deals, thus why i made a thread about it.

      My current boss warned me everywhere you go is gonna be the same
      I was bored and it got repetitive which is why i got curious and went sniffing around for another cafe.
      Im confused  :-/ ...

      Although id like to keep this on the main topic : What are you baristas earning? Apprently the standard rate should be $21.55 at the age of 20+ on the books.


      • #4
        Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

        My suggestion is if you are that good, take award rates which are circa $18 per hour and negotiate a percentage of every cup you can increase their average coffee sales by....

        Win/Win situation, no?


        • #5
          Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

          Hi Kwax, I hope you dont mind me adding my question/comments to the good ones above...

          What is it that you would like to achieve by leaving your current job? If its money, then it doesnt sound like the job in pitt st. will take care of that, particularly if you take into account travel; if its experience/knowledge then you may get it there, though you might ask some further questions along those lines. Whatever motivates you, I would suggest that you try and make your next step something that takes you closer to achieving your goals.


          • #6
            Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

            I dont think I am capable of doin 10 kilos by myself.

            What did I want to achieve by leaving my current job? well, I wanted to learn more and experience more and at the same time i wanted to get paid more for doing that.

            But somewhere along the line... I think My passion for coffee issnt as hot as it use to be 1 year ago.
            IM so drained, I feel I need a change so i went looking for another cafe but i think I am slowly discovering that I need to change my career. maybe study? :-/

            Lol, Gee I realised the topic title doesnt even relate to what im going on about. Gawd im confused.


            • #7
              Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

              Ever thought of becoming a chef?

              Not much glory or glamour, but at the end of the day, passion is passion no?


              • #8
                Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                Be gentle with yourself kwax. Im 54 and happily confused most of the time!

                Take a moment to read WotBs signature line.


                • #9
                  Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                  Hi Kwax

                  I appreciate your open-ness and honesty about your experiences...seems welcome in the thread no matter what you called it. Feel free to explore it any way you want here.

                  Good to hear of your journey to find what you want

                  Good luck


                  • #10
                    Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                    If you love what you do youre bound to get stale at some point. I went through the same thing in my industry (hairdressing), I quit for 9 months & realised i missed it every day. Came back to the industry and started up my own shop. 4 years later am onto my second bigger shop and love going to work every day. Am now just trying to workout how to add my other love (coffee) as an addition to the shop. Its all good...taking the break was the best thing that ever happened to my career.


                    • #11
                      Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                      Hey Kwax,

                      Why havent I seen you around in the past year eh? Be sure to come along to the NSW comp in mid nov and we might be able to put some spark back into making coffee

                      As for rates, you can expect to earn:
                      - between $17-$22 mon/fri, $23 sat, $25 sun - on the books [edit: sat ~ base x 1.25, sun ~ base x 1.5]
                      - $1 less for cash in hand, bear in mind on the books your employer pays an additional 9% super so dont stoop too low just cos its cash
                      - As for charging out, if you are worth your weight either in crazy speed/efficiency or high quality, you could expect to earn between $23-$28 mon-sun charging out with an ABN. Bear in mind here that you then need to pay tax, hence the higher rates. Downside here is you dont get that 9% employer super contribution. But some employers will prefer this. So in short, your $25 per hour is equal to about $22.50 after tax and you dont get that ~$2.00 in your super.

                      If you reckon you could do 10kgs by yourself and i were an employer, id rather pay you $30 than two baristas $20 each... use leverage if you got it!

                      But for now, why dont you try to find a cafe or coffee environment that is concerned not with huge kgs, but with high quality? Of course speed will always be a factor, but that comes with time.


                      • #12
                        Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                        Hello Kwax,
                        Im not in the coffee industry, and if I was, there would only be one place I would work at, but thats another story.
                        As Dennis said, dont be so hard on yourself. Your 20, and thinking about the future, so, thats a good thing isnt it?
                        Im 38, have had 40, yes 40 + Jobs since i left school at 15, which i regret.
                        You on the other hand, have gotten yourself into something that brings pleasure to peoples lives. Whereas, I give out parking tickets...
                        To be an accomplished Barista is something that I can only dream about, its a trade/skill that can take you anywhere in the world that you wish to go...

                        Although it may be tough at the moment, go to the Barista comps, and you get that spark back again, think of the future, and where you could be in the next 5-10 years...Which country could you be in doing what you love. The 2003 WBC Paul Bassett would have started where you are now, had the same doubts/feelings, but look where he went, and what he achieved...

                        If its something that you enjoy doing, then never give up, and Always follow your dreams,

                        My 3 Cents,


                        • #13
                          Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa


                          Baristas stay as baristas mostly because they love making a good coffee and the joy of sharing it, not because they love the money. Having said that, I know of only a handful of baristas that earn really good money as working line baristas and they really give as much of themselves as humanly possible if not moreso for a company that is really quite perfectionist. Their pay and their employers attitude is an exception to the rule.

                          Wages in most normal cafes wont rise much more unless we see an overall price increase in our product but the very healthy competition around that we have everywhere tends to keep prices capped far more than other things like petrol and groceries. Keep in mind too that you are also limited by the number of coffees sold and the cost per coffee so your wage reflects an average coffee price range of 3.00 - 4.00.

                          So unless you move elsewhere in the field of coffee, or go onto business ownership I dont see how you can expect to earn substantially more while working in the position that you are in. I must also add that you should be capable of handling the 5-6kg in 5hours by yourself, or with very minor help from one other person. The place you are working at is unfortunately not that busy so you have an incredibly nice boss for staffing it with three on the machine each at $18/hr.


                          • #14
                            Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                            Hey Kwax

                            I am also on $18.00 an hour, there are two of us at a time on the machine, anywhere between 8kgs and 12kgs between 6:30 and 3:00 (but that will drop down soon maybe)

                            Been here for about 5 months now and this is my first job as a stand alone barista- am a hospitality jack of all trades and a master at none, about 8-9 years all up, uuurrggghhh! What i have learnt, and please dont quote me on this, this is from personal experience, is that alot of the work out there is more for the passion rather than the pay, alot of it is aimed at lidfestyle choice, things like that. There is good money out there, but alot like diamonds in the rough mind you Tyeoman has some good figures there, why didnt i ever live in sydney????

                            I too was questioning my pay, have done with a handfull of my previous jobs, but I wheighed up the other aspects of my job and realised i liked it more for everything else rather than the money. This is the first job i have had in ages where i want to get out to bed and catch a 50 minute train trip to work everyday, and no its not because i am addicted to caffeine, i think. Sometimes you have to weigh it all up. This industry isnt for making the easy bucks. I dont lkknow i am babbling right now hopfully i have either helped, or made you laugh at this and not confused you at all.



                            • #15
                              Re: Calling all Baristas : How much do you get pa

                              Hi Kwak.
                              Why not try getting a Barista job with a Roastery, that has a Cafe attatched. Something like Veneziano has in Abbotsford. That way you may be able to get into Roasting and encouraged to enter comps or even become a sales rep.
                              If you think you bored or stale another job doing the same thing wont help unless there is a goal for you to achieve.
                              Regards Marty