Oliver Bonacini Reviews

Updated March 21, 2015
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3.6
8 Reviews
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Andrew Oliver
4 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. Great Company

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Hostess in Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Hostess in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Oliver Bonacini part-time (Less than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    - Amazing people to work with. Everyone is genuine, hard-working, and down-to-earth.
    - Rigorous training - learn a lot about food!
    - Employer makes you feel empowered to be the best you can be

    Cons

    - Long hours
    - Poor notice given with respect to hours
    - Lack of variety

    Advice to Management

    Overall very good! You really work to empower your employees, even those in hostess and busser roles. Clearly passionate about their job!

  2. Helpful (1)

    Not a good place to work

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Server in Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Server in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Oliver Bonacini part-time (Less than a year)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Some of the employees are hard-working.

    Cons

    Don't be disillusioned.

    Oliver & Bonacini tries to be corporate and official. But it is nowhere close. As a female server, I was subjected to continuous harassment (such as lewd comments) by kitchen staff and dishwashers. Upon being told this, management did not take this seriously. It maintains a culture of a low-class restaurant, even though they try to make themselves seem official and corporate.

    Be careful if you are a woman - Oliver & Bonacini does not take workplace sexual harassment seriously.

    In addition, they expect servers to pay for expensive uniforms on their own and deduct from paycheques - these aren't cheap uniforms. It is over $100 for a blouse, which should not cost anywhere close to that amount. They nickel and dime the lowest employees on the chain, such as deducting a dollar or two off paycheques for a meal that we get once during a 12 hour shift, which was a surprise upon receiving my first paycheque as there wasn't an opt-out option nor was I told about this (these meals doubled as a team meeting with the manager). These practices are inconsistent with what they say about themselves as a "good" and a "leading" workplace in their marketing materials. My fellow co-workers had the same thoughts as I did.

  3. Positive work atmosphere fostering personal growth

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Front of House
    Current Employee - Front of House

    I have been working at Oliver Bonacini full-time (More than 3 years)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The biggest perk for me is that Oliver & Bonacini is very much a company that values and supports dedication to one's craft, whether we're talking about servers, line cooks, bartenders, bussers or internship students from nearby George Brown. I've seen lots of the latter get hired and many of the former advance to other restaurants or attain a greater/better compensated position. The large infrastructure of an ever expanding company like OB is conducive to ensuring one doesn't stagnate in their position, as there's a myriad of restaurants in the downtown Toronto area to vary up one's work experience.

    That said, each restaurant is managed individually, and I can only speak authoritatively to the one I've been employed at for the past couple of years. The time off policies there are lenient, there exists a very tight-knit sense of community, and the gratuity splitting system is fair. Benefits are company-wide through Manulife and are very good for the hospitality industry.

    Cons

    I've heard it mentioned that as the company expands, it is losing some of its core values and focus on the minutiae that makes each dining experience memorable. Though the restaurant I'm at is more casual, I feel these claims are unfounded, at least in my daily work experience. Sometimes hours are unpredictable on a weekly basis, but that comes with the territory of off-season in the industry.

    Advice to Management

    I can't say enough positive things about the management at my particular restaurant. Truly kind, relatable, and intelligent management that strike a balance between privileging guests and employees. Though I feel these leadership skills are reflected in upper management of the company, I cannot speak authoritatively on the issue.

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  5. We want to be the best and lead the industry but all our values and promises exist only on papers and walls.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Oliver Bonacini full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    got the name and brand image in the market of Toronto from the days when competition was not existing.

    Cons

    hypocratic values and promises that just exist on papers and walls. Senior management turnover has been unbelievable in the last two years but the ownership is too focussed on making the size bigger without realizing what they are losing is vital and reputation.

    Advice to Management

    Stick to your values and quality of what you do and don't lose people who genuinely care for the better of the business.

  6. Helpful (1)

    Losing Touch

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Oliver Bonacini full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Family style environment, you really get to know and love your co-workers

    Cons

    I worked for the company for many years and have watched as they slowly lose touch with what made them such an amazing company. O&B was always known for their phenomenal service and high quality offerings but it is now more about the bottom line and increased profit. They have cut costs across the board but still significantly under pay their staff for the work they do and the extra hours they put in. They are setting their staff up for failure, the turn over rate has been huge over the last year or so.

    Advice to Management

    Respect your staff and the work they do. They can meet your high expectations but you need to reward them for doing so. Minimal pay and lack of active management will only end in failure.

  7. Fun working atmosphere

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Server
    Current Employee - Server

    I have been working at Oliver Bonacini part-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    One of the great things about working for O&B you get very detailed training of the menu and culture. Very easy to develop good working relationships and friendships with staff. They have implemented a benefits program for full-time employees working there for at least a year.

    Cons

    As with any restaurant, when it is dead, it is not fun to be at work. Not too many bad things I can say with my experience.

  8. Very Passionate Peoplw

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Events in Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Events in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    I worked at Oliver Bonacini full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Everyone in the company has the same goals. All very driven, and high standards of guest service & experience.

    Cons

    Management is expected to work long hours with below average industry pay. Hard work culture, which is contagious.

    Advice to Management

    Continually show your appreciation for all the hard work from management & frontline staff.

  9. Supportive and opportunistic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Events Staff in Toronto, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Events Staff in Toronto, ON (Canada)

    I have been working at Oliver Bonacini full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    The connections
    the people
    the money
    the "scene"

    Cons

    Not busy all year round, quiet times make for lack of employment funds and looking for a part time job until busy season comes

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