Expanded kitchen, digital menus, ordering kiosk
By Robert Cloud
The McDonald’s on Western Avenue in Waupaca re-opened Friday, June 8, after a major rebuilding project.
Kilian Management Services, which owns and operates 49 McDonald’s in Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Penninsula, has expanded the Waupaca restaurant’s footprint to 4,457 square feet.
The new restaurant has a kiosk in the dining area where customers can place and pay for their orders, find a seat and have their meals delivered to their tables.
The drive-thru now features a digital menu board and a third window where customers can wait for meals that need further preparation, rather than having to park their cars.
According to Steve Kilian Jr., who co-owns Kilian Management Services with Steve Kilian, the kitchen has been expanded and remodeled so every order is made fresh off the grill.
“The kitchen is wider, there’s more space to work and the space is aligned to be more efficient,” Kilian said. “Every quarter-pounder comes right off the grill hot and juicy every time.”
Kilian said all the kitchen equipment is state of the art.
The Waupaca restaurant is also part of McDonald’s nationwide Archways to Opportunity program, which offers employees reimbursement for college tuition.
The program provides up to $2,500 per year for crew workers and $3,000 per year for managers.
Staff have to be employed with McDonald’s for only 90 days and work an average of 15 hours per week to qualify.
“We’ve had 50 of our employees take advantage of this program in 2016 (company-wide),” according to Mike Wendorf, the human resources manager for Kilian Management Services.
In 2017, 51 McDonald’s employees were reimbursed for college tuition.
Since McDonald’s launched the Archways program in 2015, 140 employees of restaurants owned by Kilian have participated.
Wendorf said Kilian’s Archways program represents a total of $125,000 invested in the education of Mcdonald’s workforce.
McDonald’s employees can be reimbursed for college classes for up to eight years and a total cost of $20,000.
Another benefit McDonald’s currently offers employees is reimbursement for the cost of an online high school degree.
“We changed it this year so now employees’ families can get a high school diploma,” Wendorf said. “It’s an unbelievable opportunity.”