Starbucks Spain launches At the Starting Line programme

With many Starbucks partners (employees) aged under 25, Starbucks is committed to creating opportunities for young people seeking employment around the world. A new training programme called At the Starting Line has been launched in stores in Madrid and Barcelona. Its aim is to recruit, train and retain young talent – regardless of background or qualifications.

At the Starting Line is launching with the help of Fundación Exit, a Spanish NGO whose mission is to integrate young people at risk of social exclusion. This new programme offers workplace and skills training, followed by practical training sessions in Starbucks stores. At the end of the programme, candidates are considered for permanent barista roles.

It has been running since May 2016 when a pilot programme launched in Madrid, which has now successfully hired six young people, with two of these partners already progressing to supervisor roles. The most recent intake has found roles for 15 young people and involved 33 Starbucks partner volunteers (trainers, mentors and tutors) supporting the programme. This team have spent a total of over 400 hours working together to invest in the development of those taking part.

Saul, a 21-year-old participant says, "Over the length of my time at Starbucks, I learnt much more about myself, and developed not only the relevant skills but also the attitude to succeed in a business.”

Saul’s mentor, Paula Andrea, Starbucks Store Manager in Padre Damián, Madrid, highlights: "I am very proud to have mentored Saul. It has been an enriching and motivating experience guiding someone to greatness. Although it was me mentoring him, we have both grown because of this experience.”

Jose Alonso, head of the Fundacion Exit’s training programme, said: “It’s great to see a company like Starbucks make a commitment to the professional development of young people. At the Starting Line provides more than just a job opportunity, it offers professional and vital experience applicable in a wider majority of industries.”

Fudacion Exit is a non-profit organisation that has been working for 15 years opening doors for the future for young people through innovative training projects. Fundacion Exit networks with socially responsible companies and educational entities to bridge the business and social worlds.