Payroll Manager

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at sweetgreen
Culver City, CA

About sweetgreen:

sweetgreen is on a mission to build healthier communities by connecting people to real food. We passionately believe that real food should be convenient and accessible to everyone. Every day in each sweetgreen restaurant, our 4,000+ team members make food from scratch, using fresh ingredients and produce delivered that morning. And in our local communities, we’re committed to leaving people better than we found them. We’re in the business of feeding people, and we’re out to change what that means. Our people are our most valuable ingredient - the heart of our company, the face of our brand, and what truly makes the sweetgreen experience special and unique. 

Our mission as a People Team is to obsess over the employee experience to enable sweetgreen employees to do the best work of their lives. The Team Member Experience Team (TMX) is the first point of contact into the People Team and provides operational people services to team members from hire to retire. The team includes Payroll, People Operations, Total Rewards, and HR Systems & Reporting.

Reporting to the Head of Team Member Experience, the Payroll Manager will be accountable for leading the multi-state payroll process for 4,000+ employees to ensure timely and proper payment, including handling garnishments, benefits and leave calculations, taxes and deductions, and all activities to maintain compliance with federal, state and local labor laws (i.e., meal breaks, reporting pay, spread of hours, etc.), and partnering closely with the Accounting team to resolve discrepancies in payroll reconciliations. You will hit the ground running, using your knowledge and experience to quickly assess and implement best practices which improve our processes and build upon the capabilities of our existing team. 

In order to be considered as successful in this role, you will need to accomplish the following objectives:

  1. Payroll Process Review: Within the first 30 days, conduct an initial review and audit of current processes and practices for our weekly and biweekly payroll processing, identify gaps and make recommendations for improvement, including automation of processes, training, etc. Present your findings and initial recommendations to the Head of Team Member Experience and work together to lay out a clear roadmap and milestones. 
  2. Weekly Payroll Metrics Reporting: Within the first 30 days, using your experience and knowledge of best practices, combined with your initial impressions of our current practices, establish key success metrics for weekly and biweekly payroll processing and implement reporting using available HR systems, provided to the Head of Team Member Experience on a regular cadence (partnering with the People Advisor Lead for insights on tickets/field inquiries).
  3. SOP Documentation: Within the first 60 days, fully document updated SOPs for all payroll processing activities, reflecting use of our new HRIS, UltiPro (implemented April 2020). 
  4. Time & Attendance Implementation: Within the first 90 days, partner with the Sr. Manager, HR Systems & Compliance to serve as a payroll SME for the implementation of a new timekeeping system and practices. Through this experience, document and make recommendations for process improvement within our weekly payroll timekeeping reconciliation practices to save time and increase accuracy. 
  5. Tax Compliance & Data Integrity: Within the first 120 days, lead and execute a full audit of current employee data and tax location to finalize transition of our HR Systems and ensure clean bills of tax health, and refresh our SOPs to ensure continued compliance and best practice. 

In order to be successful in this role, you will need:

  • At least 8-10+ years of payroll experience, preferably within the restaurant, QSR or similar industry supporting a variable/hourly workforce.
  • Ability to partner across teams, clearly articulate your recommendations to key stakeholders to drive decision making, and take a systems view to understand the complexity of our business and how it impacts the payroll team’s deliverables. 
  • Experience leading and developing a small team.
  • Extensive knowledge of the payroll function in a multi-state company including preparation, balancing, internal controls and taxes.
  • Experience with equity and stock-based compensation payroll requirements.
  • Knowledge in benefit programs, and compensation/equity principles and practices. 
  • Experience with commissions programs.
  • Proficient in MS Office Suite including extremely strong excel skills. 
  • Strong analytical, problem-solving and organizational skills.
  • Excellent verbal, written and interpersonal communication skills. 
  • Experience with Ultimate Software (UltiPro) HRIS is strongly preferred to enable you to quickly onboard and make an immediate impact. 

NOTE: Candidates must be willing to relocate to the Greater Los Angeles area.  

What you'll get:

  • Competitive pay + bonus plan granted based on performance 
  • Health, dental + vision insurance
  • Flexible PTO, because we respect the need for work/life harmony
  • An opportunity to make a real impact on the people around you, both by growing them and by connecting them to real food
  • To live the sweetlife and celebrate your passion + purpose
  • A collaborative family of people who live our core values and have your back
  • A clear career path with opportunities for development, both personally and professionally
  • Free sweetgreen swag
  • Complimentary sweetgreen

Come join the sweetlife!

sweetgreen provides equal opportunities for everyone that works for us and everyone that applies to join our team, without regard to sex or gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, any service, past, present, or future, in the uniformed services of the United States (military or veteran status), or any other consideration protected by federal, state, or local law.

sweetgreen participates in the federal government's E-Verify program to determine employment eligibility. To learn more about the E-Verify program, please click here.


  • 401k Matching

    We'll match 50% of your contribution up to 3%.

  • 5 Months Paid Family Leave

    We believe in fully supporting new parents.

  • Free Greens

    Get your fill of sweetgreen with a weekly stipend.

  • Dog-Friendly Office

    Your four-legged friends are welcome!

  • Unlimited Vacation

    Take time to recharge with uncapped paid time off.

  • Office Snacks Galore

    We’ll say it, our snack game is on point.

  • Community Impact Hours

    Give back with 5 paid volunteering hours per year.

  • Work-Life Balance

    Do what you love on *and* off the clock.

  • Career Development

    We offer training and support for career advancement.


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Cover Letter   ATTACH PASTE

All employees must be 18 years of age or older. Are you 18 years of age or older? *

Have you ever worked for sweetgreen in the past? *

Federal law and our policies, as a condition of employment, require employees show proof of legal eligibility to work in the United States. Are you authorized to work in the United States? *



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