Industry News | January 21, 2009

With Expansion Comes New Training

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CKE Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:CKR - News) is improving its management training by instituting Star Academy training centers for its Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s chains. In addition, the company is also improving its restaurant-level employee training by rolling out a Web-based Learning Management System designed to improve, simplify, standardize, and more effectively measure in-restaurant training for its employees. In support of significant systemwide anticipated growth, the company will also provide both its domestic and international franchisees with access to Star Academy training and the Web-based Learning Management System.

Based at Carl’s Jr.’s headquarters in Carpinteria, California, and Hardee’s headquarters in St. Louis, the Star Academy training centers significantly upgrade the training centers in those offices. Star Academy will take an MBA-style approach, providing extensive management-level instructional classroom development and training for both brands. The academies will offer a full complement of courses for field operations management, centered on business planning and including, coaching, communication, time management, understanding leadership styles, and career pathing.

The Web-based Learning Management System will provide expanded and standardized in-store restaurant training and accountability both domestically and internationally. The training will focus on all aspects of working in Carl’s Jr. or Hardee’s restaurants, including quality assurance, guest service, food quality, cleanliness, friendliness, and drive-thru service. The courses will be available round the clock on the Internet and in the restaurant. As individuals log on and take the offered courses, the restaurant's general manager and the training department will have a record of who has completed which courses and who needs to take or retake them.

Star Academy and the Web-based Learning Management System will work in tandem to improve effectiveness, courtesy, and friendliness while providing the training for management-level promotional opportunities to every employee with the desire and the ability to succeed.

“Our Star Academy training centers and Web-based Learning Management System are the next logical steps in our drive to continue improving on these key attributes and on our guests’ experiences in our restaurants,” says Andrew Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants. “As the company continues to build new units and endeavors to effectively support our domestic and international franchise growth, updated, standardized, effective, and accessible training is essential."

Neither the Star Academy nor the Learning Management System will result in an increase in contemplated capital spending as the company has already either incurred the associated expense or budgeted for it in the previously announced amended capital plan.