Dining experience aside, Darden Restaurants said it also was hurt by reports in November that the company planned to cut employee hours to avoid paying for health insurance as mandated for large companies by the Affordable Care Act. The company has since said it would not reduce the hours of full-time workers.
Anti-Obamacare rhetoric guts Papa John's and Applebee's reputations
In October, Darden experimented with using more part-time employees in an effort to avoid Obamacare costs. A flurry of negative media coverage ensued. On Thursday the company will announce that it won't be reducing any full-time employees to part-time status. The company cited the bad publicity around its workforce tests, along with promotions that weren't working, when it lowered its profit outlook for the year on Tuesday.