Restaurants face looming challenge to fill positions before most COVID-19 restrictions lift on May 31 – CBS Pittsburgh
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – While the lifting of mitigation orders is great news for companies looking to attract more customers, it could also be difficult to recruit enough employees to serve them.
“It has been extremely difficult,” said Brittany Sawyer, General Manager of Bridgeville Walnut Grille.
READ MORE: Governor Wolf announces most COVID-19 mitigation orders will be lifted by May 31
With capacity limits poised to be a thing of the past, restaurants like Walnut Grill in Bridgeville are stepping up their game to try and make sure they’re fully staffed and ready to handle the crowds.
“We offered incentives, tried different search engines, job tools, everything like that,” Sawyer said.
However, Sawyer said they weren’t very lucky. About a month ago, they started offering new hires a signing bonus of $ 100, among other things.
READ MORE: Pennsylvania GOP wants to restore job search rule for unemployment benefits
“We also urged employees that if they bring someone in, they stay for 90 days, they get a bonus of $ 250 on their paycheck,” Sawyer said.
On this Cinco de Mayo, which is the busiest day of the year for the nearby Southwest Grill at Moe’s, the owner had to close his Robinson Township store and bring these workers to the Bridgeville location because he didn’t was not staffed enough to handle both. Restaurants. He too is now trying to attract employees with incentives.
“We have always given a reimbursement of $ 2,000 per year to any student. We have increased that amount to $ 6,000, ”said Michael Geiger, owner of the Southwest Grille Pittsburgh franchise in Moe. “We are now offering each new and existing employee on the anniversary of their hire date after you have been with us for a year, we will purchase the latest iPhone from you.”
Pittsburgh icon Primanti’s is also joining the incentive bandwagon. They are currently offering a signing bonus of $ 300 for new hires.
NO MORE NEWS: Reopening of restaurants: where are they and how are they recovering from COVID?
In the meantime, Sawyer asks everyone to be patient. Once restaurants open at 100% capacity on Memorial Day, service might be a bit slower if staff are still down, but they say they will do their best to control the flow.