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Help Wanted? How To Hire During The Labor Shortage

Introduction and Summary 

Dine-in service is coming back. That’s fantastic news for the restaurant industry, though the ongoing labor shortage presents a new challenge for owners. If your pizzeria is short on staff, then it’s time to get creative.                      

Don’t just hang up a “Help Wanted” sign and cross your fingers. In this article, we’ll show you how to get creative and land the employees you need:

  • What’s Causing The Labor Shortage?
  • How Do I Fill Restaurant Jobs During The Labor Shortage?
  • Help Wanted? Sign Up with Slice.

What’s Causing The Labor Shortage?

There are a number of factors driving the labor shortage in 2021. First of all, some people are concerned about COVID-19 exposure. Also, a number of parents say that they’re having their own hiring trouble when it comes to babysitters and child care.    

There’s also the matter of post-pandemic relief. With the federal government offering $300 per week in unemployment benefits, some workers were making comparable money staying at home. Whether or not that’s the main driver behind the American labor shortage, there’s no question that small businesses are struggling to hire. 

Still, there’s no reason to panic. Plenty of Americans are still looking for jobs and that includes part-time work at restaurants and pizzerias like yours.                 

How Do I Fill Restaurant Jobs During The Labor Shortage? 

Whether you’re looking for delivery drivers, waiters, or kitchen staff, there are a number of ways to make your listing stand out. Obviously, the hourly wage will be the main factor. However, with a little bit of creativity, you can find great employees at a rate that works for both parties.         

Where Do I Post My Job Listing?

Craigslist is usually the go-to for employers and job seekers. However, there are a number of sites where you can find help. Craigslist charges a fee for creating job posts, but it’ll pay off in the long run if you’re able to find the right person fast.

Beyond that, you may also want to consider Facebook Jobs, Snagajob, Indeed, and LinkedIn. If you want to avoid paying for each post post, you could consider some clever workarounds. For example, you can post a LinkedIn status update simply asking if anyone knows where to find a good short order cook. Remember, there’s no charge for simply asking a question. Plus, it’ll have the added bonus of coming with someone’s recommendation. 

The same principle applies to organic social media. Want to find knowledgeable pizza people near you? Put up a post on your shop’s Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter account. Odds are, you have some customers who would be interested in jumping behind the counter. 

Expanding Your Search During The Labor Shortage

Don’t discount the ability of a fast learner. Let’s say you’re trying to hire a waiter or waitress with three years of previous experience. Depending on your restaurant’s needs, that might be overkill. Instead, you could hire someone with little to no restaurant experience, provided that you or a senior staffer can get them up to speed. Not only will you fill the job faster — you might also be able to save a little bit on payroll. 

Offer a Referral Fee 

Recently, a fast food franchisee in Florida offered prospects $50 just to come in for an interview. Although that was creative, it didn’t yield the results he wanted. Instead, he found more bites by offering a referral fee to his current employees. With that added incentive, he was able to find quality candidates for the open positions, despite the U.S. labor shortage.

When offering a referral fee, let your employees know exactly what you’re looking for. That includes available hours per week and any required work experience. Then, be clear about the structure of the fee. We recommend only paying out for referrals that result in hires.   

Remote Interviews 

As noted above, some Americans are still skittish about returning to work. Meanwhile, others are busy tending to young families. Therefore, you may want to consider conducting the initial round of interviews via Zoom, FaceTime, or Google Hangouts. A quick chat should serve as a good initial filter. Plus, it can be a timesaver for you on a busy day.  

Highlight The Perks 

Whether you’re offering a part-time or salaried position, prospective employees want to get the fuller picture of the job. Working at your shop may provide a hands-on learning experience for a future restaurateur. So, let them know about what they’ll gain from coming under your wing. Other perks such as lunch breaks, free staff lunch during shifts, and flexible scheduling will also hold appeal. 

Furthermore, you’ll want to highlight your workplace culture. Unlike a big chain, your shop offers a fun and supportive environment. That’ll be a big draw for those who have been through the ringer at other restaurants.

Think Outside The Pizza Box 

Some employees will aim for a future career in pizza. For example, Joe Brignoni of Joe’s Rotisseria spent several years as an apprentice before striking out on his own. In addition to working the oven, Joe also picked up valuable social media experience. Ultimately, that’s what led his shop to early success and national fame.

The pizza business isn’t for everyone, but most young people today are eager to learn more about social media management. Meanwhile, your Instagram page is probably due for a refresh. You can take care of two birds with one stone by having employees pitch in on photography from time to time. Add that to your job listing and we promise you’ll stand out from the Burger King down the block.          

Help Wanted? Sign Up with Slice. 

Chefs, delivery drivers, and bussers are just the start. In the digital age, pizzerias need specialized tools, technology, and insights to thrive. 

We’re here to help you beat the big chains. When you’re with Slice, you’ll have hundreds of employees on call to help you grow the pie.  

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