The restaurant industry remains 10 behind pre-pandemic levels.
Restaurant-specific, on-demand hiring apps can help you ride out the labor shortage with temporary staff. Think of them like Uber for restaurants. Managers can use them to hire gig workers for a single shift on short notice.
Juggling last-minute scheduling changes can be challenging, especially when you’re already operating with a small staff. These apps fill vacant shifts on short notice.
Each one uses an internal vetting process to pre-qualify candidates and ensure the temporary employees hired have a baseline set of skills to step in and fill a shift.
In the short term, restaurants face a ton of uncertainty. Temporary workers allow you to scale up or throttle back on staffing based on demand. This means you can provide the service your guests expect with less overstaffing if circumstances change or public health restrictions return.
Workers hired through these apps are going to cost you more than your permanent employees, both because of the higher hourly rate and the fee charged by the app for the service.
Introducing independent contractors to a restaurant’s workforce means learning a whole new set of employment rules regarding taxes, benefits and hours. Besides federal rules, the distinction between independent contractor and employee can trigger different rules at the city and state levels. It’s up to employers to understand these differences.
Another drawback is that gig workers naturally won’t be as productive as the employees your restaurant has trained on your stations, procedures and menu. Although, having technology that many restaurant workers are familiar with is helpful.
Ultimately, the extra costs and potential drawbacks can be worth it in a pinch.
If it comes down to not being able to open tomorrow because there is no one to staff the kitchen, or the threat of not delivering the experience guests expect because the front of house will have too few servers, then temporary workers are worth it to ensure the restaurant’s reputation remains untarnished.