PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — If you are looking for restaurant employment, you are one hot commodity. Local eateries are expanding for spring and that means they need staff, pronto.
From referral bonuses to extra flexible schedules, restaurants in our region and across the country are finding ways to woo the best and brightest.READ MORE: Shooting Inside Lancaster's Park City Center Mall Leaves Some Employees Feeling 'Not Exactly Safe'
Restaurants are back in a position to expand their businesses.
“As we want to expand and go back to what normal was or full capacities we need more bodies,” said Nate Johnson, director of operations for the Garces Group.
Restaurant workers are in high demand at The Olde Bar in Old City. They are hoping to open up more hours and to rebuild their catering service.
“We are offering referral bonuses to our current employees. If they bring people on they get a check from us so any way we can attract people we are trying it,” Johnson said.
“It has been a process since we reopened but I believe it has been a process for everybody,” said Cuba Libre front house manager Aaron Bowers.READ MORE: Trial Of Maurice Hill, Man Accused Of Shooting 6 Philadelphia Police Officers During 2019 Standoff, Moved To 2022
It’s true, it seems almost every restaurant is looking to make hires all at once. So the demand is outpacing the supply of workers not just in Philly, but nationwide.
“We are hiring for all positions to make sure that everybody not only has the opportunity to make money but also have time off,” Bowers said.
“We are also opening up a huge outside area so we’re going to have about 40 tables on preset platforms that are outside and for that, we are going to need a whole new host team downstairs and a service team and a busser team to join the family,” said Positano Coast GM Thomas Wainwright.
What many want potential hires to know is that this is a job with room for growth.
“This is one industry where you could start off whatever we would consider entry-level and rise to the very top,” Wainwright said.MORE NEWS: Eagles RT Lane Johnson Announces His Return, Opens Up About Mental Health
So why are these positions so hard to fill? Of course, there’s supply and demand. Also, the more complex issue of unemployment benefits and then the fact that some hospitality workers have simply transitioned to other fields.