Short staffed restaurants

mburb1981
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by mburb1981 »

A major franchisee for the Downriver Detroit-area McDonald's restaurants has given out bonuses to all of its employees for a couple of months. Despite this, and the fact that I've been seeing hiring ads at their locations, the franchisee's owner has actually stated that they plan on keeping their lobbies closed until corporate forces them to reopen, stating the lack of applicants.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by Alpha8472 »

I noticed that in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jack in the Box reopened dining rooms in June, and now some of them close early. This was one place where you used to be able to dine indoors 24 hours a day. Now you cannot even order to go at the counter at night. They are drive thru only after a certain hour. They also are sold out of nuggets and chicken strips just as Popeye's has rolled out nuggets.

Some Taco Bell Cantina restaurants that serve alcohol and have no drive thru lanes are still open at night. However, Taco Bell has gone entirely to kiosk ordering. If you want to pay with an employee you will have to wait a long time to get any service. Card only signs are everywhere due to a coin shortage.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by DFWRetaileWatcher »

I just came from Wendy's for lunch. Now mind you, this location is in the Addison / Galleria area, where there are a *TON* of hungry office workers.

I get there and they had, easily, 15 cars deep in the drive thru line backed up into the street and it wasn't moving at all. So I decide "Maybe if I go inside, it would be faster..."

Wrong! I go in and there are a total of 3 workers (including the shift manager) in the entire place. There were also a pretty long line to order inside at the cash register. In total, I waited about 15 minutes just to get my food, and the fries I got were old & hard. And the young guy (who appeared to be a teenager) that was responsible for both ringing orders *AND* giving people their food seemed nice and I'm sure was trying to do his best, but was completely aloof as he didnt seem to be able to inform customers their food was ready in a timely matter and kept getting their orders confused. And none of them were apologetic at all about the slow service and long wait times (which isn't necessary, but would have been a nice touch).

This particular Wendy's is normally run quite well during the lunch rush (even throughout much of the Pandemic), so I'm not sure what has changed all of a sudden.

I get that COVID-19 is complicating things, but at a certain point, we need to start holding these restaurants accountable too for their intentionally poor/limited staffing, especially large chains like Wendy's in high traffic locations.
Last edited by DFWRetaileWatcher on August 5th, 2021, 6:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Alpha8472
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by Alpha8472 »

The sad thing is that most likely the experienced staff has quit and new inexperienced employees have been hired. The pool of job applicants has been getting worse and worse. Now you have people who cannot qualify for jobs anywhere else coming to work at restaurants. They may have learning disabilities, poor reading skills, poor work ethics, poor time management skills, etc. Even working at a pharmacy, we had unqualified people applying. We had to hire someone due to short staffing. The job applicants were the worst quality in years. People are staying home and staying on unemployment.

You have to settle for mediocre employees because no one else wants to apply for the job.

Perhaps when unemployment runs out, the better qualified people will start applying again. It is in these desperate times when you have to settle for low quality workers.

There used to be many senior citizens who worked at fast food jobs. They had good work ethics. They were on time and polite. Now you hardly ever see seniors working at fast food places. The pandemic caused most of them to stay at home.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by Brian Lutz »

I'm starting to see a number of places that reopened their dining rooms revert back to drive thru only, citing short staffing as the cause. Today I also saw that a Little Caesar's location in Bothell is so short staffed that they can only open four days a week. I'm sure the end of extended unemployment benefits can't come soon enough for some of these places.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by storewanderer »

Brian Lutz wrote: September 8th, 2021, 8:59 pm I'm starting to see a number of places that reopened their dining rooms revert back to drive thru only, citing short staffing as the cause. Today I also saw that a Little Caesar's location in Bothell is so short staffed that they can only open four days a week. I'm sure the end of extended unemployment benefits can't come soon enough for some of these places.
I have seen a ton of places revert back to drive through only and limited hours the past couple months.

McDonalds even went back on its pushes to get the dine in reopened and told franchisees they can hold off if they want (but it is ultimately up to them) due to COVID. I went into one recently and stood at the counter for a while and was greeted with "how did you get in here?" Then I was told they forgot to lock the door, asked if I had a car (I was walking), but could help me if I was paying with card. They were trying to find the key to lock the door when I left.

Wendy's locations around Reno invested in big banners months ago "DINING ROOM OPEN" and well, not anymore at least at a couple locations I've tried 4 times in the past few weeks during daytime hours. Now it is locked again due to staffing shortages.

Boston Market in Reno over the weekend was open from 2-7:30. I suspect they had one employee working who showed up at 12, cooked the food, opened up to serve it, then cleaned up for a half hour and left at 8.
Alpha8472
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by Alpha8472 »

Drive thru wait times are very long at Wendy's. The drive thru is the only thing open. I watched many customers order and then leave the drive thru line. They did not want to wait for their food.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by BillyGr »

If they are that low on people, close the drive thru and make everyone go inside!

It takes less staff that way, and you can get rid of the crowd more efficiently (after all, when the 3rd car at drive thru wants a drink and one sandwich, you can't get that to them while the first car is waiting for a 25 item order - inside it's much easier to take orders "out of order").
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by Brian Lutz »

Not only is the McDonald's in Lake Stevens reverting to drive thru only due to short staffing, but they have also blocked off the curbside order spaces in front of the restaurant with cones, claiming that they don't even have enough staff to handle those right now. That said, the McDonald's app doesn't provide any way for them to block mobile orders, so ultimately they would either have to handle those anyway or they would have to tell those customers to go through the drive thru line, which is typically rather long and defeats the purpose of Mobile ordering in the first place. Normally this McDonald's does a pretty good job with things, but they must really be in trouble to have to take such drastic measures.
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Re: Short staffed restaurants

Post by storewanderer »

Brian Lutz wrote: September 14th, 2021, 7:55 pm Not only is the McDonald's in Lake Stevens reverting to drive thru only due to short staffing, but they have also blocked off the curbside order spaces in front of the restaurant with cones, claiming that they don't even have enough staff to handle those right now. That said, the McDonald's app doesn't provide any way for them to block mobile orders, so ultimately they would either have to handle those anyway or they would have to tell those customers to go through the drive thru line, which is typically rather long and defeats the purpose of Mobile ordering in the first place. Normally this McDonald's does a pretty good job with things, but they must really be in trouble to have to take such drastic measures.
Chickfila Reno has done the same thing. Everything "Curbside" has been removed. You have two options: drive through or walk into the restaurant and do a take out order. Dine in is closed/blocked off.

Also this week at an El Pollo Loco that never closed inside previously (did discontinue dine in when mandated) it too was closed inside and drive through only due to short staffing. Went to a different El Pollo Loco today (this one has been drive through only off and on for months) and inside was open there; commented to the general manager who was running register and delivering orders that I was glad to see it open and the response back was "I'll close it if I don't feel like dealing with it anymore." Wow.

Situation seems to be getting worse every week in my area.
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