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As the fast food industry struggles to maintain a workforce, how are they handling it?

Staff shortages are happening everywhere, but the fast food sector of the hospitality industry has places like Wendy’s and McDonald’s forced to handle the consequences in creative ways.

A National Restaurant Association survey taken in July showed that 78% of restaurants biggest struggle was recruiting and keeping fast food workers. In January that number dropped to just 8%.

The industry, while still suffering, has seen improvements in recent months.


120,000 jobs were filled in October, but from July to October 150,000 workers were added.

In October of 2021 there were 800,000 less fast food workers than in February of 2020.

50% of workers surveyed said their place of employment is understaffed and many said they have considered quitting as well.


How are restaurants fixing the issue?

Many restaurants are now offering wages over $15 per hour, changing their hours of operation, and offering benefits or strengthening old benefits to entice employees to join the crew and stay.

The turnover rate is still incredibly high though, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 1.7 million openings in the hospitality industry with only 1.2 million unemployed people.

McDonald’s CEO says there have been wage inflations with the restaurant but finding talented workers has been a struggle.


Shake Shack is said to have invested $10 million dollars in boosting their workers wages.

Wendy’s said that while more money has gone into their workforce, the investment is worthwhile.

Restaurants are reducing hours all over the nation in order to handle their workers that they do have not becoming completely burnt out.

Popeye’s reduced their operations by one hour. KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, all owned by Yum Brands, are also limiting their hours due to low workforce.

Related: NMake sure to think about these four things before you quit your job



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