Normally in a down economy, the laid-off might find work tending bar or waiting tables, or shucking corn or something like that. But this recession is so widespread across all industries that even the traditional fallbacks aren’t there.
So far restaurant jobs have only fallen a little bit, but that will likely accelerate — beyond that, as more people lose their cush office jobs, the competition for these few positions heats up.
WSJ: Nationwide, companies with low-wage jobs report a surge of such applicants. Noodles & Co., a Colorado-based restaurant chain, has seen a 40% increase in applications for all types of positions — cooks, cashiers, corporate managers — across more than 200 restaurants, said Heath Grantham, manager of staffing and recruiting. From January to late March, that worked out to more than 23 applicants for each open position.
Phillips Seafood Restaurants experienced large turnouts at two recent restaurant open houses in Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The open houses, which usually attract 40 or 50 applicants, pulled in 300 in Washington and 165 in Baltimore. Savannah Red restaurant in Charlotte, N.C., received nearly 200 applications for a part-time server job that, six months ago, drew only five applicants.
This is our future, America. Noodles & Co.
(Photo via Seattle Municipal Archives)