Restaurants see staffing shortage across the country

Restaurants across the country are dealing with staffing shortages and the impact is being felt here in Atlanta.

Governor Brian Kemp lifted most COVID-19 restrictions earlier this month that impacted restaurants, but many in the hospitality industry said they can't expand services because they don't have enough people.

Restaurants like A Mano told FOX 5 the staffing shortages are being felt across the industry.

"It's been tough. We're committed to progressing capacity in a safe way. We're finding that there's a real shortage of people that want to come back to the industry," said Brendan McMackin, the operations manager for A Mano.

As the restaurant business begins to bounce back from COVID-19, now restaurants are dealing with more customers and not enough employees to staff their business. Some restaurants have adjusted their hours.

"Now everybody's reopening or trying to and save their businesses, but bigger restaurants are looking at 20 to 60 employees they need to hire, and it's like right now," said Jarrett Stieber, the owner of Little Bear.

Stieber said they're fortunate to have enough staff, but he also said that's in part because their restaurant offers competitive pay and benefits.

"We try to offer a really competitive rate. We provide healthcare in full to anybody who works full-time on staff," said Stieber.

Georgia's Restaurant Association said across the state, there are between 50,000 to 75,000 open jobs in the restaurant industry. Karen Bremer, the CEO of Georgia's Restaurant Association, told FOX 5 some workers have left the hospitality industry entirely and others are still taking advantage of unemployment benefits.

"We don't have enough workers. Nationwide, we are lacking about 10 percent of our workforce," said Bremer.

Some restaurants have even resorted to offering bonuses for new employees.

"We're okay right now, but we're always looking towards the future. It's a marathon. It's not a sprint," said McMackin.

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