With more Americans staying home and taking preventative steps to socially isolate due to the coronavirus outbreak, companies that offer delivery services are seeing a surge in business.
A number of companies have already announced large-scale hirings — such as Amazon and Domino’s Pizza — to keep up with demand to bring goods to doorsteps. The new hiring comes even as various industries brace for widespread layoffs amid fallout from the pandemic.
Officials in a number of states and cities across the country have ordered restaurants and bars to curb hours or close entirely as public health authorities scramble to mitigate the spreading virus. The temporary closures have forced many restaurants to offer delivery options to curb the drop in sales.
For its part, Uber Eats this week offered free delivery to support independently owned restaurants. Surging demand also led to Amazon temporarily halting its Prime Pantry service in the U.S., while some services like marijuana delivery companies have also enjoyed bolstered sales.
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Brick-and-mortar grocery stores, which, unlike restaurants, have been deemed "essential" by state officials, are seeking to keep up with demand as well. Some states have even moved to classify grocery store employees as emergency workers to provide them free childcare.
Below are some of the retailers that are hiring despite the recent economic slowdown:
The e-commerce behemoth announced plans to hire approximately 100,000 new employees to help with the current jump in orders. Wages will also be increased to $17 per hour from the previous $15. “We are seeing a significant increase in demand, which means our labor needs are unprecedented for this time of year,” Amazon's senior vice president of operations Dave Clark wrote in a memo reported by The Wall Street Journal.
Domino’s Pizza stated that it will be looking for about 10,000 employees to support delivery operations. The company’s delivery orders already represent 55 percent of all orders placed, and it believes that this figure will only increase given the self-isolation and quarantine orders, as well as restaurant shutdowns.
The grocery-delivery service is anticipated to boom during mandatory quarantine measures. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Instacart orders were backlogged on Monday. “This past weekend, we saw the highest customer demand in Instacart’s history in terms of groceries sold on our platform,” the company said in a statement.
The profitable food delivery company has not only waived delivery fees during the coronavirus pandemic, but partnered with more than 100,000 independent restaurants to sign up for no cost. Additionally, restaurant workers who are unable to work due to COVID-19-related closings will receive first priority to sign up as "Dashers," thus 'enabling them to meet their financial needs until their jobs return to normal," founder Tony Xu said in a blog post.
The retail giant plans to hire 150,000 new workers through the end of May, ABC7 Chicago reported. This comes as it announced that current Walmart employees will receive cash bonuses for keeping stores running during the coronavirus pandemic, totaling $365 million in payouts to employees across the country. Speaking to The Wall Street Journal, Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs Dan Bartlett said that the hiring is due to “just so much demand.”
The convenience store chain announced Friday that it will hire about 20,000 new employees in its stores. MarketWatch reports that President and CEO Joe DePinto said that “This will provide job opportunities and ensure 7-Eleven stores remain clean and in-stock with the goods our customers need during this critical time.” Many new hires will likely help with the on-demand delivery app, 7NOW.
The wholesale retailer saw massive demand amid coronavirus quarantine preparations and quickly announced that it needs help. Patch quotes a Costco memo as saying “We are currently experiencing a monumental surge in our sales and foot traffic in the warehouse. In response, we are opening up the seasonal hiring period to help us increase the size of our staff and ease the pressure through this busy period.”