Small businesses offering up incentives to fill positions in the Triad

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GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — Small business owners are struggling to keep up with demand as more people venture out, leaving them desperate for employees and coming up with ways to attract more workers.

In 38 years, Cafe Pasta owner Ray Essa has never had a problem finding people to work for him until now.

“Some people just don’t want to get out. They’re not fired up to come out,” Essa told FOX8.

The Italian restaurant has operated on a skeleton staff for months and Essa who is in desperate need of servers and kitchen employees is now offering a cash signing bonus and competitive wages based on experience — paying more than the city average.

“You have to make incentives to get the good people out,” Essa said.

While walking into Mac’s Speed Shop in midtown Greensboro, it’s impossible to miss the giant sign on the door and in the lobby asking customers to be patient because the restaurant is short-staffed.

“This has certainly been the most challenging time we’ve ever seen in the restaurant industry for hiring,” Shang Skipper said.

Skipper, who oversees Mac’s Hospitality Group throughout the Carolinas, has increased wages, lowered the hour requirement for benefits and is offering a $1,000 signing bonus for kitchen staff.

“Nothing’s off the table at this point to try to get people,” Skipper said.

Just last month the franchise awarded every employee in good standing a bonus up to $400.

“It’s taken a lot of creativity to try to find employees and try to find just pockets of the population who want to go back to work right now,” Skipper said.

Both restaurant owners told FOX8 they’re open to adding more incentives down the line if positions are still not filled.

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