Wagamama warns of staff shortages as Brexit immigration restrictions bite

By BigHospitality

- Last updated on GMT

Wagamama warns of staff shortages as Brexit immigration restrictions bite

Related tags: Wagamama, Recruitment, Casual dining, Multi-site, R200

Wagamama has revealed that it is struggling to hire chefs at around fifth of its restaurants as a result of Brexit immigration restrictions.

The casual dining chain’s chief executive Thomas Heier says the company is experiencing staffing issues at around 30 of its 147 sites with it struggling to recruit staff from Europe.

A very competitive recruitment market with logistics companies offering wage increases and bonuses in order to deal with the current shortage in delivery drivers is also proving to be a factor, he says.

Speaking to PA Heier said: “We’ve seen a reduction in our EU workforce in particular. But the other thing we’re seeing is increased competition from logistics and delivery firms who are struggling with an increased number of vacancies.”

Data from the Office for National Statistics has shown a 10% vacancy rate in the hospitality sector, which is the equivalent of 210,000 roles.

The shortages come amid a period of unseasonably high demand at The Restaurant Group owned brand thanks to the lifting of lockdown restrictions and people wanting to eat out more as a consequence.

 “It’s a perfect storm of higher than normal demand, with supply chain challenges in the mix and a shortage of staff on the logistics side,” Heier said.

Related topics: Business & Legislation, Casual Dining

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