Staffing shortage may be improving in the new year but pandemic still posing challenges


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT)- As we move into 2022, staffing shortages continue, but some say it looks like things may start to improve.

One local restaurant said staffing struggles have gotten much better over the past couple of months, but a local temporary work agency, says they are struggling to get enough applications to meet the needs of the job market.

Allyssa Petriello is a certified staffing professional at Nease Personnel. She said they have seen a small increase in people looking for work, but omicron has knocked them back down.

“We really started to notice, ‘okay, this really isn’t changing as much as we had hoped.’ It’s a very, very small incline. But with the omicron, very coming back, we have seen a very big decline,” said Petriello.

She added that the Great Resignation created other changes in the workforce.

We’re seeing a lot of candidates pop up that has a lot of different experience compared to education, they may have completed online, and they’re kind of looking to go in a whole different way,” she said.

Jeremy Spengeman owns Basil’s. Last year, he said staffing was a struggle. This year, he said they are doing much better, but there are still challenges.

“But we’re fully staffed, more the issue we’re finding now as far as staffing is not so many, how many employees that we have, and that we have the correct number of employees, but rather, with people getting COVID Or getting symptoms and having to exclude them from work, we don’t always have the people we expect to have on any given shift,” said Spengeman.

Even with a full staff in-restaurant, he is feeling the effects of staffing challenges even in other industries.

“So I think it was just, it’s a trickle-down effect of it’s not just affecting the restaurant business, it’s not just affecting retail, it’s affecting everybody, which I mean, you know, plants to send us their food, there’s a shortage of drivers issued a distribution… so now we’re seeing that,” said Spengeman.

Nease Personnel added that while the applications from job candidates have been dwindling, the number of companies coming to the agency for help recruiting more workers has been increasing.

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