Fast Food Giant McDonald's Corp., is reportedly providing its employees with more benefits, including tuition, emergency child care, and paid time off, in an effort to attract more workers amid the ongoing labor shortage across the United States.

Business owners are trying to address the issue of not having enough workers to power all of their branches nationwide. Franchises of the burger chain located in the United States are looking to increase the hourly wages of its employees in addition to other benefits. These efforts aim to improve the image of the brand and attract more applicants.

McDonald's Career Benefits

The corporate parent of the fast-food chain said the effort is a multimillion-dollar investment to support the goal of getting more workers. About 95% of the chain's approximately 13,450 stores in the United States are owned by franchisees.

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, one of the biggest struggles that the U.S. economy has faced is the labor shortage. Even with the vaccine and continued protocols to control the spread of the infection, service-heavy businesses that rely on large numbers of workers are hindered in preparing meals or providing service to customers, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The inclusion of benefits is fast becoming a trend among companies that are struggling to fill their workforce after laying off many of their staff. Restaurants were one of the worst-stricken establishments when the coronavirus pandemic spread. With the country slowly reopening its economy, businesses are starting to operate at full capacity but lack the necessary employee count.

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Other businesses such as Papa John's, Chipotle, and P.F. Chang's have also offered sign-on bonuses and expanded caregiver benefits. Last month, McDonald's franchisees agreed to support training, workplace flexibility, pay, and benefits for all workers.

And in May, the company announced a 10% salary increase for some of its employees during a time where it needed to hire workers to meet the demand. Officials expect the company's average hourly salary to reach $15 by 2024, CNBC reported.

Massive Job Openings

Last month, McDonald's was looking to hire 20,000 new employees to fill its slots amid a rising shortage of manual labor in the UK and Ireland. Paul Pomroy, Chief Executive Officer of McDonald's UK, said it was much more difficult to hire new staff after the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. This issue was echoed by other establishments in the restaurant and hospitality sector.

The Itsu restaurant chain also announced a five-year expansion in June, with 100 new outlets creating 2,000 job opportunities in the UK. Across the UK and Ireland, McDonald's already has 1,400 branches with about 130,000 total employees.

Additionally, authorities noted that the new openings would not replace the slots left open by laying off a number of workers amid the coronavirus pandemic. They said the new hires would be a move to prepare the establishment for the reopening of the economy once lockdown restrictions are lifted, BBC reported.

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