Shift availability drops by almost 80% in a month

By Alice Leader contact

- Last updated on GMT

Soldiering on: Wagestream predicts the sector will see a huge boom when the pandemic blows over after so much homeworking
Soldiering on: Wagestream predicts the sector will see a huge boom when the pandemic blows over after so much homeworking

Related tags: Coronavirus, UnitedWeStand

The number of shifts available to workers in the hospitality industry has fallen 76.6% in the past month, showing the impact Covid-19 has had on the sector, new research shows.

According to analysis by Wagestream, the industry has been forced into a radical decline since the pandemic forced everyone’s lives to change, with the sector experiencing almost an 80% drop in workforce.  

But, it is still soldiering on despite now relying on takeaway meals and doorstep delivery. 

Wagestream CEO and co-founder Peter Briffett said: “The hospitality sector has been hit hard and everything possible needs to be done to help preserve its ability to bounce back when the pandemic loosens its grip on the economy.”

Huge boom due

Wagestream works with businesses across the leisure, pub, bar and restaurant sector. It is able to see work patterns of 36,000 hospitality sector workers who would typically fill 120,000 shifts each week. 

It used aggregate data from multiple workforce management systems to compare the number of shifts available to staff on Sunday 22 March – two days after the Prime Minister told restaurants and pubs to close – compared to one month before.

And the analysis showed the industry had seen a severe decline in work availability.

Briffett continued: “After so much home working, the hospitality sector is one of the industries set for a huge boom when life starts to return to normal.

“It would be a crying shame if businesses were needlessly lost and unable to benefit when that time comes.”

Do our bit

However, Wagestream has created a solution designed to help fund staff while the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) kicks in.

It will pay furloughed workers 50% of their accrued ‘furloughed pay’ on demand, to help them bridge the gap until the Government is able to distribute funds. 

According to Wagestream, reimbursements through the CJRS are unlikely to be paid by the HMRC to participating employers for weeks, during which time those businesses will have to cover furloughed workers’ wages.

With millions of people, nationwide, facing mortgage payments, rent and utility bills throughout the month, there is an immediate need to release funds to workers and spare their employers significant cash flow problems.

Briffett continued: “We will continue to do our bit and we would urge all hospitality businesses to consider using this solution to ease their own cash-flow problems and help the sector’s furloughed workers cover their bills and expenses.”

Related topics: UnitedWeStand

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