Business owners struggle to find employees during the pandemic

Desy Papper

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW)– With COVID vaccinations ever-rising businesses are seizing the opportunity, expanding current stores, or even opening new locations but those owners are now running into an unexpected problem. Both Ambitions Barbershop and Kikos traditional tacos & burritos opened their doors to the public less than 5 months ago. […]

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW)– With COVID vaccinations ever-rising businesses are seizing the opportunity, expanding current stores, or even opening new locations but those owners are now running into an unexpected problem.

Both Ambitions Barbershop and Kikos traditional tacos & burritos opened their doors to the public less than 5 months ago. By now, they thought they’d be fully staffed, but months later they’re still looking for help.

“Most people are not used to working their 9 to 5 or their normal hours so it’s kind of what we are struggling with,” said, Co-owner of Kikos, Emerson Romero.

He says he knew opening a restaurant during the pandemic would be bring on some
complications.

“People will come in go through the interview process and after the interview process once they are actually hired on, they won’t show up for the actual full day,” said Romero.

But he never thought hiring a full group of staff would be one of them.

“To be comfortable I would say 14 so we can rotate our employees we don’t want to burn people out,” said Romero.

A constant issue many new business owners are dealing with during these last couple of months.

“A lot of new clienteles, we got a lot of new walk ins and we don’t have enough barbers,” said Co-owner of Ambitions Barbershop, Kevin Lozano.

Ambitions Barbershop opened their shop four months ago and so far, they have three barbers, but need more.

 “We usually stay here until like 8 or 9 sometimes,” said Lozano.

Having them work overtime majority of the work week.

“We usually have a full schedule all day and at the same time we have to keep walk in traffic flowing and get everybody in and out,” said Co-owner of Ambitions Barbershop, Angel Villa.

Both owners at Ambitions and Kikos traditional tacos and burritos hope to hire their full staff within 7 months.

“Once we have the amount of people that we are looking for I feel like the actual process of our business is going to move forward,” said Romero.

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