Small business owners exhausted, struggling to find employees

LaGrange Bureau

LaGRANGE, Ga. (WRBL) – Two small businesses are struggling to find more employees amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fox’s Pizza Den and Charlie Joseph’s have been in LaGrange for years, but recently they have been faced with a new challenge that they did not see coming. Both owners are struggling to find employees.

“I think a lot of it has to do with stimulus checks that keep coming out,” said Fox’s Pizza Den Owner, Dave Dopp. “The unemployment that they keep paying, they’re paying people to stay at home and nobody wants to get out and work and I don’t blame them, I wouldn’t either.”

Dopp says he and his employees are overworked and tired. He has been searching for delivery drivers tirelessly, but Dopp says candidates will often accept the job and then not show up for their assigned shifts.

Dopp is currently managing the business and also delivering orders in the afternoon hours.

Down at the street at Charlie Joseph’s, restaurant owner Joey Keeth is having a similar issue.

“Well honestly, I’m just keeping my ears to the grinding board, you know, and just trying to figure it out,” says Keeth. “Eventually we’re going to find somebody that’s looking for a job you know, this money is not gonna last that they’re giving away, it’s not gonna last like that and when people understand that then they gonna say ‘well, maybe I need a job’.”

Keeth describes the situation as “disheartening” and says he sees “help wanted” signs everywhere he goes.

Both owners have hired people and experienced no-shows frequently. They are working overtime trying to cover all the empty shifts.

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