Pret boosts staff pay for a second time as it battles covid recovery

Pret a Manger will increase staff wages for the second time in four months as the sandwich chain looks to battle widespread worker shortages caused by the pandemic.

The £9.2million investment in its frontline workforce will see 8,000 staff benefit from the pay boost, as the quick service retail (QSR) business recovers from the impact of covid-19 pandemic, having suffered significant drops in footfall to many of its city- and town-centre cafes as consumers worked from home or adopted hybrid working formats.

It’s CEO, Pano Christou, said the move was about ‘investing back into our people’ as the business recovered after what he described as a ‘difficult couple of years’.

Pret is just the latest QSR to invest in its frontline workforce, with rivals Costa and Itsu also having both announced pay rises for staff in September 2021.  This trend has also been seen in supermarkets, with Sainsbury’s, Aldi and Morrison’s also increasing staff remuneration recently, as they look to attract, recruit and retain talent amidst growing labour shortages.

Whilst pay is one lever retailers are using to plug the gap in the labour market, others are also investing in technology to improve the employee experience.

At the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Big Show, digital workplace platform provider, YOOBIC, announced the launch of YOOBIC ONE, an all-in-one digital workplace for frontline retail teams.  The unified platform gives frontline employees everything they need to work, learn, and communicate effectively and efficiently, helping businesses to overcome pandemic-related uncertainty including labour force shortages amid the great resignation and rising costs — all while pivoting into new business models and striving to provide compelling experiences for consumers.

“YOOBIC ONE is a natural product of YOOBIC’s unwavering commitment to driving customer satisfaction, supporting business growth, and creating a better everyday experience that makes frontline work more attractive to employees,” said Fabrice Haiat, CEO and co-founder of YOOBIC. “Our powerful new features are a real game-changer for frontline teams and their managers. We’re giving managers a real-time view of all relevant performance metrics, and equipping them to make smarter and more responsive decisions as they navigate the fast-changing retail environment.”


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