Staff shortage costing Coast businesses thousands
While the reopening of Queensland borders was met with praise from the business community, the reopening has resulted in a new headache.
As the Christmas rush intensifies across the Coast, a lack of staff has forced business owners to turn away thousands of dollars worth of work.
When COVID-19 restrictions first hit many workers were forced to leave the Coast to find suitable employment.
Now the restrictions have eased, businesses are crying out for workers as they attempt to recoup months of lost earnings.
Joanna O’Hang from NuYou Natural Beauty Day Spa on the Noosa Marina is about to embark on a busy holiday period with just one staff member.
Ms O’Hang said a lack of suitable or interested candidates has meant she is turning thousands of dollars of work away every day.
“One lady wanted to book in 12 ladies for a Christmas party but I had to say no to that,” she said.
“That job would have been enough to cover my rent for the month.”
Owner of Noosa Junction’s Canteen Cafe and Canteen Kitchen and Bar in Coolum Chris Potter faces the same predicament.
He has been forced to go from a seven-day trade down to four days due to lack of staff.
“We are struggling,” he said.
With COVID-19 restricted seating and a drop in operating hours, the business has experienced a 30 per cent drop in turnover.
Mr Potter said health pandemic revealed a number of underlying issues within the hospitality industry.
“I think the industry has been struggling for years,” he said.
He identified a massive influx of restaurants across the Coast and an industry not renowned for paying high wages as the catalysts for hospitality’s decline.
“People have reassessed whether or not they want to be in this industry,” he said.
Mr Potter said Coast restaurants would struggle to meet the demand of holiday customers.
“It’s all happening really quickly and the industry can’t keep up,” Mr Cotter said.
“We are going to be turning away a lot of customers.
“We are in for an interesting few months.”