Basin Food, Retail Industries Continue Adding Job Perks to Fight Workforce Shortages

By Jen Kastner
NewsWest 9

PERMIAN BASIN- What was once an occasional early evening at the Wienerschnitzel in Odessa is now routine. Nightly, this branch is closing their dining room an hour earlier than it used to. The sign on the door asks customers to be patient because they're short staffed. The Starbucks off of North Midkiff Road in Midland is in a similar situation. They say the store has been closing early some nights due to a lack of employees.

"It's a great time to be in the Permian Basin, but there's also some headaches that come along with it," Willie Taylor with the Permian Basin Workforce Solutions, said. Taylor explains that times are tougher right now, since the students have left their summer jobs to go back to school.

"We have to deal with the existing workforce population that is within our community," he adds.

Major hiring incentives are being thrown out to the public. The McDonald's off of FM 1788 and I-20 has been shuttling workers in out and for a few years.

"[To and from] Odessa and Midland. We also have people that are shuttled into Monahans everyday," Training Coordinator, Tabitha Vance with McDonald's of West Texas J&A, said.

The program has been so helpful for retaining employees, that managers are now looking to purchase more shuttles for additional transportation.

"We realized that if we wanted to get our employees to work, we'd have to figure out a better way to do it. We don't want our stores to suffer and not have enough employees," Vance said.

That McDonald's is even offering free food for every shift, starting on the first day of employment. Not to mention, there also a health plan and competitive wages.

Workforce Solutions believes that more likely than not, the Basin will continue to see major sign-on perks at local shops and eateries as the boom gets bigger.