image source, Getty Images

Asian food chain Itsu has announced all in-store workers will get an 11% wage increase from 17 September.

The change will boost pay for 1,000 employees at the company’s 72 stores across the UK.

Many firms are scrambling to retain staff with some supermarkets offering recruitment perks.

Ocado, Aldi and Waitrose have all increased driver wages, and Tesco has offered £1,000 joining bonuses.

The pay rise will boost entry-level pay to a minimum £10.40 per hour at the chain.

Julian Metcalfe, founder of Itsu, said: “Our team members are the heart of our business and the face of our brand for our customers in-store.”

“This announcement will only increase the number of people that want to join [Itsu]”, he added.

Job vacancies have hit record highs across the country as the economy continues to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

By sector, healthcare and hospitality have the highest numbers of vacancies, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The hospitality sector has 134,000 vacancies, with many businesses reporting that openings are hard to fill.

Some restaurants are closing on certain days or reducing their opening hours.

According to industry bodies, one in five workers has left the sector during the pandemic, with Brexit often blamed for making the situation worse.

The number of total vacancies in the three months to August rose above one million for the first time since the Office for National Statistics began such records in 2001.

A countrywide shortage of workers that is affecting supply chains across Britain could last for up to two years, according to the business body, the Confederation of British Industry.

The CBI said the shortages would harm the UK’s economic recovery and that the government should adopt a more flexible policy on immigration to tackle the problem.

A Scottish hospitality group found a novel way to bolster recruitment by offering new applicants a Covid jab while they apply.

Signature Pubs, which owns 24 venues in Scotland, said it needs to hire about 120 people due to staff shortages across the country.

Director Nic Wood said many venues were struggling to keep the doors open.

He told BBC Scotland: “There’s definitely a huge shortage of people just now in our industry.

“Venues don’t have the volume of staff they had before and therefore they’re having to pick the hours they open.”

The Scottish Hospitality Group (SHG) is calling on anyone over 50, with or without experience, to join the trade.

Read More