- Domino's, Papa John's, and Pizza Hut are together hiring more than 50,000 new employees amid the coronavirus outbreak.
- While other restaurant lay off workers and cut hours, pizza chains need more employees to keep up with delivery demands.
- Roughly 25% of respondents said they increased their use of pizza delivery over the last week in Gordon Haskett's most recent survey of more than 300 households.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Pizza chains are hiring as the coronavirus outbreak convinces customers to order delivery.
Pizza Hut announced on Monday that it is hiring for more than 30,000 open positions across the US. Papa John's announced on the same day it is planning to hire up to 20,000 additional workers. And, Domino's announced on Friday it is also hiring.
"For anyone looking for immediate ways to earn an income, we're making it quick and simple to apply, interview, and be hired at Papa John's," Marvin Boakye, Papa John's chief people and diversity officer, said in a statement.
"We want to add talented team members to our Papa John's family across the country to deliver food safely to our customers' doorsteps," Boakye continued. "We are in the unique position - as a restaurant that specializes in delivery and carryout - to help our communities through this crisis."
While restaurant traffic plummets as people self isolate, pizza chains - especially those with an emphasis on delivery - could be a rare sector that sees more business during the coronavirus outbreak. In Gordon Haskett's weekly survey of more than 300 households, roughly a fourth of respondents said they increased their use of pizza delivery in the week that ended on March 20.
As a result, while many restaurants are laying off workers, pizza chains are hiring.
Safety remains a concern for workers
While delivery is generally seen as a safer way to get food while avoiding close contact with others during the coronavirus outbreak, some workers at pizza chains say they are still worried about their safety.
One Domino's delivery driver expressed concerns to Business Insider that hiring more employees could mean more workers crowding into stores to pick up deliveries. Business Insider granted anonymity to the driver and other fast-food employees who have been working through the outbreak in order to allow them to speak frankly about the subject.
"It feels like I'm being exposed to the 10 to 20 co-workers plus everyone every driver delivers to that shift, resulting in direct and indirect exposure to hundreds of people a day," she said. "Unfortunately I'm not able to stop going to work unless Domino's lays me off so I can draw unemployment."
"I'm currently looking for work-at-home opportunities but I'm afraid I won't be able to make the transition before becoming infected," the driver added. "I haven't seen my son or family in a week out of fear of infecting them unknowingly."
Business Insider asked Domino's, Pizza Hut, and Papa John's for comment on how they plan to keep workers and customers safe as they hire more employees. Representatives for Domino's and Papa John's did not respond to Business Insider's request for comment, but all three chains have been rolling out new policies and practices during the outbreak.
"Maintaining the safety of our employees (and customers) is our top priority, and we're doing so in a number of ways," Pizza Hut said in a statement.
"We've implemented contactless delivery and carryout procedures (both curbside pickup where it's possible and contactless carryout), to ensure a hands-free experience built around social distancing," the statement continued. "Once the pizza leaves our 400+ degree oven, it slides hands-free into the box and straight to your home. Additionally, we've doubled down on industry-leading sanitization and handwashing procedures."
Read more about how the coronavirus outbreak is impacting fast-food workers:
- Starbucks is closing thousands of cafe-only stores across the US, keeping drive-thrus open and paying workers for 30 days whether they come to work or not
- Fast-food giants like McDonald's and Burger King told Trump it is essential they stay open during the coronavirus outbreak. Not all workers are convinced.
- Leaked McDonald's recording shows the company is fighting against parts of Trump's coronavirus bill that would give workers paid sick leave
- What fast-food workers at chains like McDonald's and Taco Bell wish customers knew about working through a pandemic
Get the latest coronavirus news and updates on how COVID-19 impacts our daily lives and businesses.