Florida McDonald’s offers applicants $50 to show up to interview

TAMPA, Fla. — As businesses struggle to hire employees, a Florida McDonald’s tried to lure potential workers with an incentive -- $50 to show up to an interview.

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The sign earlier in April on a Tampa McDonald’s read: “Get $50 for interview.”

Blake Casper, who owns that and 60 other McDonald’s locations in the Tampa Bay area, said the sign surprisingly did not attract applicants, Business Insider reported.

“At this point, if we can’t keep our drive-thrus moving, then I’ll pay $50 for an interview,” Casper said.

He said he has had more success finding workers through referrals, text message applications and signing bonuses.

Some reasons for the difficulty in hiring are that would-be workers are worried about COVID-19, can’t work because they have to care for a child, or prefer the unemployment benefits which are significantly higher amid the pandemic.

A March survey of members by the National Federation of Independent Business found that 42% had job openings they couldn’t fill. Owners cited higher unemployment benefits as one factor. A study released last month by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that a 10% increase in unemployment benefits during the pandemic led to a 3.6% drop in job applications.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.