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Business Observer Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021 5 months ago

New staffing platform turns focus to gig workers

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Rather than hiring workers the traditional way, a new staffing platform is changing things up. And it's not a quick scheme to get hospitality industry workers back, either.
by: Amanda Postma Sarasota-Manatee Editor

The employee retention issue in the hospitality issue is easy to identify, for the most part, but equally hard to solve: when the world shut down, the hospitality industry was forced to furlough or lay off workers. Now that the industry is opening back up, a lot of those workers aren't returning. 

“They were forced to find other roles or industries,” says Qwick CEO Jamie Baxter. “A lot of industries pay higher than this industry so they’re not necessarily willing to come back.” 

That’s where Phoenix-based Qwick, an on-demand hospitality and food service staffing platform, has been playing to its strengths. Baxter calls the firm, which recently expanded to Tampa, a matching platform for gig-economy workers and hospitality industry businesses. 

“We facilitate workers to fill that need,” he says. “We’re not going after the same people. We’re looking for people wanting extra money.” 

The company provides the industry with three new hiring options: 
• Big event, to fill a need for a one-time event. 
• Quick fill, for last minute shift needs to be covered.
• Recruiting, where businesses are able to hire someone after the first shift without fees.

Qwick has taken up fast in the Tampa Bay area, Baxter says, with 64 companies and just short of 9,922 professionals using the platform since it launched in town August 28.  

The success stories from the professional side of things have been anything from someone being able to pay rent to finally having the financial freedom to buy their first car. Baxter says Qwick was even able to help one person put food on the table for their family. “It’s awesome to impact people’s lives the way we are.” 

— Amanda Postma

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