Merchants Turn to Online Job Fairs to Fill Shifts

The virtual hiring events include application submissions, screening programs and video interviews. 

April 29, 2020

SEMINOLE, Fla.—Ahead of new store openings in Florida and Colorado, Sprouts Markets has turned to virtual job fairs, Grocery Dive reports. Beyond hiring, employers are also using virtual programs to train employees.

Sprouts has scheduled several online hiring events in May and June for applicants interested in a job at one of the new stores. Last week, Publix and Miami Dade College’s Hialeah, Fla., campus conducted a joint virtual job fair for a new Florida grocery store.

With supermarkets one of the few sectors—aside from convenience stores—hiring these days, retailers have been using online tools to find, screen and interview potential workers. CVS developed virtual screening technology a few years ago and recently used it to host online job fairs to bring on board 50,000 full- and part-time positions at distribution centers, stores and delivery routes.

So far, grocer retailers have been able to fill their ranks, but concerns over access to COVD-19 testing and personal protective equipment (PPE) like face masks, as recommended by the FDA and CDC, might slow down the hiring. Meanwhile, last week, lawmakers introduced legislation in Congress that would exempt the wages earned by frontline workers in the convenience and grocery industry, and their suppliers, from a portion of their 2020 federal income taxes. The Giving Retailers and Our Convenience Employees Relief Act (GROCER Act) would exempt the wages earned between February 15 and June 15, 2020, for these essential workers.

Coronavirus Resources

NACS has compiled resources to help the convenience retail community navigate the COVID-19 crisis. For news updates and guidance, visit our coronavirus resources page.