Four ways to think about recruitment for restaurant food delivery drivers.

In the restaurant delivery business, busy season runs from September to May. In other words, if you’ve been lamenting a slow summer, get ready: Things are about to ramp up!

Many businesses with seasonal fluctuations adjust their staffing accordingly, and you might be preparing to do the same. Hiring a few extra delivery drivers around early September is a great way to prepare for the restaurant delivery busy season.

Of course, it’s no secret that hiring can be tough these days. Competition is fierce, and workers have a lot of options. So how do you go about hiring delivery drivers for the restaurant delivery busy season? Here are a few strategies to consider.

Be strategic about pay rate.

This may seem obvious, but the first step to good hiring is offering a competitive rate of pay. Do a little research to see what other employers in your area are offering. If you can’t at least match your competition, it’s going to be harder to find delivery drivers.

Don’t be afraid to get creative with how you pay. Restaurant delivery pay can be unpredictable, and some of the big players are changing their payment strategy to account for that. You might run the numbers on whether it makes sense for you to offer hourly pay as well. You might also consider offering your drivers a “guaranteed minimum.” For example, you might promise $1200 of pay if they do 100 deliveries in a single week.

Offer a retention incentive.

Sometimes, hiring a good driver is just the first step. You also have to keep them.

We’ve written before about a restaurant chain that offered a $1000 retention bonus to anyone who stayed on for at least six months. You could offer something similar. If you hire drivers on a seasonal basis, you might reach out to former drivers and offer a returning bonus. This can save you a lot of time, since they won’t need much training.

Explore affordable benefits.

There are lots of creative benefits you can offer that don’t have to cost much. That restaurant we mentioned gives all their staff a $50 monthly stipend for health-related expenses. Workers can use that money for gym memberships, running shoes, massages—the possibilities are endless.

Since you’re hiring drivers, you can also offer benefits related to car maintenance. You might consider:

  • Giving out gas gift cards every month.
  • Reimbursing your drivers for oil changes.
  • Paying for new wipers every year.

Consider more serious benefits for your restaurant food delivery drivers.

Of course, you can always investigate the possibility of more serious benefits, such as:

  • Health benefits or insurance.
  • A 401k matching plan.
  • Paid time off.

These benefits can be more expensive, but they’re also very unusual for this type of job. If you can find a way to make it work, it can give you a major competitive advantage.

Keep in mind, if your restaurant food delivery drivers are independent contractors, you may not be able to offer these benefits. Do your research!

Don’t forget, an important part of hiring is offering a good, safe work environment. DataDreamers is a restaurant delivery software built with driver safety in mind. The driver app uses audio notifications to keep drivers informed without distracting them from the task at hand. And if they need to call the customer or the restaurant, they can do so with just one tap.

From a good work environment to an excellent delivery experience, DataDreamers was designed to help your RDS succeed. Schedule a demo to see it in action >