Starbucks is reportedly asking workers to take unpaid leave until September because, according to the Wall Street Journal, the chain does not predict sales to improve to the levels from before the coronavirus pandemic until the fall at the earliest. Yahoo Finance said that Starbucks sales are down 35 to 40 percent from last year, which is not something that can be recovered right away.
In response to the lower numbers, Starbucks will seemingly be cutting workers' hours. Starbucks employees will be notified of their reduced hours and options in the coming weeks. Per INSIDER, their options will be the "choice to quit, take a leave of absence, or continue working for the coffee giant—understanding that they may face reduced hours, due to stores' shortened hours and modified operations."
The Wall Street Journal report explained that Starbucks was "seeking to cut the number of hours so it can qualify for insurance coverage given the reductions."
In early May, Starbucks announced a plan to gradually re-open stores in June. Still, some Starbucks locations will only be offering services for drive-thru, delivery, and pickup in due to safety concerns.
Starbucks Executive Vice President Rossann Williams said in a letter to employees last week that the coffee chain's numbers are impacted because of customer behavior. "Customer routines and occasions have changed, for all retailers," she said.
We've reached out to Starbucks for comment and will update this post as we hear back.
Meanwhile, this nostalgia for Starbucks is having a huge economic impact in other industries, too. While people are missing going into their coffee shops for their morning drinks, resellers are taking advantage of that by up-selling Starbucks merch and cups online.
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