Tucson, AZ

Local Pizza Chain Closing 2 Locations

Greyson F

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There are fewer pizza options open in town.Alan Hardman/Unsplash

It’s been an uphill battle for the entire restaurant industry throughout much of the last year. From forced COVID shutdowns to problems with food distribution, restaurants have had to jump through numerous hoops in order to stay open. One local pizza chain has found itself succumbing to some of these issues, at least temporarily. 

Oregano’s Pizza Bistro is a local pizza chain, with several locations throughout metro Phoenix as well as Tucson (there are also three locations in Colorado). However, two of the metro Phoenix locations have announced they will shut down temporarily, as the restaurants have not been able to fill a skeleton staff in order to keep businesses open. 

The 523 West University Drive in downtown Tempe, as well as the 3102 North Scottsdale location in Old Town Scottsdale, are both closing town until at least April of this year. Any members of the current staff that want to stay on have been moved to other locations around the region. 

Management is hoping the shutdown will be brief and that they will be able to hire new workers in order to maintain a staff for the two restaurants (no other Oregano’s restaurant is currently slated to close, although plans are fluid). 

Hiring has been an issue throughout the food industry, both here and around the country. Fewer workers returned to their lower-paying jobs following the cancellation of the enhanced worker compensation paid out by the state and federal government. Due to this, many restaurants have not only increased hourly wages, but they have also added greater incentives for workers to want to apply. This has included sign-on bonuses, college tuition aid, plus health care benefits, and other forms of insurance. 

What is Oregano’s Pizza Bistro doing to try and attract more employees into the fold? Currently, according to management, the restaurant offers “flexible scheduling and competitive pay.” Full-time employees are also eligible for medical, dental, and vision insurance, plus a 401(k) retirement savings program. Specifics for these benefits are not provided, and it does leave part-time employees, including those who raise families or go to college, high and dry without added incentives. There is no word yet as to whether these incentives will change or what kind of improvements will be implemented in order to attract additional workers. 

For now, the best way to stay on top of Oregano’s Pizza Bistro restaurants and when the two closed restaurants open back up is to follow the individual locations on Facebook. 

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