Houston's restaurant industry hurting, but experts say jobs are on the horizon

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Despite historic job losses in the restaurant industry, some businesses are hiring, and more good news could be on the horizon.

Right now, it may look grim outside some of the 13,000 restaurants in the Houston area, but industry experts say hope is on the horizon if you've been laid off.

"It's a good time to get back in," said Executive Director of the Greater Houston Restaurant Association Melissa Stewart. "It's going to take us a minute to figure out what that's going to look like, but over the next couple weeks, if you're ready to go back, we're going to have people ready to have you."

So, what's the reason why? As Texas begins to reopen, Gov. Greg Abbott's plan could include dine-in eating. That said, it may take some time for all the jobs to return.

"What we'll see is maybe instead of 25 servers, we're only going to bring back 12 because we're at half capacity in the restaurant," Stewart said.

Stewart said where jobs are lost, new ones might be created. Many restaurants are now offering to-go or drive-thru options. It's something customers might prefer as the economy reopens, which means restaurant workers might get new assignments.

At The Halal Guys, customers can find a drive-thru option, which is a service that's kept employees working and the business looking for more.

"Right now, we're just looking for employees. We're not hiring for managers, but there's always opportunities to grow," said general mangaer Zuhair Fatany.

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