Business model

The pandemic pushes Chip’s Hamburgers towards a better business model | Local News

The pandemic has forced businesses around the world to adapt. For Chip’s Hamburgers in Merrill, that meant a slight adjustment, moving to drive-thru only. Business exploded.

“Business was crazy,” manager Andy Moser said. “While many sit-down restaurants have been hit hard by the pandemic, we have actually thrived.”

Moser runs Chip’s with his parents, co-owners Sandy and Tim. While the drive-thru was initially a necessity, the trio realized it was a good way to deal with another problem: labor shortages.

“We have our loyal employees who have been with us through thick and thin,” Moser said. “But finding new employees is a challenge.”

Without any sit-down dinners at Chip’s, that’s two fewer positions to fill per shift. The Mosers found it was simply a more efficient way to do business.

But another problem cannot be solved by Chip’s. The fast food restaurant has struggled with supply chain issues since the start of the pandemic. Last year it was the lack of beef. This year it’s chicken, mugs and a cold weather classic.

Cheeseburger from Chip's

“We usually have chili in the winter,” Moser said. “But we haven’t been able to get chili through our distributor for at least a month now and there’s no end in sight.”

Through a pandemic, labor shortages and supply chain issues, Andy and his parents adapt to it all – serving their famous burgers to a steady stream of customers.

“There’s just this cult following that I can’t explain but it’s pretty awesome.”