North American e-commerce platform Instacart has announced plans to hire an additional 300,000 full-service shoppers, to keep pace with burgeoning consumer demand for grocery delivery and pickup amid the current coronavirus pandemic.
Instacart plans to bring the additional recruits on board over the next 3 months, a move which will more than double the size of its shopper community.
The company, which operates across more than 5,500 cities in North America, claims it has become an ‘essential service’ for millions of consumers who are using the platform to gain safe access to groceries and household goods.
Full-service shoppers operate as independent contractors and work across both Instacart’s delivery and pickup services, the latter of which was rolled out in the US during 2019, in collaboration with participating partner stores.
According to Instacart, in the last few weeks its order volume has grown by more than 150% year-on-year, echoing recent research by Chicory, who reported a year-on-year rise in online grocery orders of 123%, for the period January-March.
“The last few weeks have been the busiest in Instacart’s history and our teams are working around the clock to reliably and safely serve all members of our community,” said Apoorva Mehta, CEO and founder of Instacart.
“We expect to see continued customer demand and, as a result, we’re opening up 300,000 more full-service shopper roles across North America.
“As more people look for immediate, flexible earnings opportunities during this time, we hope that Instacart can be an additional source of income for those looking to earn while also delivering for the communities in which they live.”
Suzanne Clark, president of the US chamber of commerce, added: “Instacart is serving as a critical lifeline for millions of people and hundreds of businesses during these uncertain times.
“They’re not only connecting people from all 50 states to the groceries and goods they so desperately need, but they’re also stepping in to support the economy by unlocking much-needed earnings opportunities for hundreds of thousands of people who can no longer rely on their previous incomes.”
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