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Schlotzsky’s aims to get the work-from-home crowd back into lunch

With the pandemic shifting the workforce from office building to home office, lunch has gotten lost in the shuffle.
Photograph courtesy of Schlotzsky's

Pre-pandemic, lunch could be the highlight of the workday for some employees, whether they were trying a new restaurant, ordering in from a favorite spot or taking a break at the company cafe. But with coronavirus shifting office workers to home offices, lunch has become a bore—or even a burden.

Schlotzsky’s hopes to get people excited about lunch again with its new “Work From Home Lunch Upgrade” campaign. The idea came out of a survey the fast-casual chain conducted with more than 1,000 American adults.

The survey data showed that 50% of remote workers don't look forward to lunch as much as they did when working at the office, and 52% reported they are running out of ideas for what to eat while working from home. Thirty-one percent said their WFH lunches are 'nothing to brag about' and 36% felt their mother would be ashamed if she knew what they ate for lunch most days.

Newly remote workers also are finding it tough to carve out time for a lunch break, with 37% saying they eat lunch while working, often scrounging for leftovers.The top reasons they’re not taking a break? Too much work to do (42%) and juggling household responsibilities with work (34%).

To ease the lunchtime burden, Schlotzsky’s new campaign aims to give away 5,000 free lunches and the chance to dine virtually with Brian Baumgartner, known for playing Kevin Malone on the sitcom “The Office.”

Customers can enter by posting an image of their embarrassing work-from-home lunch on Twitter to @schlotzskys with the hashtag #wfhlunchupgrade. The chain will DM back a promo code to redeem a free lunch by ordering from the Schlotzsky’s app. Ten entrants will win the virtual lunch with Baumgartner.

Additionally, every entry triggers a donation by Schlotzsky’s to Feeding Texas, one of the state’s anti-hunger organizations. Up to 5,000 meals will be donated.

With the workforce shifting to work-from-home mode, fast casuals in urban locations and those near office complexes have been hit especially hard.Through its new campaign, Schlotzsky’s not only wants to reignite excitement around lunch, the chain no doubt hopes to re-engage customers and recoup some business.



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