US-based fast-food chain Taco Bell, owned and operated by Yum! Brands, is set to hire at least 5,000 employees as part of its planned expansion across the nation.

The chain said it will hold outdoor hiring parties at around 2,000 company and franchise-owned locations on 21 April to hire the new team members.

According to the chain, it is looking to fill positions at all levels, from ‘food champion’ to general manager, but open roles will vary depending on the requirements of each restaurant.

Restaurants are also planning to hire more ‘bellhops’, who will support the drive-thru service with tablet ordering.

The move comes as Taco Bell prepares to reopen and remodel more restaurants as well as launch new ones throughout the year.

Taco Bell chief people officer Kelly McCulloch said: “It’s no secret that the labour market is tight, which is why we are thrilled to host our fourth round of hiring parties in partnership with our franchisees.

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“This initiative continues to be successful for us year after year, and we welcome candidates to join in to learn more about what makes Taco Bell a great place to work. We’re eager to welcome prospective new hires into the family and show them why working at Taco Bell can be more than just a job.”

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, interviews will be held at restaurants patio areas. Some locations will also offer drive-up interviews for candidates.

Among other protocols, all participants are required to wear masks and keep at least six feet distance, the chain said.

Taco Bell organised a hiring event last November to fill 2,000 positions at 400 restaurants, according to CBS News.

The same month, US-based sub sandwich restaurant chain Cousins Subs announced a plan to hire over 250 employees across its company and franchised-owned locations in Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin, US, to meet the holiday rush demand.

US-based pizza chain Little Caesars also announced plans to hire thousands of new employees at its company and franchise-owned stores last November.