Digital mortgage lending startup Better.com is making an internal push to hire laid-off hospitality industry workers, as the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) wrecks the hospitality industry, closing bars, restaurants and hotels across the country.

“The Coronavirus pandemic has made an unprecedented impact on each of our lives,” Better.com CEO Vishal Garg said, in an internal memo obtained by Inman.

“One of the things that I find most heartbreaking to see, every time I turn on the news, is the devastation caused to local businesses with thousands of hard-working individuals being laid off in cities around the country,” Garg added. “The hospitality industry, in particular, has suffered a historic blow.”

In most states, real estate is still considered an essential service and with mortgage rates at an all-time low, mortgage and refinance rates are high. Garg, in the memo, said the growing digital mortgage startup has a need to hire approximately 150 colleagues a month in sales and mortgage operations to meet growing demand. The company plans to hire a total of 1,000 new employees this year.

The company is specifically targeting laid-off hospitality workers in New York City, as well as Charlotte, North Carolina and Orange County, California. The company isn’t requiring a college degree for the roles and is offering virtual onboarding.

“The hard-working people of the hospitality industry will bring a continued high level of service and customer first-ethos to our sales and ops teams as we grow,” Garg said. “Working in hospitality requires a customer-centric mindset and an ability to be level-headed and calm under pressure.”

“These attributes are very valuable and transferable to our sales and ops teams and college degrees are not required,” Garg added. “All new joiners will take part in our virtual onboarding program through Better University and we’ll make every effort for them to feel at home, productive and able to do their best work here.”

Email Patrick Kearns

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