This Dramatic McDonald's Drive-Thru Sign Is Turning Heads

"We are closed because I am quitting and I hate this job," a former McDonald's employee typed matter-of-factly on a sheet of paper, which they taped to the drive-thru monitor before finishing their final night shift and closing the restaurant early. A customer saw the sign the next day while on his way to buy a BTS meal at the Louisville, Kentucky, McDonald's location, and his photo of it went viral on Twitter.

When the Twitter user @GreatApeDad asked employees about the sign, they said they hadn't noticed it but that "their night manager had quit and closed early the evening before," according to Today. "I think that people are just frustrated, especially the working class people who are there in the front line," the user, who also used to work in the service industry, told the outlet. He added that the employee could have been at "a boiling point" and that he can understand why "someone on a Saturday night that doesn't want to be working the drive-thru wants to just call it quits."

The restaurant industry is still experiencing pandemic-related labor shortages

This isn't the first time that an emotional sign at a McDonald's drive-thru has gone viral. In April, an employee posted a note asking customers to be patient while waiting for their orders because the restaurant was "short staffed" and "no one wants to work anymore," according to Entrepreneur. Comments seemed to suggest that the fast-food industry was having trouble hiring enough workers to meet the growing demand for restaurant meals as the pandemic slowed, leaving the few employees on the job feeling overwhelmed.

Months later, while coronavirus cases have plunged, some workers remain unvaccinated or unenthusiastic about returning to work, reports Today. In efforts to hire thousands of workers this summer, some locations are trying to incentivize new employees with appreciation pay, sign-on and referral bonuses, and paid time off. A Tampa, Florida, location offered $50 to those who came in for interviews, while a corporate announcement said that employees at the company-owned locations (just 5% of the total number of McDonald's stores) would receive pay increases this year (via Today). It remains to be seen whether these efforts will earn McDonald's people who join — and stay — on staff.