Walmart is moving its workforce full-time, with the goal of working two-thirds of its American store hours full-time early next year with a more consistent work schedule.
This was up from 53 percent five years ago, but still below the average of 71 percent for the retail and wholesale industry.
With the move announced on Wednesday, the nation’s largest private employer says its 1.2 million American Walmart hourly store workers will work full-time until January 31. This means that there will be about 110,000 more full-time workers than this. Five years ago. Walmart employs about 1.5 million workers in Sam’s clubs, distribution centers and corporate and managerial jobs in the US.
Drew Holler, Walmart’s senior vice president of operations for the American people, told the Associated Press on Wednesday that workers are seeking a full-time job with improved health and dental benefits. Holler also said that full-time work gives the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retailer a competitive edge because it is able to retain and attract better employees in a competitive environment. The moves also come in the form of pickups and delivery businesses are calling for more full-time jobs as Walmart’s stores serve as both fulfillment centers and retail locations.
“We know that providing skills training as well as providing more full-time opportunities and making it easier to work with colleagues will help us attract and retain top talent,” Holler wrote in a corporate blog.
Walmart’s increasing focus on full-time jobs is also because it is building a team-based structure in its stores where groups of eight to 12 workers work together and cross-train in a store’s area, such as toys or clothing. Huh.
Walmart considers any employee working 34 hours or more full-time, although anyone working 30 hours or more a week is eligible for health coverage. The retailer said that with team scheduling, Walmart employees would have 39- to 40-hour schedules in a row.
But Walmart’s strategy is also happening as criticism continues by labor-backed groups across the board to lag behind major retailers such as Target, Amazon and Costco in their minimum hourly wages. Costco raised its minimum hourly wage to $ 16, while the starting salary on Target and Amazon is $ 15 per hour. Walmart last raised its entry-level wage for US hourly employees to $ 11 in early 2018, although it is introducing wages for some jobs. Holler says Walmart is more focused on making clear avenues with better training so workers can move up the ladder.
The trend toward full-time staffing also comes in the form of online as Amazon faced the biggest union push in its history. Walmart declined to comment on whether its efforts are a way to lead any similar efforts that arose at the retailer.
Holler said the full-time staffing approach has been successful at Walmart’s distribution centers and fulfillment centers, where more than 80 percent of its employees are full-time.
Mark Matthews, vice president of research development and industry analysis at the National Retail Federation, the nation’s largest retail trade group, says there was a move among retailers to part-time workers a decade ago. In fact, 31 percent of retail and wholesale workers, excluding warehouse employees, were part-time in 2010, according to an analysis of government employees.
But in recent years, this number has been decreasing as the popularity of online shopping has reduced the need for employees in odd times. In 2017, the percentage of part-time workers dropped to 27 percent, but then increased to 29 percent last year due to the epidemic.