As the pandemic continues to disrupt the global supply chain, Walmart is looking to hire 20,000 workers for its distribution and fulfillment centers, attempting to fill some of the most in-demand jobs in retail.
Walmart stated that the positions it is filling are permanent positions, not just seasonal jobs, and that they include both full-time and part-time positions. Order fillers, freight handlers, lift drivers, technicians, and management positions are all available. Employees in the supply chain earn an average of $20.37 per hour.
“As our business continues evolving to meet the needs of today’s customers, having a robust supply chain is more important than ever,” the company said in a statement. According to a regulatory filing, Walmart is the largest private sector employer in the United States, employing 1.6 million people as of January 31 this year.
Before the pandemic, there was already fierce competition for warehouse workers, with stores adding jobs to their warehouses and logistics networks as more customers ordered online.
Then came the pandemic, which boosted online shopping and put even more pressure on retailers to staff warehouses. Now, as they prepare for the peak holiday season, retailers are scrambling to hire more warehouse workers, despite a record number of job openings.
According to a survey of more than 80 big box, grocery, drug store, and apparel chains conducted on August 4 by executive search firm Korn Ferry, just over half of retailers said they were having “significant challenges” hiring warehouse employees.
Walmart plans to hold special hiring events on September 8 and 9 to fill these positions, according to the company. Despite Walmart’s ability to offer attractive pay and benefit packages, including a recent announcement of free college tuition, experts believe it will be difficult to fill warehouse positions.
“Demand for distribution center workers is still skyrocketing,” said Craig Rowley, a senior client partner at Korn Ferry who specializes in retail. “Everyone who has a desire to be a distribution center worker already has a job.”