How Walmart Is Making Returns Easier for Shoppers

Walmart is about to make returns and refunds easier than ever.

The big-box retailer, which came under fire last week when it announced it the decision to replace its “people greeter” positions, is eliminating the need for shoppers to wait in line at customer service desks. Instead, these services will be handled by the company’s new “customer hosts,” who will be provided the technology to process returns and issue refunds directly from Walmart’s store entrances.

At the UBS Global Consumer and Retail Conference on Wednesday, Walmart U.S. president and CEO Greg Foran told attendees that customers are “soon going to be able to do a refund right at the front door of the Walmart store.”

“We’re not going to ask you to go to the service desk,” he said. “The customer host [will have the] technology to do a refund for you right there, including cash.”

Walmart’s shift from “people greeters” to “customer hosts” is expected to begin in late April and affect employees at 1,000 stores across the country. (Employees affected by the new role have been given an extension in the company’s 60-day transition period policy.)

Foran also explained that the Bentonville, Ark.-based business is making improvements to its self-checkout service, among “all kinds of activity… to help us reduce shrinkage.”

The company has been making investments toward added convenience for customers, including curbside pickup and its “Check Out With Me” associates, who can process shoppers’ purchases directly from mobile devices.

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