Walmart is hiring tens of thousands of new workers as it prepares for higher-than-usual online demand during the holidays.
The big-box chain announced today that it plans to employ 20,000 people for seasonal jobs at its e-commerce fulfillment centers across the United States. The roles, which include order fillers and power equipment operators, have at a starting hourly rate ranging from $15.75 to $23.75 based on location, position and schedule.
In a statement, the company told interested applicants to visit WalmartCareers.com/Seasonal for a complete list of open posts. Employment begins immediately upon hiring, with shifts scheduled as quickly as 48 hours after applying, and continues through Jan. 1. (Some workers may be employed full-time following the period.)
“The holidays are always a special time, and this year we think the season will mean even more to our customers. As more of them turn to online shopping, we want to ensure we’re staffed and ready to help deliver that special gift to their loved ones while continuing to fulfill our customer’s everyday needs,” said Greg Smith, EVP of supply chain for Walmart U.S. “We’re also proud to be able to continue to provide employment opportunities across the country when it’s needed most.”
Although the coronavirus pandemic has hit the retail sector hard, big-box and grocery stores have seen increased demand for certain household items and other necessities, leading to mass hiring at those chains at a time when a record number of jobs are being shed elsewhere. According to Walmart, the seasonal roles follow its employment of more than 500,000 new associates across its stores and supply chain since March. Due to its status as an essential retailer, the Bentonville, Ark.-based company continued operating even in states and localities where the COVID-19 outbreak was severe.
In addition to the hiring announcement, Walmart said it would increase the availability of holiday gifts in the athleisure, loungewear and sleepwear departments, as well as outdoor grills, bicycles and exercise equipment, plus outdoor sporting goods. The move comes as consumer shopping habits continue to shift as many Americans stay indoors amid the health crisis.
“Over the past six months, our customers have been shopping differently, and we expect that will continue into the most important shopping season of the year — the holidays,” said Scott McCall, EVP and chief merchandising officer at Walmart U.S. “We’ve heard from our customers that many plan on starting their holiday shopping well before Black Friday, and that they’re looking for gifts that fit their current lifestyle, so we’ve adjusted our strategy to adapt to these new shopping preferences.”