Employment and Jobs

Walmart’s New Secret Weapon for Success? Big Bonuses and Vital Training for Employees

October 17, 2016  • Brian Sozzi

The following was originally posted in TheStreet.

Interior of a Walmart store

For many, working at Walmart was always seen as a job that pays the bills instead of one that could lead to an actual career. But Walmart has taken steps this year to alter that mindset and retain employees who may otherwise would have jumped ship after graduating school or if another opportunity arose. In February, Walmart opened its first training academy to teach new employees critical retail skills such as putting out the right pricing displays and knowing which items are turning a profit and why. Walmart calls the new training “upskilling.”

By the second quarter of 2017, Walmart says it will have 200 academies with dedicated teaching staffs and students commuting from nearby stores. The training program will take two weeks, and employees get compensated for their time and travel. The first academy opened on Feb. 20, the same day the world’s largest retailer lifted wages for over 1.2 million workers.

“There is a war for talent, we realize the retail environment is changing,” said a Walmart executive at its annual shareholder’s meeting in June. When asked by TheStreet if Walmart fears losing its newly-trained employees to competing retailers, the executive said the company believes such training investments can help it keep employees happy and stay because they gain confidence they’ll eventually be promoted.

This piece was excerpted from Walmart’s New Secret Weapon for Success? Big Bonuses and Vital Training for Employees by TheStreet’s Brian Sozzi. Click here to read more.

Walmart and Walmart.org are supporters of UpSkill America, an initiative of the Economic Opportunities Program.


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