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MARKETANALYST.US / ECONOMY & WORK

Walmart Announces Bonuses For Hourly Workers, Training Programs to Fill High-Demand Roles

The chain has set a goal to help fast-track Walmart and Sam's employees into approximately 100,000 in-demand jobs that it expects to fill over the next three years.
PUBLISHED JUN 11, 2024
Cover Image Source: A Walmart store in Secaucus, New Jersey | Getty Images | Photo by VIEWpress
Cover Image Source: A Walmart store in Secaucus, New Jersey | Getty Images | Photo by VIEWpress

Walmart recently announced its new training programs and certifications to fill high-demand roles across its business such as HVAC technicians, opticians, and software engineers. The retail giant added that it will also offer a bonus of up to $1,000 per year, another reason for hourly store workers to stick around.

The nation's largest private employer is reimagining its Live Better U (LBU), which is an employee education benefit to focus on skills that will make its employees more desirable for key roles within the company. The chain has set a goal to help fast-track Walmart and Sam's employees into approximately 100,000 in-demand jobs that it expects to fill over the next three years.



"We’re also focused on helping associates develop the skills to move into roles in technology, health & wellness, our private fleet of truck drivers, and other growing parts of our company," said Lorraine Stomski, senior VP, of associate learning & leadership, at Walmart. Walmart has now doubled the number of short-form certificates and courses it offers to more than 50 options.

"Associates are telling us they want shorter options, and for good reason," said Stromski. "Our associates complete short-form certificates in just four months, on average. The quicker they learn new skills, the faster they can move up." As per the company, the average hourly wage is around $18, up by about 30% over the past five years, and yet the retail giant often gets heat for its wages. These new programs will ensure that the employees can move into higher-paying jobs, as announced by the company.

Walmart will be piloting a six-month training program in the Dallas-Fort Worth area with 100 store and warehouse associates who want to work in skilled trades. This will include technician roles, refrigeration, maintenance as well as HVAC, as per Lo Stomski, the company’s chief talent officer. These trade jobs are set to pay between $19 and $45 per hour. Other certifications include frontline manager leadership, people and business leadership, data science, software development, and project management.

A sign hangs outside Walmart store on January 11, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. Image Source: Getty Images|Photo by Scott Olson
A sign hangs outside a Walmart store in Chicago, Illinois. Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Scott Olson

"We want associates to have ultimate flexibility and control over their career, so we’re making it easy for them to earn college credit simply by attending training," Stomski said about the certifications via Chain Storage. This initiative was inspired by another program that was launched to fill in another high-paying role: truck drivers. Workers who want to participate need not existing Walmart employees. Walmart also said that they have increased the number of skills certificates that it offers to more than 50, which is way more than what it was offering back in 2020.



These certifications can help employees move into leadership roles in stores, clubs as well as supply chain facilities. The announcements came at Walmart's event which was held virtually last Wednesday. On Friday, Walmart is set to throw its annual associates celebration, a combination of a pep rally and an employee awards program that draws thousands of workers from across the globe and features surprise celebrity appearances and musical performances, which will be held in its hometown of Bentonville, Arkansas.

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