Earlier this year, Walmart - which last year reported $485.9 billion in revenue - said it would raise its hourly minimum wage to $10 for most workers, but activist groups say many employees are still struggling to make ends meet.
About 90 percent of the USA population lives within 10 miles of a Walmart, and the company is using those locations as shipping hubs to compete with Amazon on the last mile of delivery - the most expensive part of getting goods to customers.
Walmart, which is aggressively investing in e-commerce to better compete with Amazon, is unveiling a new strategy: turning its army of 1.5 million USA employees into delivery drivers.
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT) helps people around the world save money and live better - anytime and anywhere - in retail stores, online, and through their mobile devices. Still, the final delivery step to a customer's home - what the industry refers to as the "last mile" - "makes up the lion's share of fulfillment costs", Jariwala said.
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It will likely roll out to more stores soon, since according to Walmart, the response from associates and customers has been overwhelmingly positive. Walmart e-commerce is towards a move that is testing a program wherein its store workers deliver packages on their way home.
Walmart says the program is optional for now, though if it made a decision to fully launch this program in the future, it could choose implement more structure. Those involve home delivery of general merchandise, which can include dry foods but not fresh or refrigerated items.
To get next-day shipping at Amazon, users have to pay for the Prime membership which costs $99 annually.
The gathering - part pep rally, part music concert, and only briefly a business meeting - comes as Walmart's moves to meld its online services with its battalion of 4,700 stores are gaining momentum.
Faster shipping has become a key area of competition as online retail continues to grow at a double-digit pace, while traditional brick-and-mortar stores struggle with falling sales. By using existing workers in their own cars, Walmart could create a vast network with little upfront cost, similar to how Uber Technologies Inc. created a ride-hailing service without owning any cars. But unlike "crowdsourced solutions" where drivers have to go out of their way to pick up and then deliver the packages, Lore noted that Walmart employees start from the shipping site and will be using routes that don't take them out of the way. If you are viewing this article on another site, it was copied illegally and republished in violation of U.S. & worldwide trademark and copyright law. You have encouraged us in our mission - to provide quality news and watchdog journalism. Our role as an independent, fact-based news organization has never been clearer. "We're making every day easier for busy families and we're using new ways of working to do it", he said.