Walmart to increase pay and expand family-friendly benefits in US


US-based retail organisation Walmart is to increase pay for employees paid on an hourly basis, as well as expand its family-friendly benefits offering to introduce a new adoption support benefit.

The pay rise, which will be effective from the organisation’s 17 February 2018 pay cycle, will see all employees that are currently paid on an hourly basis earn $11 (£8.08) an hour. The pay increase will apply for all hourly-paid employees working at Walmart in the US, including those working across its stores, Sam’s Clubs, eCommerce, logistics and Home Office businesses. The pay award will be delivered in addition to planned wage increases for some US markets that have been forecast for the approaching fiscal year.

Eligible full and part-time employees who are paid on an hourly basis in the US will additionally receive a one-time bonus. The bonus amount will be based on employees’ length of service, with those who have undertaken at least 20 years of service qualifying for a $1,000 (£734.69) payment. Qualification for the bonus will be determined by the end of January 2018, with payments delivered soon after. A one-time charge will be taken in quarter four of the current year to account for the bonuses.

Walmart US is also introducing a new financial support benefit for employees adopting a child. Available for both full-time staff who are paid on an hourly basis as well as salaried employees, eligible adoptive parents will receive up to $5,000 (£3673.45) per child. The benefit has been designed to help employees cover expenses such as adoption agency fees, translation fees and legal or court costs.

To further improve its family-friendly benefits, Walmart US is also enhancing its parental and maternity leave policy to provide full-time, hourly-paid US employees with up to 10 weeks of paid maternity leave and up to six weeks of paid parental leave. Salaried employees will receive six weeks of paid parental leave under the expanded policy.

Managers will communicate the benefits changes to employees over the next few days.

Doug McMillon, president and chief executive officer at Walmart US, said: “We are building on investments we’ve been making in [employees], in their wages and skills development. It’s our people who make the difference and we appreciate how they work hard to make every day easier for busy families.

“We are early in the stages of assessing the opportunities tax reform creates for us to invest in our customers and [employees] and to further strengthen our business, all of which should benefit our shareholders. However, some guiding themes are clear and consistent with how we’ve been investing; lower prices for customers, better wages and training for [employees] and investments in the future of our [organisation], including in technology. Tax reform gives us the opportunity to be more competitive globally and to accelerate plans for the US.”