Walmart is laying off more than 1,000 workers at an e-commerce fulfillment center in Fort Worth amid a nationwide series of cutbacks and consolidations.
Workers in New Jersey, California, Florida and Pennsylvania are part of the job losses as weekend and evening shifts are being eliminated or reduced at distribution warehouses.
The 1,027 job cuts in Fort Worth are at the fulfillment center at 5300 Westport Parkway, which opened in 2013 and was one of Walmart’s first facilities dedicated to filling online orders.
No facilities are closing, said Walmart spokeswoman Lauren Willis.
“Everyone is getting 90 days paid leave to look for a job and we hope they choose to stay at Walmart,” she said.
All employees can apply for open positions at other Walmart stores, Sam’s Clubs and other company facilities, according to the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification letter received by the Texas Workforce Commission. Employees were told of the cuts on February 24 and those who don’t accept another job with the company will lose employment at Walmart on June 2.
Walmart recently built two new high-tech facilities in Lancaster, south of Dallas. One is to fill e-commerce orders to customers and another to supply groceries to area stores.
In February, Walmart said it needed to hire 500 people for new tech-focused jobs at the 730,000-square-foot automated grocery distribution center. That facility has been designed to move twice the volume of a traditional distribution center while improving accuracy and quality, Walmart said.
A second 1.2-million-square-foot building nearby is on the southwest corner of East Belt Line Road and Sunrise Road and it’s designed to handle general merchandise orders.
Walmart’s cuts follow job reductions from Amazon. The two largest U.S. retailers saw their online businesses soar during the pandemic and staffed up. At the same time, Walmart has been building up its in-store online fulfillment capabilities.
“Customers’ expectations are changing, and we are moving quickly to meet and exceed their needs,” Willis said.
The decision to cut staff at the Fort Worth operation “was not made lightly,” she said and the company is working with employees to help them find other jobs at Walmart.News Source: Dallas News