As part of a plan increase competitiveness, Walmart has laid off 450 workers from its headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas.
USA Today reports that the cuts were announced in a memo to Walmart and Sam’s Club employees by CEO Doug McMillon. The cuts are across the entire organization, affecting those in salaried, management positions. The retail giant has 18,000 people employed at its headquarters.
In the memo, McMillon says that the changes will, “…help us become a more nimble organization that serves customers better,” and that, “customers are changing, retail is changing and we must change. We need to become a more agile company that can easily adapt to shifting customer demand.”
McMillon goes on to say that the decision is meant to assist the “house team” in moving quicker and more purposefully. These layoffs follow shortly after the retailer cut its outlook for the remainder of the year, after a drop in earnings for the second quarter. The company has invested in raising wages and increasing employee training, which is affecting overall profit.
Walmart is far from the only company that announced layoffs and strategy shifts. Whole Foods plans to lay off 15,00 people, as competition increases. Sprint plans to potentially cut $2.5 billion in costs. Target laid off 1,700 employees at its headquarters, back in March. They plan to cut 2,000 more jobs over the next two years.
Job growth in the U.S is slipping overall. Employers added a little more than half of the anticipated 203,000. The unemployment rate remained the same, while hourly wages fell.