Walmart said it has seen a surge in demand for hair color, beard trimmers and sewing machines as Americans stay home during the Coronavirus pandemic and they are still working hard to keep pace with rising toilet paper sales.
Dan Bartlett, CNBC’s executive vice president of corporate affairs, told Courtney Reagan, CNBC, that the large retailer has hired over 100,000 new workers over the past three weeks to help him keep stock racks stored and fulfill orders online during the COVID-19 pandemic.
We will easily multiply the 150,000.
We will do an assessment to see if we need to do more.
Most jobs are temporary, Bartlett said, but about 10% to 15% are permanent jobs. He said that many of Walmart’s new employees come from severely affected industries and use jobs to survive until their traditional jobs return to the Internet.
He said People are watching the horizon to know when and when the economy will rise again.
But in the meantime, they provide critical service and welcome them with open arms.
Walmart is one of the retailers who saw an increase in sales as Americans bought more groceries and household items. She is among the leading retailers who have remained open because many companies, from clothing stores to restaurants, have temporarily closed and laid off or flooded hundreds of thousands of employees.
But in recent weeks, some key retailers have said they have been infected with the epidemic. Costco Wholesale, which has long lines and empty shelves, said on Wednesday that sales slowed in late March as government orders kept people at home and restricted traffic in stores to allow social distance. Walgreen said that the same store sales increased 26% in the first 21 days of March as the number of people increased, but then pedestrian traffic decreased and store sales themselves fell in the middle of teenagers in the last week of the month.
Target warned that its profits could decrease as customers buy less clothes and accessories.
Bartlett said that WalMart is still seeing sustainable demand even on materials like toilet paper that people have been stockpiling.
He said that paper goods are still under pressure.
He said that Wal-Mart sells enough toilet paper over five days so that every American can have his own roll.
He said the retailer is experiencing interesting changes as people shop for it too.
He said all kinds of things you do yourself like hair coloring and beard trimmers sell well
Sewing machines fly off the shelf too because many people sell and make their own masks at home.
He said that Walmart has insights that it can share with other companies to help employees and customers feel safe. For example, he said, she had to adopt new protocols to encourage customers to stay six feet away.
It is not an ordinary habit for people to shop this way, but we are improving every day,” he said. “These kinds of lessons, which we will clearly share with policymakers and others, are the kinds of things that I think all industries in different sectors will have to adopt themselves to give the confidence that people need to get back to work.