Thousands of Walmart, Sam’s Club associates in Milwaukee and across the state will get pay raise

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MILWAUKEE — As part of the largest single-day, private-sector pay increase ever, more than 1.2 million Walmart and Sam’s Club associates in the U.S., including more than 6,700 in the Milwaukee metro area and more than 25,700 in the state of Wisconsin will receive a pay raise in their March 10 paycheck. The increases are part of the company’s two-year, $2.7 billion investment in higher pay, better training, clearer career paths and additional educational opportunities for its workers.

Walmart associates are eligible for quarterly cash bonuses based on the performance of their store. For the full fiscal year, Walmart associates across the country earned more than $550 million in bonuses, including more than $13.6 million in Wisconsin. In addition to the higher wages, the March 10 paycheck for eligible Wisconsin associates will include a share of the more than $4.6 million bonus earned in the fourth quarter of the year alone.

“I absolutely love my job. Ever since I moved to Milwaukee and was warmly welcomed to Walmart in 2001, the company has been incredibly supportive of my career advancement,” said Cynthia Cranford, personnel coordinator at a Milwaukee Walmart Supercenter. “The new initiatives and wage increase will provide more incentives and opportunities for me and my fellow associates to achieve long term success with the company.”

Walmart’s associate investment is about more than wages and benefits. It is designed to provide associates the skills, knowledge and tools they need to grow with the company and provide great customer service. The company is also creating new training programs, which will create clear career paths from entry-level positions to jobs with more responsibility and higher pay.

Wages and advancement

A job at Walmart means competitive pay for all associates. Last year, Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club promoted more than 200,000 associates, including more than 5,200 in Wisconsin, to jobs with higher pay and more responsibility. In addition, more than 150,000 associates, including more than 3,700 in Wisconsin were converted from part-time to full-time. This month’s pay changes include:

  • All associates hired before Jan. 1, 2016 will earn at least $10/hour.
    • New entry-level associates hired after Jan. 1 will continue to start at $9/hour and will move to at least $10/hour after successfully completing the company’s new retail skills and training program known as Pathways.
  • Associates already earning more than $10/hour will see their annual pay increase starting in March rather than waiting until their anniversary date.
  • Walmart is raising the starting rate of its non-entry level hourly pay bands. Anyone earning below the new minimum will automatically move up to the new minimum.
  • Associates at or above their pay band maximum will receive a one-time lump sum payment equal to 2 percent of their annual pay.

Walmart in Wisconsin

Walmart’s local investment goes beyond the company’s recent pay raises. In Wisconsin, the company:

  • Operates 101 retail units.
  • Spent $3.1 billion with local suppliers, supporting 58,873 supplier jobs in FYE 2015.
  • Paid more than $109.7 million in taxes and collected more than $188.7 million in sales taxes in FYE 2015.

This associate investment was taken into account in the financial outlook discussed last October at the company’s annual analyst meeting.

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