By Jeff Fatheree
When you walk into Walmart what is the first thing on your mind? I would be willing to bet it is not how wonderful a member of the community or what a good corporate citizen they have become. You would be surprised to learn all they do from a local and a corporate position. Walmart is one of the few companies that have not had any layoffs during the COVID-19 pandemic or ever for that matter. I went to visit the Woodville Walmart and spoke with Ms. Becki the Asst. Manager. We were discussing what new things were coming and that I had been told Walmart was working to have automated self-checkout throughout the chain of stores. Now to those of us that shop there it would appear this meant decreasing human employment in exchange for technology, but boy was I wrong.
The increase in use of technology speeds up the checkout experience and allows employees more time to assist customers, keep the store clean, shelves full and clean as well as overall making the shopping experience more pleasant. In addition to all these benefits it also requires more employees in the stores and the positions filled tend to pay a higher wage than cashier.
The enhancement in experience is just one step in using technology to better serve. If you have not tried curbside pickup, this is another technology that has been employed to help customers. If you are in a hurry and really don’t have time to shop the store or if you simply have trouble navigating the store due to illness injury or other disabling condition, they can shop for you and you drive in and pickup you already paid order. The Corporate offices also have responded to the social events and are making donations through a 2-1 match of employees giving to the Equal Justice Initiative. If you are not sure what this is watch the movie “Just Mercy” and you will find it is a very worthy cause.
Locally our Walmart is reaching out to Police, EMS, Bankers, and Hospital workers taking lunch sandwiches and other things to thank them for being here in the pandemic and everyday to make us safer and healthier. The local store also increased employment during the pandemic and will keep those employees on long after it has passed. While there have been slow downs in stocking and supply chains the system is catching back up rapidly, and you should see less and less shortages of items on the shelves. They also are doing a new thing called “Funday Sundays” each Sunday beginning at 7:30 a.m., and runs until whatever they are giving out that Sunday is gone. They would love to see your faces there and this Sunday, July 12, which will be Jell-O Day.
Other celebrations include: July 19 (Ice Cream Day) and the 26 (Parent’s Day.) August 2 sees National Ice Cream Week; August 9 – National Book Lover’s Day; August 16– National Elvis Week.
I am not going to list them all as you need to come on down and check it out for yourselves and have some fun with the community. If you are a part of a non-profit in the community and have an upcoming project stop by and fill out the form to request some assistance.
They need some lead time for these requests as it travels to Arkansas to get approved and then corporate cuts a check.
Come support your local Walmart have a good time with your neighbors and remember to thank them for all they do in the community.