Walmart introduces annual bonuses for US hourly store workers

Walmart has announced that it will pay annual bonuses of up to $1,000 to its US hourly store workers, including those at its pharmacy and Vision Center stores.

The decision, which could impact around 700,000 front-line staff, was made based on feedback from store workers, according to John Furner, Walmart US chief exec.

To be eligible for the bonus, an hourly worker must have been with the company for at least a year, with the bonus calculated based on stores achieving specific performance targets. This announcement follows Walmart's January decision to redesign bonuses for US store managers, allowing them to earn an annual bonus of up to 200 per cent of their salary.

During Walmart's annual general meeting, investors voted on seven shareholder proposals, including one urging the company to set a compensation policy that provides workers with minimum earnings necessary to meet a family's basic needs. Despite criticism from activist investor groups, the proposal received only about 4.4 per cent of the shares voted.

Walmart, which employs approximately 1.6 million US workers, pays a minimum hourly wage starting from $14, lower than the $15 starting wage at competitors like Amazon and Target.

The company has also launched an 'Associate to Technician' certification program to help workers transition to higher-paying technician roles, aiming to bridge the gap between the current technician headcount and the forecasted demand in the next two years.

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