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(Financial Post)   Wal-Mart shelves are empty. They're empty because there aren't enough people to stock them. There aren't enough people to stock them because stores aren't selling enough. Stores aren't selling enough because the shelves are empty   (business.financialpost.com) divider line 21
    More: Amusing, Wal-Mart, department stores, Home Office, second shift, bulk box, peak hour, CPA, Anthony Falletta  
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3270 clicks; posted to Business » on 27 Mar 2013 at 1:05 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-27 02:23:00 AM
3 votes:
I've never understood this, the entire time I've worked in retail. If the store is not performing well due to task issues, why the hell would you cut *manpower*? If stuff isn't getting done, getting fewer people to do the work isn't going to solve a damned thing.

I could see if they were *overstaffed* and had idle people.

My mother recently got a job at a dollar store as an assistant manager, and ends up doing the schedule (She's hourly at 9 bucks an hour, btw. ...yes, my family, myself included, is urban white trash, how could you tell?), and... nothing in the store is getting done, because they've often only got enough hours to keep two people - a manager and a cashier - on duty at any given time. Therefore the manager has to end up doing everything from stocking to blowing up balloons... ...and ringing register at a *BUSY STORE*.

This sort of thing boils my blood, as I watch Costco, Trader Joes, and even goddamn In n Out have more competent people on the bottom rung than the *MANAGER* level coworkers my mother deals with.

I don't know. I sell goods and services at conventions in the dealer room - if there's nobody behind my table, then people walking by *CANT BE SOLD TO*. This is basic shiat, and the only thing I can possibly lay the blame for this failure is a disastrous fixation on short term results and ignoring long term consequences.

And I don't know how to fix that.
2013-03-27 02:01:54 AM
3 votes:

WhoIsNotInMyKitchen: unyon: I'm inclined to buy Walmart's official story on this from TFA.  It'd hardly be surprising that in some locations there are staffing challenges.  Walmart won't even build a store near Ft MacMurray AB- they know that they won't be able to hire anyone for anywhere close to what makes business sense.

"Business Sense" being the lowest possible wages imaginable to ensure the Walton family hiers (aka Job Creators) don't starve to death.

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jul/18/business/la-fi-mo-walmart-he ir s-20120718
The net worth of the six walmart heirs is a as much as the bottom 40% of americans combined.  I can see why they can't afford to pay a few more people to stock the shelves in the shiatty stores.


Yup, meanwhile CostCo seems to be thriving while still treating their employees like human beings who deserve to be able to afford to eat and pay rent.
2013-03-26 09:25:28 PM
3 votes:
Stores aren't selling enough because the shelves are emptyWalmart and the rest of corporate America refuses to pay their employees a wage high enough to actually afford to buy anything, even at Walmart.
2013-03-27 09:09:52 AM
2 votes:
Target's cheaper. It's also closer for me anyway. I've got a Red Card for an additional 5% discount on top of any base savings Target currently has over Walmart.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-23/target-cheaper-than-wal-mar t- as-gap-widest-in-two-years.html

I don't like Walmart and shop at Target for multiple reasons:

- My mother-in-law works at one and they treat their employees poorly. She mentioned the priority of managers getting bonuses and how understaffed her two local stores are when I last visited with her. She's worked there a for nearly a decade now, and they haven't seemed to started treating her any better. She's nearly 70, so she's not inclined to wanting to try to find other work. She seems to be considering retiring sometime soon though.

- Target may not pay their employees any better, but from what I've noticed in my local store, there's always plenty of help around, and it's well stocked 98% of the time. Employees offer help at least twice before I get to the check out lane.

- Target employees aren't going to be working a swing shift one day, a grave yard the following day and a day shift on the third day because Target opens at 8 am and closes at 10 pm. In that sense, their store hours force at least one level of better treatment for their employees with hours that won't totally ruin their sleep schedules.

- The atmosphere of Walmart is crowded and full of "People of Walmart." It has weird people there every time I've been there.

- I've never been to Target at 11 pm on a week night and found people prodding along their young, crabby, exhausted children because Target's closed by then. Leave the kids in bed with a family member or close friend babysitting while their mother and/or father goes grocery shopping if shifts don't accommodate shopping in "normal" business hours. The kids don't need to suffer too because their parents have crappy shift work jobs. If that's not doable because of lack of social support, go on a day off work during the day instead of two or three hours after the kids should have been in bed.

- Their produce sucks and the poor lighting in the produce sections hides it fairly well. I got a bell pepper once from Walmart only to get home and find it had quite a lot of mold on it.

- Their stores are seldom clean and well organized in appearance. Most of the ones I've been to are run down looking, even if it's a newer store. Shelves have stuff thrown about haphazardly, as if there's not enough people to reorganize after customers and their children trash the place.

- Walmart used to be all American products, now everything's "made in China." I'm not saying stuff at Target's not made in foreign countries, but I don't remember them ever advertising that their stuff was all American at any point.
2013-03-26 11:51:42 PM
2 votes:
Don't forget the micromanaging that walmart does from Bentonville, rather than let managers and employees do their jobs.  Some of the policies and pilot procedures they implement, show that no one that came up with some ideas ever had to work in a real store.
2013-03-26 09:39:29 PM
2 votes:
I live so far out that Wal-mart is the only option for a general goods store (our town was the one featured in PBS's "Store Wars" movie).  I used to go to it for two things each month:  bottled water, because well water around here has sulfur deposits and smells no matter how well you filter it, and toilet paper, because you could get 97,000 rolls in one package.  Otherwise we had two local grocery stores that were more expensive but not ridiculously more expensive, except for bottled water.

Well, Wal-Mart can't even keep that stocked any more.  I stopped shopping there for water before Christmas because every time I hit the water aisle, the only thing left were three gallon jugs of water.  Great if you have a giant fridge or need to ride out a storm, but otherwise useless for everyday needs.  They can't even keep their toilet paper stocked anymore, and since we're on our own septic system we can't just buy the 9-ply fancy stuff you city folk use.

F**k Wal-Mart for shiatty service.

In all fairness, though, they didn't put many of the stores in the documentary out of business - primarily because there WEREN'T that many stores there to begin with.  A local bakery went under, but Wal-Mart was so shiatty with their hardware department that our local hardware store just expanded.   Radio Shack may go out of business, but that's hardly Wal-Mart's fault.

Otherwise, it's been a boon to a very small town that had high unemployment for unskilled workers who lived in the surrounding area, and that spilled over to ancillary businesses like cheap restaurants and gas stations.  It gets more people off the highway on their way to Virginia Beach from DC, so the pass-through business shot up exponentially.  These are all good things Wal-Mart did.  Then after 10 years of being in business, they managed to turn the store into shiat.

I suppose I can't complain too much - it's probably one of the few Wal-marts in the US that opened in an area where there wasn't anything comparable nearby.  If you wanted clothes that weren't used you had to drive to a mall 25 miles away.  The grocery stores are still open because Wal-Mart's groceries are shiat.  Any Target or KMart stye goods simply weren't sold in the town before Wal-Mart got there - you had to drive at least 20 miles to get them.

Also, the company that made the film has absolutely no interest in making it available to the broader public, so you can purchase you very own copy for the low, low cost of $250.  Or just watch the trailer.
2013-03-26 09:35:41 PM
2 votes:
So where do the people of Wal- Mart go now?

Target and yes I have a problem with that!

The local walmart is not putting pallet dispalys in the aisles and in front of the register area, this combined with the family reunions in the aisle make the place unshoppable.
2013-03-28 03:51:06 AM
1 votes:

I sound fat: Katolu: I'd be happy to see Walmart fold. The employees could find better jobs, and the local companys can recuperate.

um, if their employees COULD find better jobs.....

what would happen is their employees would go on unemployment for 2.5 years or whatever is allowed at this time.


We're looking to hire five people. There was a homeless guy today just outside the parking lot. I went to three different members of management- all of whom also saw him- and went, in complete seriousness, 'you know, he could probably use a job, we have a lot of jobs we need to fill, our understaffing situation is so bad it made the front page of Yahoo and half the store has already seen the article which is basically filled with things we've already been telling you for a long time... bring that homeless guy to us. One down, four to go.'

I'm not sure whether I was taken seriously.
2013-03-27 10:11:15 AM
1 votes:
I dont shop at Wally World because of their labor practices.

They scrape the bottom of the barrel and it shows.

When you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.
2013-03-27 09:18:14 AM
1 votes:
The best thing about Target is that it's where the hot women shop.  Serious babes every time I walk in there.
kab
2013-03-27 09:12:17 AM
1 votes:

I sound fat: Nina Haagen Dazs: So where do the people of Wal- Mart go now?

We go to aldi.


Exactly.   Anyone who genuinely needs to save money isn't shopping at Wal-Mart.
2013-03-27 09:04:31 AM
1 votes:

brandent: Horribly written story with baseless stupidity gets greenlit and then the comment quality in the thread is zero.


Congrats on fulfilling your own prophecn.
2013-03-27 07:53:57 AM
1 votes:
I quit being a Wal-Mart customer more than a decade ago for the very reasons in the article. The local Target is nicer anyway for general goods. Anymore it's Old Navy and Kohls for most clothes.

Did the most American thing of all; I voted with my wallet.
2013-03-27 05:52:23 AM
1 votes:

Summercat: I've never understood this, the entire time I've worked in retail. If the store is not performing well due to task issues, why the hell would you cut *manpower*? If stuff isn't getting done, getting fewer people to do the work isn't going to solve a damned thing.

I could see if they were *overstaffed* and had idle people.

My mother recently got a job at a dollar store as an assistant manager, and ends up doing the schedule (She's hourly at 9 bucks an hour, btw. ...yes, my family, myself included, is urban white trash, how could you tell?), and... nothing in the store is getting done, because they've often only got enough hours to keep two people - a manager and a cashier - on duty at any given time. Therefore the manager has to end up doing everything from stocking to blowing up balloons... ...and ringing register at a *BUSY STORE*.

This sort of thing boils my blood, as I watch Costco, Trader Joes, and even goddamn In n Out have more competent people on the bottom rung than the *MANAGER* level coworkers my mother deals with.

I don't know. I sell goods and services at conventions in the dealer room - if there's nobody behind my table, then people walking by *CANT BE SOLD TO*. This is basic shiat, and the only thing I can possibly lay the blame for this failure is a disastrous fixation on short term results and ignoring long term consequences.

And I don't know how to fix that.


Let the store go bust and the better-run competitors take their business.
2013-03-27 04:39:31 AM
1 votes:

Smeggy Smurf: basemetal: Don't forget the micromanaging that walmart does from Bentonville, rather than let managers and employees do their jobs.  Some of the policies and pilot procedures they implement, show that no one that came up with some ideas ever had to work in a real store.

You mean like not letting produce managers order high demand produce when it's running low?  Yeah, there's nothing like running out of sweet onions 3 days before Thanksgiving and not being allowed to call up your buddy at the onion farm 3 miles away to send over a couple crates.  Nope, corporate would rather run out and try to fire the manager for running out.  Nevermind that the manager no longer has any control over the produce stocks.


Hmm, sounds pretty reaso..

Dumb.  That's what a business degree from a liberal college gets you.

You almost managed to write an entire post without blaming "liberals" for everything that's wrong in the world. Don't worry, hon, we're really proud that you're trying, keep it up.

Tomorrow in group session we'll each try to talk about a bad thing or negative experience that liberals weren't responsible for. Don't be nervous, I'll start us off by talking about how one of my shoes came untied earlier this week, and I think cheese boy is ready to admit that maybe it isn't "liberals" who keep drinking the last coffee in the pot.

We'll get there together! With any luck, before long you'll be able to hold entire conversations and not once feel a need to bring up how bad the imaginary liberals that only exist inside your head are.
2013-03-27 02:27:03 AM
1 votes:
Someone should forward that link about CostCo, Trader Joes, and QuikTrip to Wal-Mart brass.
2013-03-27 01:52:45 AM
1 votes:

unyon: I'm inclined to buy Walmart's official story on this from TFA.  It'd hardly be surprising that in some locations there are staffing challenges.  Walmart won't even build a store near Ft MacMurray AB- they know that they won't be able to hire anyone for anywhere close to what makes business sense.


"Business Sense" being the lowest possible wages imaginable to ensure the Walton family hiers (aka Job Creators) don't starve to death.

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jul/18/business/la-fi-mo-walmart-he ir s-20120718
The net worth of the six walmart heirs is a as much as the bottom 40% of americans combined.  I can see why they can't afford to pay a few more people to stock the shelves in the shiatty stores.
2013-03-27 01:44:41 AM
1 votes:

basemetal: Don't forget the micromanaging that walmart does from Bentonville, rather than let managers and employees do their jobs.  Some of the policies and pilot procedures they implement, show that no one that came up with some ideas ever had to work in a real store.


You mean like not letting produce managers order high demand produce when it's running low?  Yeah, there's nothing like running out of sweet onions 3 days before Thanksgiving and not being allowed to call up your buddy at the onion farm 3 miles away to send over a couple crates.  Nope, corporate would rather run out and try to fire the manager for running out.  Nevermind that the manager no longer has any control over the produce stocks.

Dumb.  That's what a business degree from a liberal college gets you.
2013-03-27 12:05:46 AM
1 votes:

basemetal: Don't forget the micromanaging that walmart does from Bentonville, rather than let managers and employees do their jobs.  Some of the policies and pilot procedures they implement, show that no one that came up with some ideas ever had to work in a real store.


Sounds just like CVS.
2013-03-26 09:46:48 PM
1 votes:
It's almost like when you don't pay your workers anything above minimum wage and you intentionally crash the local economy it has consequences.

But please, tell me more about how they're just doing good business practice.
2013-03-26 09:22:28 PM
1 votes:

Nina Haagen Dazs: So where do the people of Wal- Mart go now?


Probably those stores with the word "dollar" in the name.
 
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