Walmart Automating Supply Chain for Half Its StoresWalmart Automating Supply Chain for Half Its Stores
The news comes as part of Walmart’s plan to automate and connect its supply chain, in a bid to boost productivity and improve customer experience
April 6, 2023
Walmart plans to have 65% of its stores serviced by automation by 2026. The announcement was made at the retailer's annual investor meeting in Tampa, Florida.
Automation technologies are being ramped up at the retailer's fulfillment centers, with the company saying approximately 55% of fulfillment center packages will be processed through automated facilities by 2026, improving unit cost averages by around 20%.
The news comes several days after the retailer announced more than 2,000 layoffs at its facilities to fulfill online orders, though it is not clear whether the push for automation will have an impact on this.
"As the changes are implemented across the business, one of the outcomes is roles that require less physical labor but have a higher rate of pay," the company said in a statement. "Over time, the company anticipates increased throughput per person, due to the automation while maintaining or even increasing its number of associates as new roles are created.”
The news comes as part of Walmart’s plan to automate and connect its supply chain, in a bid to boost productivity and improve customer experience. As part of this, the company is implementing data monitoring, robotics and intelligent software technologies in its supply chain to improve inventory accuracy and flow.
“We believe that we have the building blocks in place to help define the next chapter of retail and do so while driving strong growth and shareholder returns,” said John David Rainey, Walmart’s executive vice president.
Walmart has been increasingly turning to digital solutions for its warehouses and stores, with tools including curbside robots, delivery drones and driverless delivery trucks all announced in the past year.
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