Coronavirus Sparks Hiring Spree for Nearly 500,000 Jobs at Biggest Retailers

From The Wall Street Journal:

Walmart Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and CVS Health Corp. are among about a dozen large companies looking to hire nearly 500,000 Americans in coming weeks, a spree that would mark a major shift of the U.S. workforce from smaller businesses and others that have cut staff to survive the coronavirus.

The companies are managing a surge in demand for food and other household products that have taxed their stores and warehouses. At the same time, they are seeking to lure hourly workers to front-line or logistics jobs where they face risks of being near co-workers or consumers who could have been exposed to the deadly respiratory virus.

“There are too many customers for our staffing to handle most of the time,” said Cody Clark, who works at Brookshire’s Food & Pharmacy in Tyler, Texas. Ms. Clark, 22 years old, said she has been nervous about going to the store. “Customers come in and get frustrated whenever we don’t have something. They don’t understand we’re putting ourselves out there.”

. . . .

Many of the big chains have started offering enhanced benefits, such as paid sick time and child-care services, even for temporary or part-time workers. They have also temporarily boosted their hourly wages or promised cash bonuses for the people who run cash registers, unload trucks or work in e-commerce warehouses.

Separately, Instacart Inc., a grocery-delivery company, said Monday it plans to add 300,000 workers over the next three months, more than doubling the size of its current workforce of about 200,000. As part of the effort, the closely held company is looking to bring on 54,000 workers in California and 27,000 in New York. Instacart shoppers, who fill grocery orders for customers, are independent contractors who get paid per delivery.

In recent weeks, Instacart’s number of orders has more than doubled, and the size of its orders from the year prior has increased by 15%. The company also started offering up to 14 days of pay for its shoppers affected by Covid-19 or placed in mandatory quarantine.

Link to the rest at The Wall Street Journal (PG apologizes for the paywall, but hasn’t figured out a way around it.)

PG notes the link to the WSJ story was posted late on Monday night and there was no permalink available (as is normal with WSJ articles), so the link may change before some visitors to TPV have a chance to read the OP.

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