Walmart to Close Underperforming U.S. Stores & Relocate Staff

Walmart to Close Underperforming U.S. Stores & Relocate Staff

News by Marge SerranoMarge Serrano
Published: February 15, 2023

In the recent turn of events, Walmart Inc follows the rounds of layoffs in tech, announcing on Monday that its closing three of its U.S. technology hubs and relocating workers to keep their jobs. 

Nearly all technology employees across the company would be expected to work in their offices for at least two days a week, added Robert Munroe, Walmart's director of global communications. 

The big-box retailer would close offices that housed technology staff in Austin, Texas, in Carlsbad, California and in Portland, Oregon, Munroe said.  

The operations would move to hubs including one in San Bruno, California or the company's headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, he said, citing a memo sent last week by Walmart's global technology head, Suresh Kumar. 

"We have decided, looking at our location strategy, that we will exit those three hubs," he said, adding that the combined employment at the three offices was in the hundreds. 

"Everything is variable; there is no set date that (this transfer) must be completed," he added. The company currently has 11 tech hubs in the U.S. and six abroad, according to its website. 

Munroe said Walmart, “which employs more than 1.3 million people in the United States, would pay transfer costs of workers who moved and make severance payments to those who decided to leave the company.” 

The directive on returning to the office follows similar requirements from several other U.S. companies, including Walt Disney Co, Uber and Starbucks. 

"We believe the future in tech will be one in which working virtually will be the new normal, at least for most of the work we lead," Suresh Kumar wrote two years ago. 

Munroe confirmed that, "this (move) is still within line to that language," but they are keeping their business operations strong and revenue intact. 

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