Walmart Reveals Pivotal New Supply Chain Strategy; Joe Metzger Shares
BENTONVILLE, AR - If you are an avid reader of ANUK, then you are well aware of the pressing challenges impacting the supply chain and the ambitious strategies many companies are implementing to overcome them. Walmart can be found amongst this list, as the retailer has just unveiled a new blueprint to fortify its supply chain operations.
“Increased demand for the products customers want is nothing new for this time of year, and it’s certainly nothing new for Walmart. We’ve been delivering the holidays for over 50 years. This year, we’re doing even more to help ensure product orders arrive when customers need them,” Joe Metzger, Executive Vice President of Supply Chain Operations, said in a recent blog post.
To streamline its operations and improve supply chain efficiencies, Walmart has chartered ships and diverted shipments through less congested ports to ensure goods will continue to arrive on time, in addition to rerouting shipments through the use of less conventional transportation methods.
The company has also undergone critical expansions to meet demand amidst ongoing supply chain disruptions, including adding storage capacity to its fulfillment and distribution network through the development of new facilities. Walmart is also working to expand its automation capabilities in its existing facilities to help get products from distribution centers to stores faster, as well as building out its delivery capabilities and routing online orders straight from store locations.
“Knowing the challenges the overall supply chain system is facing, we’re taking additional steps to navigate the hurdles and minimize disruption, so we can deliver for our customers this holiday season,” Metzger noted in his statement. “We’ve worked with suppliers to source holiday merchandise earlier than usual and are finding ways to move those products inside our supply chain network as quickly as possible. We have been laser-focused on inventory levels since the start of the pandemic and reported higher inventory in the second quarter this year than a year ago. While we’d like to see inventory levels continue to improve, we’re on the right track.”
As part of its ambitious supply chain strategy, Walmart has also made vital investments in its workforce, ensuring it has enough employees to meet demand as the holidays near. To do so, the company has invested in higher wages for its supply associates and is hiring 20,000 permanent supply chain positions to help move products through its facilities as quickly as possible.
In addition, the retailer has trained and promoted thousands of supply chain associates, with plans to continue doing so in the future. The company has also hired over 3,000 drivers this year, with more expected to be hired, and is working diligently to onboard 150,000 associates across the country to prepare for an increase in sales. Between these and other supply chain hirings, the blitz includes roughly 173,000 new employees.
“We’ve always been committed to delivering everything customers need for a great holiday, and I’m proud of the hard work our associates are doing to put Walmart in a position to do that again this year,” Metzger added. “We know there is a lot of uncertainty as the pandemic continues and customer needs continue to adjust as we head into the 2021 holiday season, but I’m confident in our efforts. Customers can rest assured we’re doing everything we can to deliver a holiday experience they’ve come to expect…”
As more companies unveil innovative methods to overcome the challenges currently impacting the supply chain, keep an eye out for the next update from AndNowUKnow.