Trader Joe’s, Kroger, Whole Foods, Wegmans, Walmart, and More Offer Employee Bonuses
UNITED STATES - Grocery retailers big and small, regional and national, are once again proving to be leaders of our industry. As COVID-19 continues to develop and alter the grocery supply chain, companies like Kroger, Walmart, Trader Joe’s, Sobeys, Wegmans, Raley’s, Weis Markets, Stop & Shop, and more are implementing a new strategy to ensure their stores are well-stocked and that their employees are taken care of—by either offering workers bonuses or increasing their pay.
Kroger announced over the weekend that it will be awarding appreciation bonuses for its associates. According to a press release, the grocer will provide a one-time bonus to every hourly frontline grocery, supply chain, manufacturing, and customer service associate, amounting to $300 for every full-time associate and $150 for every part-time associate.
“Grocery workers are on the frontlines, ensuring Americans have access to the food and products they need during this unprecedented pandemic,” said Rodney McMullen, Kroger's Chairman and CEO. “Our associates are working around the clock to keep our stores open for our customers. I am incredibly grateful for all they are doing. The true heroes in this story are our associates, and we want to provide them with additional resources and support to help them continue their remarkable effort.”
Walmart joined Kroger in awarding bonuses, which total nearly $550 million for hourly associates, according to a press release. On top of the special bonus, Walmart will also accelerate the next scheduled quarterly bonus for its store, club, and supply chain associates a month early, which will add up to $180 million. In addition, the grocery giant also raised the minimum wage for its e-commerce warehouse employees by $2, Seeking Alpha reported.
“Walmart associates have gone above and beyond the call of duty in serving our customers during these unprecedented times,” said Doug McMillon, President and CEO, Walmart. “We want to reward our associates for their hard work and recognize them for the work that is in front of us.”
Whole Foods, Wegmans, Weis Markets, Target, and Canadian retail giants Sobeys, Loblaw, and Metro all are offering a $2-an-hour increase to their grocery staff, in the same vein as Walmart. Additional buy-side heavyweights are taking care of their own, like UNFI, who is echoing the latest moves of industry leaders with full-time and part-time direct labor associates and drivers receiving a Temporary State of Emergency Bonus of $2 per hour on top of their regular wages and overtime hours for time worked through March 31, the company stated in a press release.
Sacramento native Raley’s also recognized the dedication of its team members and announced it will be giving a one-time award to all its hourly employees. And, according to Mass Live, Stop & Shop’s 70,000+ workers along the East Coast will receive a 10 percent pay raise.
And last, but certainly not least, cult grocery icon Trader Joe’s has started a bonus pool for its employees—a “special bonus pool” that will be divided equally among store employees based on their hours worked during a sales period, a memo disclosed, obtained by Business Insider.
"We want to acknowledge the incredible hard work and dedication of our Crew Members in supporting each other and our communities by sharing the financial benefit of this sales increase with our store crew who have worked so hard during the past several weeks, and for as long as this challenge remains," the memo said.
As grocery retailers continue to implement top-of-the-line strategies to keep the industry strong during this time, AndNowUKnow will continue to follow along with the latest updates.