Walmart Inc. is giving its truck drivers a pay hike, with wages rising to as much as $110,000 in the first year.
The Walmart Private Fleet has 12,000 drivers, and those who have been on the job longer can earn even more. Walmart quotes data showing that the average truck driver salary is $56,491.
“The investments in pay and training build on multiple recent driver bonuses and improved schedules that enable drivers to spend more time at home,” wrote Fernando Cortes, Walmart’s senior vice president of transportation, and Karisa Sprague, the company’s senior vice president of supply chain people, in a joint blog post on the company’s website.
The two executives write that the transportation team will continue to grow.
is also launching the Private Fleet Development Program, a 12-week training program that will help prospective truckers get their commercial driver’s license (CDL). The program also offers mentorship and training on the road.
Walmart is paying for trainees in some areas to earn their CDL, which can cost as much as $5,000, according to the company.
See: U.S. ports brace for possible summer surge after backlog from COVID-related disruptions
Supply chain disruptions during the pandemic drove transportation hurdles so high that companies, including Walmart, took extreme measures to get merchandise where it needed to be during the holidays. Disruptions included factory closures overseas and a shortage of drivers to transport items once they were off cargo ships in the U.S.
Supply chain risks continue into 2022 as the pandemic persists and companies, drivers, and others across the system struggle to transform the supply chain to manage ongoing challenges and a consumer shift to e-commerce.
Also: This is how America’s booming demand for goods shattered the supply chain
Read: Here’s how retailers are tackling the delivery challenges that come with skyrocketing e-commerce sales post-COVID
Walmart has also turned its focus to other parts of the supply chain, like distribution and fulfillment centers and the delivery function, often using technology to create new efficiencies.
Walmart stock has run up 11.6% over the past year, outpacing the Dow Jones Industrial Average
which is up 2.6%.