The Other Half of a Good Job: a Schedule That Works

By Anna Putman
April 29, 2015
Associate Brandon Talking About Flexible Scheduling

One of the biggest challenges of being an hourly worker is maintaining a work schedule that fits your personal life. A manager usually decides when you work, and arranging your daily activities to meet the demands of your job can sometimes get complicated. At Walmart, we want to change that, so we’re working to put systems in place that will give many of our store associates more control over their schedules.

In 2013, when I was a co-manager in Van Buren, Arkansas, I was excited to learn that my store was chosen to pilot a program that would offer many of our associates more choice in their schedules. Having worked in a Walmart store for nearly two decades, beginning as a part-time hourly associate, I know firsthand how difficult scheduling can be, and I was eager to make a difference and improve the process.

In our pilot program, hourly associates who prefer more fixed, consistent schedules have a greater opportunity to work the same hours on the same days based on business needs. Those who prefer more flexibility have greater visibility into shifts that are available and can pick and choose which shifts work for them each week, up to more than two weeks in advance.

Over the last 18 months, more than 60 hourly associates in the Van Buren store alone have moved from part time to full time, just by being able to see available shifts and choose more hours. In fact, we’ve been so pleased with initial results that we expanded the pilot to include stores in Wichita, Kansas; Rockford, Illinois; and Kissimmee, Florida, and it will be available in more U.S. stores in the coming months.

While changing the way we create schedules has been an adjustment for some, the majority of associates in our pilot stores seem happy with the new program. We’ve seen an improvement in attendance and turnover, which, in turn, helps us provide customers a better shopping experience. 

When I started working at Walmart, I never imagined I would still be here 20 years later. I certainly never imagined that I would work my way up at my store to then join the team at the Home Office that’s changing the way we schedule nationwide. That’s what I love about this company. I know that Walmart is continually working to make things better for both customers and associates, and I’m proud to be part of the team that’s making that happen.

Learn more about what Walmart is doing to provide new opportunities for associates at 

http://corporate.walmart.com/working-at-walmart