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Wal-Mart doing more with less, and struggling, relatively speaking

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Baron Scicluna, Mar 26, 2013.

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  1. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    Interesting story on how Wal-Mart is upsetting its customers by not having their shelves stocked, and long waits in line at the register because there aren't enough workers manning the register.


    You'd think, with more stores, you'd have more employees. Nope. And for the sixth year in a row, they finished last in customer satisfaction, and their competitors are starting to catch up.

    YGBFKM Guest

    Re: Walmart doing more with less, and struggling

    No big deal if Wal-Mart fails. Just raise the minimum wage to $20/hour and everything will be fine.
  3. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    Oh dear. Sounds like they need some more tax breaks and sweetheart utility deals.

    Because, after all, they are Job Creators.
  4. heyabbott

    heyabbott Well-Known Member

    Walmart, keeping Chinese peasants employed since 1995
  5. doctorquant

    doctorquant Well-Known Member

    I bet that stocking bit has less to do with Walmart's staffing policies and more to do with its suppliers finding better options elsewhere (e.g., the Targets and the Kohls and the Walgreens of the world). Much of the stocking in any big retailer is done by suppliers, not employees. I've had a couple of students who were muckety mucks for some of Walmart's suppliers and they tell me that Walmart uses its supplier contracts (which call for cash penalties for errors in quantity/timing of deliveries) as a profit center. Don't know how pervasive it is there, but I'm assured it's not a trivial issue. Perhaps Walmart's still able to squeeze that price out of its suppliers, but that delivery performance may have been the suppliers' safety valve.

    Interesting stuff.

    Kohls is, to me, an intriguing story. I shop there every now and then and, honestly, it's as if I am stepping back in time (with a relatively small footprint and lots of departments). They seem to be doing pretty well.
  6. apeman33

    apeman33 Well-Known Member

    Twice in the last month, I've gone to Walmart and seen it out of bread. At least your basic sandwich bread. You'll see pitas and hot dog buns and maybe rye and potato bread. But no basic white or wheat bread in any brand.

    The first time, I told a friend who works at a different Walmart and she didn't believe me. So the next time I went and saw bare shelves, I took a pic.


    How does a Walmart run out of bread?
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2014
  7. Monday Morning Sportswriter

    Monday Morning Sportswriter Well-Known Member

    Bread is usually ordered and stocked at the distributor level. Soda and chips, too. Recurring problems are the fault of "the bread guy."
  8. TigerVols

    TigerVols Well-Known Member

    I stopped by my main-stay diner for dinner tonight. For the second trip in a row, the wait once I was seated was very long; I asked my waitress (on her second/last stop by my table after serving) why she appeared to be the only waitress. "We only have one wait staff per shift, regardless of time, for all 26 tables" she told me. Turns out the owner had scaled back from 3 to 1.

    He may be saving a little cash, but he's lost this regular customer, and I can't imagine I'm the only one who won't go back for the mediocre food that takes too long to get.

    Economic progress, my ass.
  9. Starman

    Starman Well-Known Member

    I don't have the time or inclination to get into it at full length right now, but some 20+ years ago when I was an ME of a 6-day daily, Wal-Mart wanted to build a Mongo-Center on the outskirts of our fair little town. (Just outside the city limits by strange coincidence.)

    They sent PR functionaries and junior-varsity corporate flunkies to town for months to schmooze me and fill my eyes with visions of sugarplums and all the googoozillions of ad dollars they were going to pump into OUR NEWSPAPER.

    And how totally-groovy-awesome the Wally World on the outskirts was going to be for all the downtown merchants. You see, If They Built It (Wal-Mart), People Would Come. People Would Come, and after shopping at Wal-Mart, of course they were going to want to go downtown and drop more money at the Mom and Pops stores.

    And of course they were going to Create Jobs!!!! And all the workers whose pockets were busting with all that Wal-Mart Cash were gonna come down and make it rain in the Mom and Pops stores.

    See, they needed approval from several government boards, such as the city council, township board and utility district, so they wanted lots and lots and lots of glowing stories (and of course Op-Ed pieces) in the Local Daily Screech about how groovy the whole thing was going to be.

    Eventually, they got to our GM, who was also the ad manager, who ordered me to run some gushing editorials. I wrote a couple and they seemed to be insufficiently enthusiastic, so he wrote 'em himself. "They're gonna buy lots of ads from us," he told me. "Lots and lots of ads."

    They did buy ads for a month or so -- until the boards OKd their demands and construction began. Then all of a sudden, shockingly, the ads dried up overnight. Like somebody tying a knot in a garden hose.

    Quelle surprise.

    Today, the original Wal-Mart sits vacant and abandoned. Right next to it sits another bigger Wal-Mart they built 5-6 years later.

    They never did (and never have) buy any ads in the paper.

    And the downtown mom and pop stores all went belly up within a year.

    And the county social assistance offices (when they're open at all) are filled to overflowing with the families of all those Wal-Mart workers collecting Medicaid, food stamps and other guvvmint moocher goodies. See, all that Wal-Mart Cash seems to cover is ramen noodles for two people for about five nights a week.

    Last time I checked, weeks were seven nights long, and kids like to eat too.
  10. Azrael

    Azrael Well-Known Member

    Not the first of these stories.


  11. doctorquant

    doctorquant Well-Known Member

    He's not saving cash ... he's going out of business. Betcha he was already in trouble before the cut-down (if it was that; he might have just had some attrition).
  12. Brian

    Brian Well-Known Member

    I have a friend whose father is an executive at a furniture company in the Midwest that does about $600 million in sales. Wal-Mart became so intrusive, skinflintish and unreasonable that the company gave them the middle finger and just focused on supplying Target, Ikea and Office Max. The company was counting down the days until they were able to dump the Wal-Mart contract.
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