Walmart To Give Employees A Free Smartphone

( )- In what it calls the “first of its kind in retail,” Walmart has developed a new app called [email protected] as a way for employees to manage their work and schedules. And to ensure every Walmart employee can use it, the company will be giving each of their 740,000 in-store employees a free Samsung smartphone. The company hopes to have these smartphones in the hands of every Walmart associate by the end of the year.

The retail cost of the Samsung Galaxy XCover Pro is $499.00.

But these smartphones will not be strictly “work phones.” Employees, who will also be provided free phone cases as well as protection plans, will be able to use their new smartphones for personal use as well.

The [email protected] app is designed to replace the handheld devices Walmart employees currently used while on the job.

The company-wide smartphone app will allow scheduling, push-to-talk, signing into work by phone, as well as a voice-activated personal assistant.

In the coming months Walmart plans to add a feature that will help shorten the time it takes employees to get items from the stockroom to the sales floor.

Walmart has promised that providing personal smartphones to employees will not give the corporation access to employee personal data. Once the smartphones are received, Walmart associates are welcome to include any features or privacy measures they like.

Testing of [email protected] will be expanded company-wide by the end of the year.

The COVID pandemic was a boon to America’s largest retail store. While tens of thousands of small businesses were crippled or closed, Walmart’s online store saw a whopping 97% increase in profits during the government-imposed lockdowns.

As a result of the increased profits, in February, Walmart announced pay increases for almost one third of its 1.6 million US workforce. The pay increases covered Walmart employees in both in-store locations as well as the online store. The new hourly rates range from between $13/hr and $19/hr – depending on location and market.