Monday, September 19, 2016

Walmart to cut 7,000 back-office accounting, invoicing jobs

Nathan Bomey, USA TODAY 8:53 p.m. EDT September 1, 2016

Walmart plans to shed about 7,000 store accounting and invoicing positions as the company moves to automate those processes, though workers will be offered positions elsewhere in their stores, the company confirmed Thursday.

The big-box retailer's plans affect less than 1% of its U.S. workforce of 1.5 million employees.

The move, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, comes after the company tested accounting and invoicing automation at about 500 of its nearly 4,600 stores earlier this summer.

The company is implementing automated cash-counting technology at its stores and switching bookkeeping functions from back-office sites at stores to its headquarters in Bentonville, Ark.

"We've seen some pretty strong success on the pilot and have decided to roll it out across all of our U.S. stores," Walmart spokesperson Deisha Galberth said.

The chain said workers will be transitioned into other roles that involve interacting with customers, though they may get pay cuts.

Galberth described the automated "cash recycling machine" as a "quicker, safer and more secure" step to modernize Walmart's store accounting processes.

The transition will take several months, she said.

"There are roles for all of these folks and we are aiming to have everyone transition into those roles wherever possible," she said.

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