Walmart DCs to Leverage Automation Following Layoffs - Modern Distribution Management

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Walmart DCs to Leverage Automation Following Layoffs

Walmart said it expects about 65% of its stores to be serviced by automation by the end of its fiscal year 2026

Regulatory filings and media reports show that Walmart will cut more than 2,000 jobs at five of its U.S. eCommerce fulfillment centers as it sharpens its focus on leveraging automation amid layoffs.

Among the job losses are more than 1,000 at a warehouse in Fort Worth, Texas, according to the state’s workforce commission. Almost 600 jobs will also be cut at a fulfillment center in Pennsylvania, 400 in Florida, and about 200 in New Jersey. An additional reduction is planned in California, according to filings and media reports from outlets including Bloomberg and Reuters. 

“We are in a unique position to serve our customers and members however they want to shop, which will fuel continued growth,” Walmart President and CEO Doug McMillon said in the company’s April 3 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. “As we grow, we will improve our operating margin through productivity advancements and our category and business mix, and drive returns through operating margin expansion and capital prioritization.”

The company said it expects about 65% of its stores to be serviced by automation by the end of its fiscal-year 2026. Walmart said that about 55% of packages it processes through its fulfillment centers will be moved through automated facilities by then as well, improving unit cost averages by about 20%.

Walmart confirmed staffing cuts at its warehouses last month without quantifying them in regulatory filings. A spokesman for Walmart said the company is also growing in some areas as it adjusts its stores and fulfillment centers to handle more online orders, Bloomberg reported. That may enable the retailer to reshuffle some workers to other jobs rather than cut them.

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