Sunday, September 30, 2007

Wal of the Worlds

I see there is yet another Walgreen's opening in town. This time at the corner of Iles and Koke Mill. Not to be confused with the one at Parkway Point. Or the one at Monroe and Lawrence. Or the one at Jefferson and Chatham.

Wal-Mart is battled at every turn in an effort to keep it from taking over the world when it tries to put up a new store. It looks to me as though there is another 'Wal' store on the march. Walgreen's is well on it's way to being the master of the universe while we are all distracted by the shiny yellow smiley face!

And speaking of Wal-Mart, here's a factoid I was unaware of:
Labor expenses only amount to about 10% of revenues for Wal-Mart. If you increased the pay of every single clerk, greeter, and stocker in the chain by two or three bucks an hour, it would only increase Wal-Mart's prices by about 2%. Their prices would still be the lowest around because it's not labor costs that account for most of their efficiency. It's world class logistics, aggressive offshoring, enormous sales volumes, and ruthless bargaining with suppliers that accounts for most of it.

If Wal-Mart had to offer low wages and lousy benefits just to stay in business, that would be one thing. But they don't.

4 comments:

JeromeProphet said...

Here's another factoid.

Walmart must replace half it's workforce each year. The average worker at Walmart has worked for Walmart for just six months.

Walmart must hire over 40,000 workers each month just to replace those who have quit, or were let go.

This means that when you walk into a Walmart, looking for the ever allusive clerk odds are you know more about where an item is than the Walmart employee.

The main difficulty with Walmart keeping employees - low pay, and poor benefits.

The cost to Walmart in training cost - millions.

JP

JeromeProphet said...

My own opinion of Walmart is that the store on the South West side of town has become increasingly dirty. The floor is dirtier each time I go.

There are usually palettes of stock not yet placed on shelves.

It is nearly impossible to find a clerk, and when you do while they are helpful they appear to be under enormous pressure not to spend even one second longer with you than they must - which isn't a good interaction from a customer point of view.

Then there's the general decline of quality of goods sold at Walmart. I personally have noticed that just about every category of item Walmart sells is becoming shoddier and shoddier in quality.

Then there's the layout and appearance of the store. It appears as if no one cares. Nothing changes, or when it does it doesn't change much, and never for the better.

It's as if Walmart is saying, we know you only came for the cheap prices so we'll give you what you deserve - the worst shopping experience in town.

Walmart headquarters is actually beginning to see declines in sales due to their obsession on cheap Chinese made junk, and their lack of respect for American shoppers.

Could Walmart go the way of KMart?

Dave said...

I've always thought Springfield's oldest Wal-Mart was unusually dirty and even a little dim in terms of lighting. I've been in a lot of Wal-Marts and it is by far the worst I've seen anywhere.

rickmonday said...

I hate going into WalMart. The other shoppers are so pretentious and snooty. That is why I shop at Dollar General. There you dont feel like you have to get dressed up to shop like you do at WalMart.