Walmart is raising wages to $95,000 up to $110,000 for drivers in their first year with the company. Additionally, drivers who have been with Walmart can earn even more, based on tenure and location. That’s up from the previous starting salary of $87,000. According to Walmart, the average salary for a long-haul driver is $56,491 per year, meaning Walmart can nearly double that starting wage.
Walmart has approximately 12,000 drivers, and the retail industry at large is facing a driver shortage. The retailer also launched its first-ever Private Fleet Development Program. During the 12-week program supply chain associates in Dallas and Dover, Delaware, earned their commercial driver’s license (CDL) and became full-fledged private fleet Walmart drivers.
The training program is in addition to Walmart’s Live Better U (LBU) education benefits, which include tuition and books coverage for college. Walmart was ready to launch a learning ecosystem for a driver pipeline program with its massive infrastructure in place around LBU, but the retailer needed teachers.
Walmart leveraged the established drivers of its private fleet and added another title of Certified Driver Trainers to train the next generation of associates. The trainers completed a specialized training in the Walmart Academies and began working with trainees, teaching written material and overseeing driving.
After classroom training, associates graduate with their CDL through LBU, real-world experience from trained instructors and a dedicated mentor to transition into their new roles.
“Our transportation team will continue to grow with our business, and we’ll continue to invest in them along the way,” Fernando Cortes, senior vice president of transportation, and Karisa Sprague, senior vice president of supply chain people, both with Walmart, wrote in a post announcing the driver raises.