Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT), the country’s largest private sector employer, could soon become the biggest employer in the United States. Currently, the U.S Military is the top employer in the country with 1,406,000 personnel on active duty. Another 1,400,000 men and women make up the reserves and guard. Wal-Mart, which also runs Sam’s Clubs, employs over 1.3 million people in the country and 2.2 million people worldwide. By hiring 100,000-plus veterans, Wal-Mart could be soon on its way to replacing the military as the country’s biggest employer, (including reserves and guards figures). Additionally, troop levels could be coming down as military operations end overseas.
Bill Simon, president and chief executive of Wal-Mart Store, Inc. (NYSE:WMT)’s U.S. business, announced the plan while addressing at the National Retail Federation conference in New York on Tuesday. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company will hire over 100,000 military veterans over the next five years. Simon said Wal-Mart is already the biggest employer for veterans.
The honorably discharged people who have served the country with dedication will have a place to go. The hiring pledge will cover veterans within 12 months off active duty. Simon said most of the veterans will be placed in Wal-Mart Store, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) and Sam’s Clubs at different locations. Some jobs will also be in distribution centers.
He said that veterans have all the qualities an employer looks for, and hiring them is the best decision any business can make. Veterans are team players, they are quick learners and they have the ability to perform under pressure. Veterans are leaders with a passion, disciplined and trained for service. The military instills in them a sense of purpose and seriousness. That’s why businesses need them today more than ever.
Veterans will start receiving job offers from the discount retailer starting Memorial Day in May. The company said it has already discussed its commitment with the White House. The First Lady, Michelle Obama’s team has expressed interest in working with the world’s largest retailer and the U.S business community.
Soon, the White House will urge the Department of Veteran Affairs to encourage businesses to train and employ America’s returning veterans.