So back in February 2019, Walmart announced it’s getting rid of all it’s greeters. That’s a shocking move for America’s biggest retail chain. But wait…there’s more. Walmart employees: Robots are doing your job.
So let me be specific. First’, they’re letting IT support things like robots serve as janitors. For example, a fleet of 1,500 Auto-C machines will be cleaning and mopping floors. Because according to Wal-Mart spokespeople, they can clean floors better than humans. They can polish floors better, too. Then there is Auto-S, the robot price check. This army of 300 robots will make sure every item on the floor is in the right place and has the right place.
When I worked in retail, one thing we did was get items off the truck and stock them in their proper places. Apparently, those days are over. Because the robots called ‘FAST Unloader’ will sort and scan the products for you now. I’m guessing they will need human beings to get the stuff off the truck. But I think we all know that will change too, if it hasn’t already. There will be 1,000 of those. They even have 900 Pickup Towers. They will process online orders for you. When you get there, the robot, with little human help, will have it ready for you.
So why are they doing this? Walmart says they want their employees to interact with customers more. Therefore, by letting robots do other jobs for them, they can focus more on customer service. I’m, sorry, but I’m not buying it. They’re already getting rid of greeters. And they’re thousands of them. Now, when these robots take over these other manual tasks, chances are Walmart leadership will say, “Well, if robots can do these things, maybe they can do customer service as well.”. I even know consumers who would welcome this. I even hear a few computer repair customers gripe, “I can’t wait until robots take your jobs!”. Walmart employees: Robots are doing your jobs. Where will this really lead: to better customer interaction or outright annihilation of human robot jobs?