Lowe's Lays off Thousands, Outsources Maintenance and Assembly Jobs
Marking yet another major layoff announcement in less than a week, Lowe’s is in the process of handing out pink slips to thousands of workers as they begin outsourcing various jobs to third-party companies. Those impacted by the business move include maintenance staff, like janitors, and assemblers who put together items like grills, wheelbarrows, and patio furniture.
Lowe’s wouldn’t reveal the exact number of positions that would be eliminated because they’re hoping to retain some workers within other open positions across their 1,800 stores. Employees will receive transition pay upon being excused, and Lowe's will encourage them to re-apply for another job within the company.
"We are moving to third-party assemblers and facility services to allow Lowe's store associates to spend more time on the sales floor serving customers," said Lowe’s spokeswoman Jackie Hartzell.
Lowe’s has been making a slew of changes under CEO Marvin Ellison, who joined the company last year after serving as CEO of J.C. Penney. He added several retail veterans to the executive leadership team, closed 20 US stores, discontinued the company’s 99 Orchard Supply Hardware stores, exited the Mexican business, and cut down on inventory.
"We made a lot of progress, but our transformation is clearly ongoing," Ellison told analysts in May.
The Dealerscope Top 101 company also announced plans to open a tech hub in South End, Charlotte this past June. The 23-story tower would house around 2,000 employees whose average salaries would be more than $117,000. Lowe’s could potentially receive over $72 million in combined state a local incentives for the tech hub, according to the Charlotte Observer.
"In this very challenging retail landscape, we're fortunate to be in a sector with high demand," Ellison said at a retail conference in June. "We're focused on what we call retail fundamentals."