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Walmart Offers Free College Tuition, Books to Employees in US

Over 52,000 employees with 8000 graduated have participated in the programme since 2018.  (Image by Shutterstock/ Representational)

Over 52,000 employees with 8000 graduated have participated in the programme since 2018. (Image by Shutterstock/ Representational)

The firm is investing around $1 billion in the next five years in training and development programmes for its employees in the US.

The largest private employer of the United States of America, Walmart will offer free books and college tuition to its employees. The firm is investing around $1 billion in the next five years in training and development programmes for its employees in the US. This will be for the workers who are interested in fields like cybersecurity, administration and supply chain, which are high demand fields.

Earlier, there was a requirement of a payment of $1 a day for the Walmart and Sam’s Club workforce to be a participant in the program. In a media call, the company’s senior vice president of learning and leadership, Lorraine Stomski said that they are developing opportunities for people at their organisation to have a growing career at Walmart. They are looking at this investment as a way to help their employees follow their passion and purpose.

Walmart’s Live Better U education program will go live on August 16 which was developed three years ago for helping employees grow in the company itself. Under the programme, employees can choose from 10 academic partners to chose from. Over 52,000 employees with 8000 graduated have participated in the programme since 2018. The education offered at Walmart is directly related to its growth areas.

These are the incentives offered by large employers to attract motivated workers and make them stay longer in times of more competitive hiring. Tuition reimbursement has become an attractive perk for employees due to the soaring costs of college. A management professor at the Pennsylvania University told the Washington Post the companies that are genuinely concerned about their image in the labour market are doing these things, but it should be kept in mind that these tuition reimbursements are way more self-interested and targeted than the traditional tuition reimbursement.

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He further told the Washington Post that such initiatives are relatively low-cost corporate investments because very few employees actually sign up for them. For example, at Walmart, less than two per cent of the workforce in the US are the current participants of the program.

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first published:July 28, 2021, 18:57 IST