For over 30 years, Walmart has hired "People Greeters" to welcome customers to the low-cost retailer. It was Sam Walton's idea. But Sam is gone, and four months ago Walmart stopped scheduling greeters to work the night-shift, and now they are eliminating the role all together.
Walmart says the Greeter's jobs are secure. David Tovar, a Walmart spokesman is quoted as saying "They're not going anywhere," with employees being shifted to customer service reps on the store floor.
The shift, accordig to Tovar is a way to rein in costs and prices. Back in September, most night-shift greeters were assigned to other roles, "and a very small percentage ended up leaving the company," said Tovar. But that's not what's happening here, he emphasized. Walmart had given greeters extra responsibilities over the years, he explained, like helping customers return products, and cleaning and prepping carts. The change frees greeters from these other duties, so that they can "really focus on customer service," he said, and interact more with customers while they're in the store.