Hy-Vee to Move 500 HQ Workers to Store-Based Roles
Grocery chain Hy-Vee says it will ask up to 500 of its employees to move from corporate-level jobs to retail positions at its stores. The move comes after the company already eliminated 121 corporate-level positions in March. Hy-Vee says 102 of those employees were offered retail positions. In addition to shifting employees' jobs, the company said it will be pausing several projects, including a new warehouse in Cumming, Iowa. The company blamed, among other things, rising inflation, increasing fuel and construction costs, and supply chain disruptions for the moves.
Total Retail's Take: This is an interesting move by Hy-Vee, as the grocer is seeking to fill a need for talent in its stores by looking to an unexpected source: its corporate workforce. Hy-Vee has been challenged by many external factors (e.g., inflation, supply chain challenges, labor shortages), so to create some business continuity and save on recruiting costs it will transition corporate employees into store-based positions. The employees are familiar with Hy-Vee's culture and thus figure to need shorter onboarding periods, enabling them to step in and contribute to improving the in-store experience quickly. Furthermore, the retailer will save on costs from this planned transition. With traditional grocery chains fending off increased competition from online merchants entering the category, innovative, out-of-the-box thinking will potentially be needed to succeed going forward. Hy-Vee is taking the first steps in that direction.