Retail Jobs Not so Bad After All?
Two retailers that are to be commended for their efforts in providing workers with fair wages are Costco and The Container Store. Costco's employees make an average of nearly $21 an hour, while The Container Store's average salesperson makes $48,000 per year. Not surprisingly, these two companies have employee turnover rates far lower than the retail industry average, which is approaching 100 percent.
Gap and Ikea have also gotten into the act. After announcing this past February that it was increasing its hourly wages to $10, Gap saw an increase of near 10 percent in job applications from the previous year. Ikea raised the minimum wage of thousands of its retail workers to an average of $10.76 an hour, a 17 percent average raise.
While far from getting rich, retail workers, many of whom work part time and are in their teens and early 20s, are beginning to be fairly compensated for their work. I encourage other retailers to follow the likes of Costco and The Container Store, which are investing in their employees. I agree with their premise that happier employees will treat customers better, which in turn creates happier customers. It's a win-win for all involved — including company stakeholders.
What are your thoughts on this study? Is it biased because it comes from the retail industry's largest trade association? How is your company handling the issue of minimum wage workers? Let us know your thoughts by posting a comment below.