- Aldi announced on Monday plans to hire more than 20,000 employees in the U.S. to staff up ahead of the holiday season.
- The grocer said it will host a hiring week from Sept. 20-24 to interview prospective employees for roles, including store associate, cashier, stocker and warehouse associate across its more than 2,100 stores and 25 warehouses.
- The discounter is highlighting its recent pay increases as the labor shortage drives grocers to revisit their wages and benefits to attract workers.
The current labor shortage has spotlighted pay as grocers face hiring competition with restaurants and other industries. In recent months, grocers have rolled out hefty signing bonuses and increased pay. In announcing its hiring push, Aldi said it recently boosted its average starting wages for store and warehouse workers to $15 and $19 per hour, respectively, based on location and job position.
“Employees come to ALDI for the competitive pay and opportunity to work for a growing national brand,” Dave Rinaldo, co-president of Aldi U.S., said in the press release.
In June, average hourly pay for grocery workers rose above $15 for the first time — up 7% since the beginning of the pandemic, according to Labor Department data reviewed by The Washington Post.
It's now more common for retailers to pay at least $15 an hour, which is more than double the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. While efforts to raise the federal minimum wage, which hasn’t seen an increase in more than a decade, failed, some major retailers, including Amazon in 2018 and Target in 2020, have raised their starting hourly wage to $15 or more. Earlier this year, Costco raised its hourly minimum wage to $16 for U.S. employees.
But retailers and labor experts have said other benefits, like flexible scheduling, and incentives are important to drawing in employees as well. Both Walmart and Target, for example, have announced recent initiatives to help employees pay for college.
While Aldi didn’t mention the labor shortage in its hiring announcement, the grocer noted the thousands of new jobs come at a time when it is aggressively expanding across the U.S., which includes plans to open 100 stores this year. The German discount grocer says it’s on track to become the third-largest grocer by store count in the U.S. by the end of next year.