Photos from Walmart employees show pallets of overstocked items crowding aisles and blocking access to a breastfeeding room as back rooms overflow

Filed in Business by on July 22, 2022 0 Comments

  • Walmart’s inventory on hand shot up 32% last quarter due to inflation and supply chain issues.
  • Employees have documented overflow in stores, including stuffed backrooms and pallets in aisles.
  • Multiple employees told Insider they are close to quitting due to low morale from overstock issues.

Walmart’s excess inventory issues are spilling out into its stores — literally.

After the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retail giant reported a 32% increase in inventory at the end of last quarter, seven current employees have told Insider about “overwhelming” and “ridiculous” working conditions as they sort through unending boxes of overstock.

Three current employees told Insider that backrooms have become so full that stores have had to place pallets of items in store aisles and against walls, much to the ire of customers. Some workers said backrooms have become chaotic and difficult to navigate.

All employees spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear of retaliation. Their identities are known to Insider.

Excess inventory has blocked off private breastfeeding and bathrooms

Breastfeeding room

Walmart excess inventory blocking a private breastfeeding room at a store in Indiana.

Anonymous


Multiple current employees have said towering boxes have blocked access to places like private breastfeeding rooms and bathrooms.

Too many pallets have made floors unwalkable

pallets

Pallets spread all across a Walmart backroom floor in Ohio.

Anonymous


“I can’t even get close to the pallets I need,” said an employee at a Walmart store in Indiana. “Our store has never looked this bad. It’s just overwhelming at this point.”

Overstock is ‘at its worst’ and management has ‘no solutions’

Towering boxes at a Walmart store.

Towering boxes at a Walmart store in Ohio.

Anonymous


An employee at a Walmart store in Georgia said that overstock is “at its worst” in the two years they’ve worked there, and management has “no solutions.”

Meanwhile, Walmart leaders said during their earnings call in May that it would only take “a couple of quarters” to work through the problem.

A Minnesota employee said that their manager told them the freight push of goods will continue until January or February of 2023. One analyst told Insider he expects the overstock issues to continue for Walmart until March 2023.

Employees say inventory is being automatically re-ordered, leading to more overstock

Walmart wings

Pallets of goods and towering boxes at a Walmart store in Florida.

Anonymous


Multiple employees say a new inventory system has automatically ordered supplies already in stock, leading to further overcrowding. A Walmart spokesperson disputed the “auto-order” characterization of this system.

‘Moral is at an absolute low’

Arizona Walmart backroom

A full backroom of a Walmart in Arizona.

Anonymous


The fix can’t come soon enough for employees. Multiple Walmart workers told Insider they’re considering leaving over the issue.

“I’m pretty close to quitting,” said an Ohio employee. “Moral is at an absolute low.”

Read the full Insider story here.

Do you work at a walmart store and have photos or experiences you’d like to share? Contact reporter Ben Tobin via the encrypted messaging app Signal +1 (703) 498-9171 or email at btobin@insider.com. Check out Insider’s source guide for other tips on sharing information securely.

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