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Walmart says managers can now earn up to $400,000 a year — no college degree needed

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Walmart said its store managers can now earn up to $400,000 annually, with the company announcing on Monday that it will give $20,000 in stock grants each year to Supercenter managers. 

"We ask our managers to own their roles and act like owners — and now, they'll literally be owners," said Walmart U.S. CEO John Furner in a video posted to LinkedIn. 

Managers of Walmart Supercenters will receive $20,000 annually beginning in April, Furner added. The move to provide stock  comes as the retailing giant recently boosted the average base pay for managers to $128,000, up 9% from $117,000 per year in 2023. 

On top of that, managers can earn up to 200% of their base pay as yearly bonuses, based on their stores' sales and profits, or an additional $256,000 annually. With the higher base pay and stock grants, that means managers can earn up to $404,000 per year. 

"It's a far more complex job today than when I managed a store," Furner said. 

Walmart operates about 4,600 stores in the U.S., as well as about 600 Sam's Clubs.

No college degree needed

The boost to Walmart managers' pay provides a pathway to a lucrative career to almost any worker, Walmart said. It noted that a college degree isn't required to become a manager, and that 3 in 4 people in management roles at its stores, clubs or supply chain divisions started as hourly workers. 

On average, it requires about 5 years to move from an entry-level role to management, the company added.

But despite Walmart's note that the job is open to people without college degrees, the company recently started a campaign to recruit recent college graduates. The program is aimed at strengthening Walmart's talent pipeline, according to the Wall Street Journal.

While the pay bump is good news for Walmart's managers, the pay boost widens the gap between the company's top employees and its rank-and-file workers. Walmart last year increased its U.S. employees' starting wages to between $14 to $19 an hour, depending on location. 

Walmart stock grants

Walmart said that managers of other stores will receive smaller stock grants, with Neighborhood Markets and smaller Walmart stores receiving $15,000 annually in stock. Hometown store managers will receive $10,000 per year. 

Walmart shares have gone up 16% in the past 12 months.

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