Nearly a year after Walmart announced it would give 40% of its employees – mostly minimum wage workers – a pay increase, the nation’s largest retailer plans to give all employees, about 1.2 million of them, an earnings boost.
Reuters reports that Walmart will give nearly all of its hourly store employees a 2% pay increase starting Feb. 20.
Under the program, which applies to workers hired before Jan. 1, 2016 at Sam’s Club and Walmart stores, Walmart will boost pay for employees to at least $10 an hour, an increase from the current rate of $9 per hour.
The pay boost is part of the retailer’s previously announced two-year, $2.7 billion investment in wages, benefits, and training unveiled last year.
Last April, the company increased entry-level pay to $9 an hour.
The retailer said at the time that it hoped the wage increase would result in better worker retention and customer service.
“We’re seeing strong increases in both customer experience and associate engagement scores,” Judith McKenna, chief operating officer for Walmart’s U.S. operations, tells Reuters.
Walmart says the newest raises were already incorporated into financial forecasts unveiled in October 2015.
Wednesday’s announcement comes just days after Walmart announced it would close 154 stores in the U.S., ending its “Walmart Express” experiment.