Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Walmart.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Walmart Chief Executive Doug McMillon said Friday that the retailer’s corporate staff as well as its management-level employees must be vaccinated against Covid by Oct. 4, according to a memo obtained by CNBC.
The mandate applies to all home office associates, in addition to market, regional and divisional employees who work in multiple facilities, the nation’s largest private employer said.
Walmart said it will continue to monitor the situation of the health crisis to determine if it needs to change its return to work plans. As of now, the company expects that shortly after Labor Day its headquarters staffing will be near the levels it was before the pandemic began.
McMillon said the company has been using a phased approach to bring workers back, only allowing limited capacity for now.
“We want to get to a place where we can use our offices and be together safely,” he said in the memo. “It’s important for our business, our culture, our speed and our innovation.”
The notice came just shortly after Walmart said it would begin requiring masks for store workers in high-risk counties in the U.S. as determined by the latest CDC rankings, regardless of vaccine status and effective immediately.
It has also doubled the incentive for staff in stores and warehouses to get a Covid vaccine, to $150. Employees who have already received the $75 incentive will receive another $75 in their paycheck dated Aug. 19, the company said Friday.
On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a fresh recommendation that calls for wearing face masks again in areas of the country where the Covid-19 virus is spreading the most rapidly. That covers about two-thirds of all counties in the U.S.