- As labor shortages continue for retailers, Williams-Sonoma on Thursday announced it has raised its minimum wage to $15 an hour.
- The increase, effective immediately, is part of Williams-Sonoma's effort to provide competitive pay to associates, the company said in a press release.
- The wage increase applies to workers in all areas of the company, including customer care centers, supply chain and store employees.
While Congress may have blocked a provision to increase the federal minimum wage earlier this year, several companies have been taking their own steps to increase hourly pay for workers.
Williams-Sonoma's announcement is the latest in a flurry of retailers that have committed to raising wages for employees. Walmart last month increased its hourly pay by $1 for 565,000 associates, while Amazon announced average starting pay would exceed $18 an hour for some roles. Meanwhile, Target in June 2020 set its starting wage at $15 an hour, and Costco in March this year surpassed that mark by raising its minimum wage to $16 per hour in the U.S.
"Putting our people first is one of our core values and guides our decision-making in how we invest in our associates with meaningful and competitive pay," Williams-Sonoma CEO Laura Alber said in a statement. "Our talented associates in our supply chain, stores, care centers and corporate offices are dedicated to taking care of our customers every day and we are proud to take this step to reward and recognize them for their hard work and contributions."
More retailers have been sweetening their perks as they struggle to fill jobs. Aside from wage increases, Amazon last month announced it would cover the cost of college tuition, high school diplomas, GEDs and English as a Second Language certifications for all front-line employees in the U.S. as part of its Career Choice program. Target over the summer introduced an education assistance program for full- and part-time employees based in the U.S. And Walmart committed to paying the full cost of college tuition and books for associates through its Live Better U education program.
This comes as retailers try to increase their hiring efforts around the all-important holiday season. Already this year, Amazon, Target, and Walmart have announced plans to hire at least 100,000 workers each ahead of the holiday season.