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06/16/2022

Walmart raises pay of pharmacy workers

Marianne Wilson
Editor-in-Chief
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A Walmart pharmacy technician
Walmart is raising the average pay of its pharmacy technicians to more than $20 an hour.

Walmart is increasing wages for its pharmacy workers.

The country’s largest private employer is increasing the average hourly wage of its 36,000-plus Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacy technicians to more than $20 an hour and will offer more frequent raises. Walmart also said that it plans to hire about 5,000 additional pharmacy technicians this year.

The increase, effective this week, is the second pay increase during the past year for Walmart pharmacy workers. They received hikes of at least $1 to their base pay in August 2021. (Starting pay for the technicians will remain the same, ranging from $15 to $22.50, with certified techs starting at $16.50 and higher).

In addition, pharmacy techs will get more frequent, automatic pay raises as part of a new, “progressive” wage model that Walmart said is designed to set it apart from the competition.  New pharmacy technicians, for example, will get raises that can add up to $4 to their starting base pay over the course of four years.  Pharmacy technicians will get raises every six months in their first two years with the company.

“We believe we are among the first large retailers to incorporate this kind of model – an approach that’s commonly seen in health care systems,” Kevin Host, senior VP, Walmart Health & Wellness, pharmacy, and Sean Jackson, senior VP, Sam’s Club GMM, health and wellness/consumables, wrote in a blog on the company’s website. “This will help associates increase their pay more quickly as they build their careers and continue working at Walmart.”

Walmart noted that the new investments work in tandem with its commitment to pay for eligible associates to become certified pharmacy technicians through benefits such as Live Better U and related programs.

Walmart said its certified pharmacy technicians can make $3 more per hour than their non-certified peers. To remove any roadblocks, Walmart covers the costs for getting certified to be a pharmacy technician – from career diplomas, on-the-job training and test prep, to paying the certification exam fee.