Sept. 23 (UPI) -- Walmart announced Wednesday it will hire 20,000 seasonal workers in the United States for the holiday season, partly to handle what's expected to be a major increase in online sales.
The retailer said it will hire workers at fulfillment centers and other locations to help with the rise in digital orders.
Walmart said it will pay workers between $15.75 and $23.75 per hour. Open positions will range from order fillers to power equipment operators and the company said employees in many cases will begin working within 48 hours of their hire.
Walmart said the new workers will help address three key trends it expects to see this holiday season -- an increase in online sales, evolving wish lists and a need for a fast and safe shopping experience.
The company said it's made 500,000 new hires since March in an effort to beef up staff to handle online sales related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We want to ensure we're staffed and ready to help deliver that special gift to their loved ones while continuing to fulfill our customer's everyday needs."
Walmart said it will continue post-pandemic measures through the end of the year, including reduced store hours, mandatory mask usage, sneeze guards and managed foot traffic.
Some analysts expect holiday spending could increase between 1% and 2.6% this year.