Archive for Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Area residents seeking jobs with Wal-Mart

Donna Guyer, Lawrence, discusses her financial prospects and why she's applying to work at the Wal-Mart opening on Sixth Street.

February 11, 2009


Dozens turn out to apply at Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart announced it would hire 235 workers for the new Lawrence location. Enlarge video

After layoff notices have begun to pile up locally, area residents turned out in strong numbers to try to land a job with the city’s newest Wal-Mart.

“It has been busy all day long,” Ryan Edwards, store manager, said of people coming to the retailer’s temporary hiring center on South Iowa Street. “We’ve been real pleased with the turnout.”

Edwards on Wednesday afternoon was still tallying the number of applications the company received at the Lawrence Workforce Center, 2540 Iowa Street, but said it was obvious there was an eager workforce in the area.

Since December, the area has seen layoffs at a host of East Hills Business Park firms, and on a smaller scale, at Kansas University.

Wal-Mart plans to open its second Lawrence store on April 29 at the intersection of Sixth Street and Wakarusa Drive. The store is slated to employ about 235 people in a mix of full- and part-time positions.

The company will keep its temporary hiring center open on South Iowa through at least late March. The center’s hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.


kuwxlady 9 years, 3 months ago

oh wow...recorded interviews with applicants! the apocalypse is here!!!

monkeyhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

"And the pay you get for working there will be invested right back to Walmart because people who work there for Wal-mart wages can only afford to shop at Walmart."Then there are people like me who can afford to shop anywhere they please, who will shop there as an act of protest against elitist snobs.

sourpuss 9 years, 3 months ago

I haven't shopped at a Wal-mart in years. I'm not a fan of the mega-store format anyway, I prefer smaller stores that specialize in certain types of products. I guess you pay more, but I can reach the shelves, there aren't a bunch of brain-dead zombies with huge carts getting in my way, and I don't have to deal with "greeters". Of course, I live in a big city now so I have corner shops within walking distance.I remember in E. Lawrence near my house, a person wanted to open a local store/grocery and was told he couldn't because of lack of parking space. Well, duh, it was supposed to be a NEIGHBORHOOD store, not a Wal-mart. Sigh.

introversion 9 years, 3 months ago

Wal Mart is only in town because people are too lazy not to shop there. My favorite complainers are the ones who talk badly about Wal Mart but still choose to shop there. Often times it's with shrugged shoulders because they say they can't afford not to, not even realizing that simply going into the store creates a sense of want, and more often than not, people buy stuff there that they weren't shopping for to begin with. Ever notice that they move locations of items around the store for seemingly no reason? It's the shoppers are forced to look at more merchandise. Want more? Spend more. How about taking responsibility for your own life and being happy with what you already have.

AjiDeGallina 9 years, 3 months ago

I wonder how much of their salary our tax dollars will go to pay with WalMarts under-payments, part-time and without benefits?Many of the larger WalMarts actually have social service workers in their HR departments that help their employees apply for federal benefits.I do not want to support WalMart by providing tax breaks (increasing my tax burdon) and supplement their payment through public benefits.

ockhamsrazor 9 years, 3 months ago

Walmarts suck the life out of communities, gouge workers and dodge taxes that other businesses pay. There is a high cost to these low prices. Even people who never set foot in these stores will pay it. Think about this as the traffic piles up on the stoplight jungle that sixth street is becoming.

angel4dennis 9 years, 3 months ago

ok, this strategy has gone too far. Does anyone else see the photos as offensive? If I go apply for a job at Walmart, why would I need to "pose" for a picture? How does that effect my work skills and job performance? Unless you are looking to hire me for my "looks" or marketability to make the public want to come see me working, this is a bogus move on society. You are trying to exploit people that are needing jobs! Shame on Walmart for this kind of "interview" process! To all the ladies and gentleman that applied there and your pics are plastered on this site, I hope you get the job based on your skills as you have been exploited. So if there was an obese person that applied, a short person, or a person with a disability, would you higher them if their pictures didn't fit your criteria?

alm77 9 years, 3 months ago

Do we get to vote? Bethany's interview was cute.

labmonkey 9 years, 3 months ago

I wonder how many American manufacturing jobs have been lost for every job Wal-Mart creates. It has to be in the double or triple digits.

sourpuss 9 years, 3 months ago

At least in Lawrence, there IS a choice where to shop, even if people don't choose to take it. In some smaller towns, Wal-mart is basically the only option. Unfortunately, no one can really compete with their economy of scale, so small-town America is stuck with them. Of course, more and more people are moving to larger cities... to get away from Wal-marts and get near public transport and jobs? Perhaps.

introversion 9 years, 3 months ago

Unfortunately, Wal Mart has joined the echelons in many people's minds as an entity that's too big to act against, and so they submit. They figure, "They make so much money, what difference will it make if I shop there anyway." but that's probably the mentality of the vast majority of the shoppers there. It's really just a kick in the teeth to pump a false sense of hopefulness into all these people that Wal Mart is somehow gonna come through and save the day in these hard times... Oh the stories I could tell...

Ralph Reed 9 years, 3 months ago

You know,I don't like to shop at Walmart for two reasons. First, I don't like their business practices. Second, I don't do crowds well at all. I go to Walmart and I want to get in and get out, anything more and I start to wig out.Anyway...I'm fortunate to be employed, as is my wife. I just hope that those who denegrate the job seekers are employed themselves. I've learned, over many years, that you must make sacrifices if you want to provide for your family, some of those are the place you work. You may be good at what you do, and you may hate it, but it pays the bills. In today's economy you can't stand on your personal principles --- you must provide for those who depend on you.I wouldn't like the idea, but if the only job available were a Walmart and I needed it, I would apply.To the new Walmart manager. Welcome to Lawrence, KS. I hope you will find us interesting amd will participate in the community. I wish you God speed and all the best.

labmonkey 9 years, 3 months ago

Barry-You can look at my comment history and see that I am not a liberal. I am not degrading the job-seekers. I wish them well....I just pose the question though....for every person Wal-Mart employs, how many American manufacturing jobs have been lost? This paper acts like Wal-Mart is a hero because of these jobs when in fact Wal-Mart is a major, major factor for many jobs lost in this country.

John Yocum 9 years, 3 months ago

notwhatyouthink (Anonymous) says… "Yea and oh by the way you want health insurance. That will cost you half of your salary! No we don't pay any portion of that."Your crack me up. Where'd you get that info? As I mentioned in a previous article blog, my wife's insurance for our family is less than HALF of what my state job-provided insurance would cost, never costing her more than 5% of her TAKE HOME salary. Also, Wal-Mart PAYS for about 2/3 of her insurance. Wal-Mart employees have many different plans to choose from at varying rates. While our rates for our family never ate up half my wife's salary like you suggested it would, we chose to go with an even cheaper one this year as our family hardly ever gets sick and we don't use the emergency room like a doctor's office. And speaking of anit-Wal-Mart web sites, my wife joined a blog on one once to help inform the follks about the truth. Guess what? As soon as they realized she was contradicting their lies, she got shut out. So, find someone else to start bashing.

Marc Mondi 9 years, 3 months ago

What the heck is this photo gallery on this page??? The one with all the posing shots of potential Wal-Mart employees? Does anyone else think that is kind of weird?

Christine Pennewell Davis 9 years, 3 months ago

i think it is strange that people shop at target, german owned treats employees like crap and has the same cheap stuff as walmart and just charges more for it. Oh yeah and does not allow toys for tots.

lounger 9 years, 3 months ago

Sad, Sad, Sad! Wal Mart is a frightening place to be, shop, work. Low salary, no health care and Ive even heard a they take out a life policy on you when your hired ( a condition of employment). Next they will require you to call them master. Im telling you nothing will change unless peeps stop shopping here. Shop local and Dont support this horrible company....

Chris Ogle 9 years, 3 months ago

A job is not all that bad. In fact, it feels pretty good. No, working at Walmart doesn't pay as much as I would like, but it's better than no job at all.

And by the way, I am still looking for a better job, while working this one. .

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 3 months ago

Wal-Mart-- the 21st century version of the "company store."

countrygirl 9 years, 3 months ago

Isn't underemployed better than unemployed? Sometimes you take a job just so you have a paycheck coming in and keep looking for something better.

disgustedagain 9 years, 3 months ago

The sad thing is that so many people are so desperate for work in this town that they are flocking to apply there. I've actually been trying to force myself to go apply there because a job is a job. I dislike Walmart as much as the next person (and VERY annoyed to have a blockbuster and Walmart to boot moving into my neighborhood), but the fact is salaries/benefits are substandard here because of student surplus. Lots of places that are not Walmart pay badly and have no benefits because they can get plenty of KU students to apply. Most of the job options in Lawrence are lousy. (Target doesn't seem to treat their employees very well either, judging by the sourness of their employees' customer service. But I still prefer to spend my money there because they don't have quite the atrocious reputation of Walmart.)

I don't blame people who shop there by necessity (although Checkers is much the better option) because they have very little money to stretch out through the paycheck. But I do hate people who crow about bargains when they could afford to support local shops--usually the same people who claim to be not "elitist" and feel virtuous for their false thrift.

flux 9 years, 3 months ago

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus comment # 11,553

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 3 months ago

Flux, I'm truly flattered by your obsession.

Now if you could just do something about those nervous ticks.

d_prowess 9 years, 3 months ago

I don't mean this as a joke: Jonathan Kealing, please take down the pictures of the woman with her fly open!! I think it is just in bad taste to keep it up and I think the LJW is better than that.

merritr 9 years, 3 months ago

Conservatives consider it a "national security issue" that we depend on foreign countries for oil, which means we should increase drilling on our own soil. So, is it not a similar national security issue that we depend on other countries to make every single product we use in society today, from clothes to computers to furniture, and pretty soon our vehicles?

The ONLY reason we still grow our food here is because of government regulations that make it financially prohibitive to do it outside of our country (it is not because we are the best at it - which we are - see the computer industry, of which Americans are the pioneers). So if the big CEOs of the agribusiness industry can't grow our food in a 3rd world country to save money, they'll bring the 3rd world here to do it on our soil (see Mexican population of Liberal, Kansas). Don't be surprised to see Wal-Mart enter the agribusiness industry in the next decade, by the way. It is very important that we all pay the same price for a Big Mac as we did in 1988.

And is Wal-Mart even an American company? If I buy fish from Japan, and that is all I sell, am I running an "American" company?

CHANDLER007 9 years, 3 months ago

For everyone on here who's bashing WalMart, I'd like to know why. Have you worked there before or are you just regurgitating crap that you've heard and have no idea if it's fact or fiction? WalMart has been a saving grace for my mother who had her 1st heart attack in 2002. She was self employed and couldn't afford health insurance, so you can imagine what her bill was after 2 weeks in the ICU. She now works at WalMart and has great health coverage at an affordable price. She is treated very well, has wonderful benefits, and is happy. I say, unless you've worked there youself and have a valid complaint about how you were treated, then stop trashing it!

labmonkey 9 years, 3 months ago


Read "The Wal-Mart Effect" by Charles Fishman.

For once, I will say good comment to Bozo for your 8:26 post.

Richard Heckler 9 years, 3 months ago

Plenty of produce and other items on Wal-Mart shelves will be from China. Beware of their organics. Wal-Mart was busted not so long ago for mislabeling produce as organic when in fact it was not.

Wal-Mart has gone from corporate america to corporate chinese while still maintaining corporate america tax breaks.

Weavers,Ernst Hardware and Cottins Hardware are certainly competitive.

A few years ago after serious price comparisons it was discovered that prices differences were not significant. Wal-Mart vs Target revealed prices with a nickle difference or I would see prices like $6.97 vs $6.99 on same merchandise = 2 cent difference.

Weavers houseware department is spot on price wise no question about it. Service and selection is very good and they offer online it at home. Several downtown stores offer online shopping... again do it at home.

Checkers is a well run business and competitively priced. Dillons/Krogers has been in the business so long( 60 years or more) and are so big that prices for groceries cannot reflect huge savings. Hy Vee stores much the same.

"Always Low Price ' I discovered may be only a few pennies difference and "Always Low Price" was NOT always true. Consumers have become victims of advertising meaning you cannot always believe what you hear or what you read. This is known as manipulation by the constant barrage of redundant ads.

We quit shopping Wal-Mart a few years back. Weavers,Kiefs,Cottins,Ernst,Brown's Shoes, The Merc and Dillons,Checkers etc etc keep this household going.

Not only that if one does not like sprawl growth why support those developers by shopping Wal-Mart?

beawolf 9 years, 3 months ago

"please. keep buying from wal-mart millions of Chinese are depending on you.".....

The ignorance on these boards is overwhelming. Chinese imports are more important to the US than its exports. In the near future that margin could be 4 or even 5 to 1 (in dollars). So, let's stop buying from China and see what happens. First, consumers will spend more for comparable products and thus have less disposable income. Second, China will counter and buy less from the US, this of course will result in fewer jobs, lower business productivity, a decrease in the GNP and strain our economy even further.

In the expanding world of global economics, we will depend more on the millions of Chinese than they will on us.

That said, China has been accused of manipulating it's currency which will affect our economy iin much greater ways than anything Wal-Mart and other US muiti-nationals could ever do.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 3 months ago

"First, consumers will spend more for comparable products and thus have less disposable income."

So where does that money go? Does it just disappear into thin air? Or do other Americans receive it, and then spend it, likely on goods and services that eventually mean the money gets back to the original purchaser of those products?

beawolf 9 years, 3 months ago

"Does it just disappear into thin air? Or do other Americans receive it, and then spend it, likely on goods and services that eventually mean the money gets back to the original purchaser of those products?" ... You bring up a good point, but unless we were in complete isolation (no other external influences on our economy) this is incorrect. The cost of production and reliance of exports (i.e fuel for transport) would continually erode that model until all you were left with is less money (disposable income) in your pocket.

sourpuss 9 years, 3 months ago

It's true. Rena Ralston's fly is down. That is unfortunate.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 3 months ago

So, beawolf, I guess you've resigned yourself to reliance on Chinese labor, at less than a dollar an hour, meaning a permanent trade deficit, and our borrowing back of that money from the Chinese, and the major stockholders of WalMart, to pay off our ever-burgeoning national debt. All so we can have disposable consumer items, most of which we could easily live without.

Personally, I'd rather see Americans making what Americans really need, and the Chinese making what the Chinese really need, with a moderate amount of trade between us in areas where it actually makes a bit of sense. OK somebody can remind me that that's just a silly, romantic notion that doesn't feed the race to the bottom that WalMart so depends on.

labmonkey 9 years, 3 months ago

Holy Crap....Bozo is making sense today. Bozo- Buy a Snapper mower. They told Wal-Mart where they could go.


It isn't even how they treat employees that makes me hate Wal-Mart (many are part-time, second income jobs) is their pricing and how they force suppliers to come down to the point they can no longer make their goods in the United States. It's the fact that you can rarely find American made goods at Wal-Mart...something they used to pride themselves on when Sam Walton was alive. If you can afford to buy a more expensive item that is American made instead of something made in is unconscienable to buy the Chinese made item. Problem is that too many Americans don't look at the label.

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