Help Meet the Demand for Holiday eCommerce Orders
By Greg Smith, EVP, Supply Chain, Walmart U.S.
November 17, 2020
The holidays are always a special time, and this year they are likely to take on
even more meaning when it comes to connecting with family and friends. This may
be the first time in a long time that you’ll be able to see your loved ones – or
this may be the first time in a long time you won’t be able to spend time with
family and friends. Whatever your plans this year, we want to make sure we’re
doing our part to help make the season special.
As we began our planning, we knew we needed to get creative to meet our
customers’ expectations and continue to help them ring in the holidays in a safe
way. Walmart already has an extensive supply chain network of distribution
centers servicing our stores. By leveraging new and existing technology, and
using some of our current real estate differently, we are increasing our
eCommerce fulfillment capabilities as we prepare for the holidays.
What we’re doing
are taking space in 42 of our current Regional Distribution Centers (RDCs) and
creating what we call “pop-up eCommerce Distribution Centers” (eDCs) to meet the
growing demand of eCommerce orders. Traditionally, RDCs ship pallets of goods to
our stores, which is very different than sending packages directly to customer
homes. Working closely with our Technology team, who developed new and enhanced
some of our existing supply chain systems, we’ve been able to increase our
fulfillment throughput. This means facilities that have traditionally only
supplied products to stores are now equipped to also fulfill online orders, just
in time for the holidays.
Why it matters
Standing up the eDCs enables us to move more product to customers quickly, using
the expertise of our supply chain and technology associates — without the delay
of building new facilities. The flexibility to pop-up an eDC anytime our supply
chain network experiences peak demand allows us to deliver for our customers
when they need us the most all the while consistently following the health and
safety measures we have had in place for months.
Whether our customers are shopping in stores or online for pickup or delivery,
we are committed to serving our customers safely and delivering a great holiday