While the coronavirus outbreak has caused a number of companies to amp up hiring, many more are feeling the financial strain of nationwide social distancing and store closures.
Retail workers, which make up 9.8% of the total workforce in the U.S., are experiencing layoffs and furloughs (unpaid periods of not working) at a number of companies.
The following businesses — including Kohl’s, Macy’s, Hobby Lobby, Victoria’s Secret and JCPenney — have already announced labor cuts:
Dick’s Sporting Goods is furloughing a “significant number” of employees starting April 12.
Dick’s Sporting Goods just announced plans to furlough a “significant number” of employees at its retail stores, distribution centers, and corporate headquarters beginning April 12. Dick’s promised to continue providing benefits to its furloughed employees.
Sephora laid off over 3,000 employees.
It was announced on March 31 that Sephora, who had employed 13,000 in its U.S. stores, laid off 3,754 seasonal and part-time employees. The layoffs were made via conference call and are said to have affected those who had only been with the company for a short period of time and those who had worked limited hours. Support services along with severance packages were made available to terminated employees.
Macy’s is furloughing most of its 130,000 workers.
All Macy’s stores have been closed since March 18, but once business resumes, the tens of thousands of employees on unpaid leave will be brought back in waves. In the meantime, any workers with health benefits would continue to receive coverage through May.
JCPenney is furloughing most of its 85,000-person workforce.
On Tuesday, March 31, JCPenney announced that it would furlough most of its 85,000 employees without pay. Hourly employees would stop working as of April 2, and salaried workers would begin their furloughs April 5. The company would continue to provide full health benefits for employees enrolled in the program, and plans to cover 100% of employee-paid premiums during the furlough period.
Kohl’s is also furloughing about 85,000 employees.
About 70% of the 122,000 Kohl’s employees at stores and distribution centers are being furloughed for an indefinite amount of time. The store will continue to ship and have curbside pickup from stores with reduced staff.
Gap Inc. is furloughing 80,000 of its store workers until further notice.
Gap Inc. — which owns Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic and Athleta — announced it would be furloughing most of its 130,000 workers nationwide, at the same time it announced stores would stay closed indefinitely.
Claire’s is furloughing the majority of its 18,000 employees.
Most Claire’s store-based employees have been placed on unpaid temporary leave, as well as 250 corporate office employees. The company plans to bring workers back when stores reopen. Senior leadership will take pay cuts, and Claire’s is paying healthcare premiums for up to 8 weeks.
Build-A-Bear Workshop is furloughing more than 90% of its workforce.
Employees at the more than 400 Build-A-Bear Workshops internationally will likely face unpaid leave, but will continue to receive benefits as of March 29. Anybody still working will experience pay cuts, including a 20% cut to executive salaries.
Hobby Lobby is laying off part-time employees and making pay cuts.
As Hobby Lobby has been forced to close stores, the company has announced it’s laying off 1/3 of its part-timers, and cutting the salaries of its salaried workers 10%. Members of the Hobby Lobby creative department were notified of their permanent layoffs last week. Learn more about the Hobby Lobby layoffs.
Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works are furloughing the majority of their staff.
Starting April 5, L Brands — the parent company of Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works — will send most of its store employees home, unpaid. Anyone not supporting the companies’ online stores or unable able to work from home would be furloughed, too. L Brands’ executives will see a temporary 20% reduction in their salary. Furloughed employees will continue to get their healthcare benefits.
Neiman Marcus is furloughing most of its 14,000 employees for most of April.
Luxury retailer Neiman Marcus will furlough most of its 14,000 employees for a temporary, unpaid separation from April 5 – 30. Employees with healthcare coverage will continue to receive those benefits. Many employees still working are taking pay cuts, including the CEO. The company will revisit its employees’ statuses in late April.
La-Z-Boy is furloughing 70% of its global workforce.
The couch and recliner retailer is temporarily making about 6,800 international employees stay home without pay. Remaining employees are seeing their salaries cut by 25%. Senior employees get 50% pay cuts.
The Container Store has announced furloughs and pay cuts.
Out of the 90 total Container Store locations, 40 have been closed due to government mandates. The employees at those stores have been laid off — an estimated 900 or so employees. Some corporate staff members have been furloughed, and top executives are taking pay cuts. Health benefits will continue through April 30 to all employees.
Gordmans is furloughing all but 80 of its associates.
The department store will pay health benefits for furloughed employees, which include “virtually all” store associates at its 157 locations, as well as distribution center employees and field support roles. Executives will take pay cuts of at least 25%.
DSW is furloughing around 10,000 of its employees.
Designer Brands, the parent company of DSW, sent 80% of its nearly 13,000 employees home for unpaid leave as of March 29 — but will continue paying medical, prescription, and dental benefits. Executive officers are also getting a 20% salary cut.
Nordstrom is furloughing some of its corporate staff.
Starting April 5, Nordstrom will furlough a portion of its corporate employees for six weeks. Store employees are so far unaffected, and have been paid and given benefits since March 17. Pay benefits will extend until April 5, and benefits will last through April. The company’s owners will forgo their salary until September, and corporate executives will cut their salaries.
Pier 1 has furloughed many of its associates, including 65% of its home office employees.
Pier 1’s furloughs hit the company’s home offices the most, with 65% of its employees on unpaid leave as of March 24. A group of store and distribution workers will also be furloughed, and everyone still working will take a 20% pay cut. Senior leaders will see pay reductions of 30-50%.
Everlane laid off more than 200 employees and furloughed 68.
The mostly-online clothing seller made big surprise cuts to its workforce March 27. Laid-off employees will receive two weeks’ severance pay. The Everlane CEO will refuse a salary until further notice.
Sally Beauty is furloughing all store employees and some corporate staffers.
The majority of Sally Beauty’s 22,000 employees aren’t working right now, as all stores are closed and some corporate staffers have been furloughed. Furloughed employees in the U.S. and Canada will receive two weeks’ pay and get medical benefits through April 30. Senior leaders will reduce their pay by up to 50% during the COVID-19 crisis.