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03/28/2022

Wisconsin Walmart Distribution Center to Become High-Tech Facility

Multimillion-dollar investment will create STEM jobs for local workforce
Bridget Goldschmidt
Managing Editor
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Walmart’s multi-million-dollar investment in technology will enhance the associate and customer experience in stores.

Walmart is making a multimillion-dollar investment in high-tech automation at its regional distribution center (RDC) in Menomonie, Wis. The investment is part of a broader initiative revealed earlier this year to renovate 25 of the company’s 42 regional distribution centers with automated technology to continue modernizing its supply chain network by increasing the speed, efficiency and safety with which products are distributed. The first phase of the renovation will wrap up by the end of the year.  

“Walmart’s Menomonie distribution center has been a pillar in our community for the last 29 years, and we’re honored to transform our building into an industry leading, high-tech distribution center,” noted Marcea Weiss, general manager at RDC #6025, on the occasion of a March 25 groundbreaking ceremony for the project. “This isn’t just an investment in our facility, but also in our associates, our community and our future. I couldn’t be prouder to be at the forefront of Walmart’s supply chain transformation.” 

RDCs are a strategic part of Walmart’s larger supply chain network, keeping its thousands of stores and clubs stocked with merchandise such as food items, home goods and tech gadgets. The revolutionary technology employs a combination of artificial-intelligence-powered software systems, robotics and automation to sort, store, retrieve and pack merchandise onto pallets, which are then shipped to stores, ensuring that products arrive on shelves even faster.

Altogether, the technology transforms existing RDCs into high-density, automated facilities that provide faster product intake, higher inventory accuracy and twice the building capacity. It saves store associates time by creating store- and aisle-ready pallets, which take the guesswork out of unloading trucks and give them more time to serve customers. The technology also works to increase associate safety while turning manual jobs into ones incorporating new skills in robotics and technology that are more fulfilling and lead to longer-term employment, such as cell operator and machine technician.  

“Our regional distribution center in Menomonie is a high-volume facility that works hard to ensure stores in the surrounding areas are stocked with the items customers need,” said David Guggina, SVP of innovation and automation, Walmart U.S. “Adding game-changing robotics, automation and AI-powered software systems to this facility will revolutionize an already impressive operation, fundamentally changing the way we distribute products to stores, and we’re just getting started.” 

Walmart operates three distribution centers and 99 retail stores and employs 33,000 associates in the state of Wisconsin. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company operates approximately 10,500 stores under 48 banners in 24 countries, and e-commerce websites, employing 2.2 million-plus associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America

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