September 10, 2019 / 12:04 PM / 10 months ago

Target plans to hire 130,000 employees for busy holiday shopping season

Sept 10 (Reuters) - Retailer Target Corp said on Tuesday it was planning to hire 130,000 store employees for the holiday season, 10,000 more than last year, as it readies for a crucial shopping period when in-store and online orders surge.

The holiday season, which includes Black Friday, Christmas and New Year shopping, marks the busiest time for retailers and records the most sales during the year.

"It's critical we build the right team across our stores and supply chain to deliver an exceptional holiday experience for our guests during the busiest time of the year," Chief Human Resources Officer Melissa Kremer said.

The seasonal hiring would include about 125,000 employees in stores and 8,000 at its distribution and fulfillment centers in the United States.

Big-box retailers have been investing more on their websites and mobile apps as consumers prefer to shop online and have it delivered to their doorstep or pick up in stores, rather than wait in long lines at billing counters.

Target is the one of the first retailers to layout its hiring plans for the holidays. The 8% rise in holiday hiring is much lower than last year's 20% increase.

United Parcel Service Inc, the world's biggest parcel delivery firm, said on Monday it was planning to hire 100,000 holiday workers, the same number as last year, hinting at a softening in the U.S. consumer economy.

Retail employment contracted for a seventh straight month in August to hit the lowest level since January 2016. Department store jobs, which have been hard hit by online competition, sunk to the lowest point since the federal government started tracking the data in 1990.

Target said it would pay workers $13 for an hour, a wage that it has been paying employees since June. The company will also invest $2 million in an employee rewards program for the holidays. (Reporting by Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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