Walmart, the United States’ largest employer, announced this week it will open two high-tech supply chain facilities in Lancaster, just south of Dallas. The new centers will add 1,000 full-time positions to the metro, 40 percent of which will be tech-related jobs.
One facility, set to open in 2023, will act as an automated fulfillment center for online orders and have a footprint of 1.5 million square feet. The second 730,000-square-foot facility will be an automated grocery distribution center and is set to open in 2024.
“These high-tech facilities will include game-changing innovations that are radically disrupting the supply chain, getting products onto store shelves and items shipped to our customers even faster, while saving time for our associates,” Joe Metzger, executive VP of supply chain operations at Walmart, said in a statement.
In recent years, Walmart has been investing more heavily in tech. The company recently invested in drones and autonomous vehicles to bolster its last-mile delivery facilities. And earlier this year, Walmart announced it was partnering with Symbotic, a Massachusetts-based robotics company, to populate distribution centers with automation robotics.
Although specific tech roles at these new facilities have not been announced, a release said some jobs will require “STEM skills to support technical positions.”
“We are making a significant investment in this region because of the inclusive, diverse and qualified pipeline of local talent that reflect Walmart’s values,” Karissa Sprague, Walmart’s SVP of supply chain human resources, said in a statement. “Our investment in technologies and high-tech facilities today pave the way for jobs of the future that are supported by automation and will allow opportunities for an upskilled workforce.”
Walmart isn’t the only big name investing in the Dallas-Fort Worth tech scene. Last month, beverage giant PepsiCo announced the opening of a tech hub in the DFW metro. Rather than acting as a distribution center, PepsiCo’s digital hub will develop global solutions with a focus on North American-based businesses.