Target extending pay, benefits for front-line team members

Target is extending the lifeline of its previously announced enhanced team member wages and benefits.

The $2 an hour increase will now be in effect until May 30 and extended access to free backup care for employees, including a 30-day paid leave for those who are 65 years old or older, pregnant or have underlying medical conditions, also will be available until the end of May.

“We have deep gratitude for the remarkable effort our team has put into supporting guests across the country,” said Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target. "We remain committed to prioritizing our efforts to provide for their well-being, so they can take care of themselves and their families during this unprecedented time.”

In order to enhance the safety of its stores and distribution centers, the Minneapolis-based retailer also will supply face masks and gloves to employees, implement rigorous cleaning and social distancing practices, and provide guidance on healthy hygiene habits as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Following in the footsteps of other retailers, Target also has begun to monitor store occupancy, metering traffic and enhancing space per person to reduce congestion.

“Our strategy was built to be durable and sustainable in any environment, and its strength is driving our business in the face of marked shifts in shopping behaviors caused by COVID-19,” Cornell said. “Because of our strong business model, we are able to make considerable investments to support our team, put protections in place, and adjust to serve our guests who are being advised to shelter in place and avoid stores. As a result, we are seeing record setting digital growth, strong demand for our same-day fulfillment services, and broad market-share gains across each of our core categories. While this crisis will certainly put near-term pressure on our profitability, that pressure is far outweighed by doing right by our team and our guests. We're confident the actions we're taking today will drive growth and greater guest affinity over the long-term.”

When it comes to its finances, the retailer’s sales have grown more than 7%, which reflects a slight decline in stores, but it also has seen a 100% growth across its digital channels, the company said.

“Over the last several years, we have strengthened Target's operational and financial model, investing in our unique, multi-category merchandise assortment, positioning our stores to fulfill every type of shopping, and supporting and developing our team,” Michael Fiddelke, executive vice president and CFO, said. “Throughout this crisis, the response of our business, and especially our team, are providing vivid evidence of the value of this model.”