The tight labor market is prompting a bit of a makeover at warehouses, reports The Wall Street Journal. Companies including outdoor goods retailer REI and drug distributor McKesson are adding features such as natural light and fitness centers, as they try to soften the hard industrial edges around their buildings in hopes of attracting and retaining workers.
The upgrades followed rapid expansion in the distribution world that has seen warehousing employment double in the past six years and wages increase as companies compete for workers. The recruiting has grown harder amid reports about tough working conditions in warehouses, particularly as booming e-commerce demand during the pandemic has put a premium on speed and efficiency.
The newest warehouses are still built to fit their industrial jobs, with many of the amenities added around the edges. But developers say the environment for workers is a growing concern in design.
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