Macy’s to Lay Off 13% of Corporate Staff, Close 5 Stores as Retail Looks to Tech

January 19, 2024 | by


Macy’s, the department-store chain, is set to lay off approximately 13% of its corporate staff and close five stores as it looks to incorporate more technology into its retail operations. The decision comes as Macy’s aims to adapt to the everchanging consumer landscape and marketplace. The company plans to reduce costs, streamline operations, and improve the overall shopping experience for its customers. These job cuts are part of a larger effort by retailers to leverage technology in response to changing consumer demands and the impact of the pandemic. Macy’s is also facing a potential takeover bid and a leadership transition, further adding to the uncertain landscape it currently faces.

Macy’s Corporate Layoffs and Store Closures

Macy’s to Lay Off 13% of Corporate Staff, Close 5 Stores as Retail Looks to Tech

Macy’s to Cut 13% of Corporate Staff

As part of its efforts to meet the changing needs of consumers and streamline operations, Macy’s Inc. has announced plans to cut 13% of its corporate staff. This reduction in workforce, amounting to approximately 2,350 jobs, is aimed at improving efficiency and reducing costs.

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Closure of Five Macy’s Stores

In addition to the layoffs, Macy’s also plans to close five of its stores. These closures are a strategic decision aimed at repositioning the company’s store portfolio and focusing on locations that are more aligned with consumer demand.

Reasons for Layoffs and Closures

Meeting the Changing Needs of Consumers and Marketplace

The retail industry has undergone significant changes in recent years, driven by shifts in consumer behavior and the rise of e-commerce. Macy’s is making these difficult decisions to ensure that it can adapt and meet the evolving needs of its customers and the marketplace.

Cost Reduction and Streamlining Operations

By reducing its corporate staff and closing certain stores, Macy’s aims to streamline its operations and reduce costs. This move will allow the company to improve its overall efficiency and allocate resources more effectively.

Directing Resources Towards Customer Experience

To remain competitive in the retail industry, Macy’s is shifting its focus towards enhancing the customer experience. By reallocating resources from corporate functions and underperforming stores, the company can invest in areas that directly impact consumers, such as visual display management and digital functions.

Impact of Inflation on Retail Industry

The ongoing inflationary pressures in the retail industry have also influenced Macy’s decision to make these changes. Higher prices for groceries and other essentials have constrained consumer spending on discretionary items, leading to challenges for retailers. Macy’s aims to navigate this landscape by evaluating its store portfolio and implementing a more automated supply chain.

Technology in Retail

Shift Towards Technology in Retail

The retail industry has witnessed a significant shift towards technology in recent years, driven by the rise of e-commerce and changing consumer preferences. Macy’s recognizes the importance of embracing technology to stay relevant and meet customer expectations.

Role of Online Shopping and Digital Advertising

Online shopping and digital advertising have become integral parts of the retail landscape. Macy’s, like many other retailers, is leveraging these technologies to reach consumers and enhance their shopping experience. By investing in digital functions, the company aims to provide a seamless online shopping experience for its customers.

Store Closures in Response to Inflation

As inflation has impacted consumer demand for discretionary goods, retailers have had to make strategic decisions, including store closures. Macy’s closure of five stores is a reflection of the changing retail environment and the need to align its store portfolio with consumer preferences and market conditions.

Automation and Improved Supply Chain

Automation and improved supply chain management have become essential for retailers to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Macy’s plans to develop a more automated supply chain, allowing for better inventory management and faster fulfillment of customer orders. By leveraging technology in its operations, Macy’s can optimize its supply chain and enhance the overall customer experience.

Macy’s Takeover Bid and Leadership Changes

Potential $6 Billion Takeover Bid by Investor Group

Macy’s is currently facing a potential $6 billion takeover bid by an investor group. This bid indicates the interest of investors in the long-term prospects of the company and its potential for growth. The outcome of this bid could potentially impact the future direction of Macy’s.

Upcoming Change in CEO Position

In addition to the potential takeover bid, Macy’s will also experience a change in its CEO position. Tony Spring, the current company president, is set to succeed Jeff Gennette as chief executive next month. This leadership change is expected to bring fresh perspectives and strategies to drive the company forward.

Challenges in the Retail Industry

Uneven Business Landscape for Retailers

The retail industry operates in a highly competitive and dynamic environment. Retailers face challenges such as changing consumer preferences, increasing competition from e-commerce giants, and evolving market conditions. Macy’s, like other retailers, must navigate these challenges to stay relevant and successful.

Price Pressure and Discount Strategies

Price pressure and the need for discount strategies have become prevalent in the retail industry. As consumers seek the best deals and discounts, retailers must carefully manage their pricing strategies to maintain profitability. Macy’s, in response to price pressure, plans to implement automated supply chain systems to improve efficiency and cost-effectiveness.


Macy’s Plans for Automated Supply Chain

Macy’s recognizes the importance of an automated supply chain to overcome various challenges in the retail industry. By implementing automated systems for inventory management, order fulfillment, and logistics, Macy’s aims to streamline its operations, reduce costs, and improve overall efficiency.

Macy’s Store Portfolio and Locations

Repositioning Store Portfolio

To align with changing consumer preferences and market conditions, Macy’s is repositioning its store portfolio. This strategic decision involves evaluating the performance of each store and closing those that are underperforming or in locations that no longer meet customer demand.

On-Mall and Off-Mall Locations

Macy’s is evaluating the right mix of on-mall and off-mall locations. As consumer behavior evolves and preferences shift, the company seeks to optimize its presence in both types of locations to cater to a diverse customer base efficiently.

Closure of Five Stores in the Coming Year

As part of the repositioning strategy, Macy’s has announced the closure of five of its stores in the coming year. These closures are a result of careful evaluation and a proactive approach to managing the company’s store portfolio.

Similar Actions by Other Retailers

Nike’s Cost-Cutting Measures

Retailers across the industry are taking cost-cutting measures to adapt to the changing retail landscape. For example, Nike recently announced plans to cut up to $2 billion in costs over the next three years. Like Macy’s, Nike is focusing on streamlining operations, reducing management layers, and improving supply chain efficiency.

CVS Pharmacy Closures in Target Stores

In response to changes in consumer behavior and market conditions, CVS announced the closure of some pharmacies within Target stores. This decision reflects the need to realign their retail footprint and optimize their operations.

Industry Speculation on Retail Struggles

Suspicions of Hidden Financial Struggles

In the retail industry, there have been suspicions among observers regarding retailers’ use of excuses like organized theft to hide deeper financial struggles. Retailers facing financial challenges and other issues may resort to various strategies to manage their operations.

Organized Theft and Retail Safety Concerns

Retailers, including Macy’s, have faced challenges related to organized theft and retail safety concerns. These issues can impact profitability and the overall shopping experience for customers. Retailers must address these challenges proactively to ensure a safe and secure shopping environment.

Macy’s Stock Performance

After-Hours Trading Performance

Following the announcement of layoffs and store closures, Macy’s stock performance in after-hours trading saw a slight increase of 0.2%. This reflects the market’s reaction to the company’s strategic decisions and the perception of their potential impact on Macy’s future performance.

MarketWatch Picks

MarketWatch, a leading financial news and market analysis platform, has highlighted Macy’s as a stock to watch. This recognition indicates the significance of Macy’s actions in response to the changing retail landscape and the potential opportunities it presents.

Industry Outlook and Future Trends

The Future of Retail

The retail industry continues to evolve and adapt to changing consumer preferences and technological advancements. Retailers like Macy’s must embrace technology, enhance the customer experience, and adopt innovative strategies to remain competitive in the future.

Impact of Technology on Retail Operations

Technology plays a crucial role in shaping the future of retail operations. Retailers are leveraging technologies such as automation, artificial intelligence, and data analytics to improve efficiency, personalize customer experiences, and optimize supply chain management.

Challenges and Opportunities for Retailers

The retail industry presents both challenges and opportunities for retailers. While changing consumer behavior and market conditions pose challenges, advancements in technology and evolving customer expectations also create opportunities for growth and innovation. Retailers like Macy’s must navigate these dynamics to thrive in a competitive landscape.

In conclusion, Macy’s corporate layoffs and store closures are strategic decisions aimed at meeting the changing needs of consumers, reducing costs, and improving the overall customer experience. These actions reflect the challenges and opportunities present in the retail industry, driven by technology advancements, inflationary pressures, and evolving consumer preferences. Macy’s, along with other retailers, must adapt and embrace innovative strategies to stay competitive and succeed in the future.


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