Wal-Mart is bringing back its store greeters this summer after eliminating the position from its 5,000-plus U.S. stores four years ago, NBC News reported.
The Arkansas-based retail giant said a pilot program that returned its goodwill ambassadors to the front door earned positive customer feedback. The company announced this week it will be stationing 9,000 people at its store entrances.
The company said two-thirds of the new positions will be the traditional greeters — often senior citizens. The remainder will be "customer hosts," specially trained younger employees, who will be responsible for checking receipts, processing returns, handling security, and protecting against theft.
Wal-Mart's founder Sam Walton implemented "people greeters" in the 1980s after a store associate suggested a familiar face at the entrance would give shoppers the impression of a friendly, neighborhood business.