Warehouses using startup-style amenities to attract workers: report

With national unemployment at its lowest rate since 1969, warehouses are struggling to fill positions — so they’re reportedly turning to amenities and other improvements to bring in workers.

E-commerce sites, in particular, are in need of warehouse workers as online shopping continues to grow, The Wall Street Journal reported.

One example is ASOS, according to the outlet. The clothing retailer designed a distribution center with skylights. Other amenities at the center include basketball courts, an outdoor area, a gym, a soccer field and a variety of discounted dining options.

The company even brought in a nail bar and barber shop temporarily, according to the outlet.

“We opted to differentiate ASOS in a way that would be consistent with the employee offer in other countries and meaningful to the staff we were looking to attract,” a spokeswoman told The Journal.

Other warehouses are developing buildings with more windows, artwork and special walking and biking trails around their industrial parks.

Those amenities — which are similar to those at tech startups in Silicon Valley — are a stark contrast to the warehouses of the past, with few windows and amenities limited to vending machines and folding chairs, The Journal reported.

However, the amenities may not be as impressive to some as improved conditions and better wages would be.

“Why would you waste your money on [amenities] when you can give [workers] health insurance for their whole life instead of a coffee shop or gym?” a union shop steward at a distribution center in New Jersey told The Journal.


However, warehouse owners say the amenities give them an advantage, without costing too much.

Fox Business’ Megan Henney contributed to this report.