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story.lead_photo.caption FILE- This Nov. 9, 2018, file photo shows a Walmart Supercenter in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip, File)

Walmart Inc. is expanding a program that helps people who've had to put their careers on hold get back into the workforce. It's now being made available to more people and at more locations, a company executive said.

Walmart Labs, the Bentonville retailer's tech division, created the return-to-work program last fall in partnership with Path Forward, a nonprofit that helps men and women restart their careers after taking time off to raise children, care for a family member or relocate for their spouse's career.

The program, offered in Walmart Labs' Sunnyvale and San Bruno, Calif., offices, created training and career opportunities for people with at least five years of professional experience who took a career pause of at least two years. Participants get four months of professional development workshops and networking opportunities.

Bobbie Grafeld, Walmart Labs' vice president of people, said in a news release this week that the program is being expanded to other Walmart Labs locations including Bentonville; Carlsbad, Calif.; and Reston, Va. The company is accepting up to 100 candidates across all locations -- up from about 30 in last year's cohort.

Grafeld said that about three-fourths of the 2018 group accepted full-time jobs at Walmart after completing the program.

"We're hopeful that this year we will have a similar success rate and bring even more amazing, full-time, diverse technical talent to Walmart Labs," she said.

This year's "returnships" will start in August, with opportunities mainly in data science and analytics, product management and software engineering. More information is available at

Business on 05/04/2019

Print Headline: Walmart grows return-to-work project

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