More News:

January 20, 2016

Wawa and Sheetz to raise wages for convenience store employees

Competition is driving up hourly pay rates for employees at Delco-based chain

Business Wawa
Wawa Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Wawa, located at 912 Walnut St.

Sheetz and Wawa are competing for more than just customers. The two Pennsylvania-based convenience stores both have increased wages to compete for workers as well, reports the Morning Call.

Both will increase starting wages to $10 per hour for entry-level workers. Sheetz, based in Altoona, will spend $15 million on raising workers' pay, without cutting back hours for full-time employees.

Sheetz said that it will raise starting wages to $10 per hour for sales associates (those who work the cash register, clean up the store, prepare food, etc.), $13 for shift supervisors and $16 for assistant managers.

Wawa – headquartered in Chester Heights, Delaware County – will pay, respectively, $10, $13 and $17 for those same positions, in addition to a bonus program.

The previous starting salary for a sales associate was $9.25, according to Wawa's website.

The convenience stores are following in the path of large retailers like Walmart and McDonald's who have beefed up paychecks in order to attract more workers. However, noted Bloomberg, Walmart later cut some workers' hours to make up for the increased expense.

A strengthening economy, lower unemployment rate and more-educated workforce are among the forces that pressure retailers to offer more competitive wages.

"At a wage of $10 you can hire a pretty good college student," Paul Harrington, a professor of labor economics at Drexel University, told the paper.

When you pay $43,000 per year for a Drexel education, at the very least, you want a decent starting salary at Wawa.

Read the full story here.