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Victoria's Secret Wants to Hire Fewer Retail Employees and Pay Them More

Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/Getty Images

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Victoria's Secret's parent company is thinking about a radical shift in how it staffs its stores, BuzzFeed reports. L Brands CEO Les Wexner explained the new "store selling initiative" at the company's annual investor meeting last week, saying: "My fundamental belief is that fewer, better people will do better, and that’s in our customer’s interest."

The plan includes a big hourly boost in pay. "We think paying people $20 an hour would probably attract better people than if we’re paying $8.50. Now we’re trying to prove that and we’re getting some traction, really some traction," Wexner said.

Victoria's Secret recently eliminated its use of on call scheduling for its employees. Now the brand seems to be questioning how effective employing an army of part-time sale associates really is. "How well can they really know your business, how invested are they in us, are we in them, if they’re only working a few hours per week and their turnover rate is very high?" L Brands finance chief Stuart Burgdoerfer said at the meeting. "So we see the opportunity to have a more knowledgable, a more engaged or effective and productive associate when she’s typically working more hours per week."

Victoria's Secret thinks this new initiative could raise revenue and create a whole new pipeline for staffing and career development path for employees. "I’m imagining in a couple of years, virtually every sales associate is looking for a career in retailing and 10-20% will be store managers somewhere in the world in a year. They can literally go from $40,000 to $100,000 a year in compensation," Wexner said.