Costco has more than 210,000 employees worldwide.
We understand that the key to our continuing success and growth is our employees. Consequently, everywhere we do business, we provide competitive wages and benefits. An important reason for the success of Costco’s business model is the attraction and retention of great employees. We compensate our employees well because this helps us in the long run by minimizing turnover and maximizing employee productivity, commitment and loyalty.
In the U.S., our employees have, on average, almost nine years of service with the company. Over 60 percent of our U.S. employees have five or more years with Costco, and over one-third have more than 10 years. Costco also has long-tenured workforces in the other locations where we do business, particularly in more mature markets in Canada, the UK, Mexico, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. We feel that the experience level and loyalty of our employees is a significant advantage in our business operations.
A related advantage comes from our philosophy and practice of promoting from within our employee ranks. We are very proud of the fact that over 70 percent of our warehouse managers began their Costco careers in hourly positions. In addition, a majority of our corporate and regional office employees started in our warehouses, depots and Business Centers.
We aim to have a diverse workforce that is representative of the communities where we do business, and to foster an inclusive environment.
A word that comes up frequently when we talk about the uniqueness of Costco is our “culture.” Costco’s employees know that an important factor in our past and future success is our ongoing commitment to basic principles such as simplicity, value, fairness, member service and always striving to do what is right. We also encourage an atmosphere of openness and support with our Open Door Policy, which allows any employee to discuss an issue with any level of management. Our employees play a significant role in teaching and reinforcing Costco’s unique culture. We have a global confidential ethics hotline to help our employees assure we continue to do the right thing at www.costco.ethicspoint.com. As we move forward, it is imperative that we continue to perpetuate this culture throughout the company, wherever we do business.