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Verizon is raising its hourly wage to $20 an hour

April 18, 2022, 4:57 PM UTC
Verizon worker inside store
An employee works inside a Verizon store in San Francisco, California, on July 20, 2021.
David Paul Morris—Bloomberg/Getty Images

Verizon Communications Inc. is the latest wireless carrier to raise its minimum wage to $20 an hour, reflecting the tighter job market and a push by labor organizers to unionize retail and customer service employees.

New staffers answering customer calls and working in stores at Verizon will start at that rate, and existing employees who make less will get raises, according to a release Monday. 

“These changes are the direct result of employee feedback and will help us remain an attractive employer in this competitive environment,” Krista Bourne, chief operating officer for Verizon Consumer Group, said in the release. 

Late last year, mobile phone competitor T-Mobile US Inc. bumped up its starting pay to $20 an hour from $15 in response to a challenging recruiting environment during the pandemic. AT&T Inc. hasn’t made any widespread wage increases but may do so now, said John Byrne, an analyst with GlobalData. 

“The Verizon announcement plus T-Mobile having done so a few months ago makes it inevitable that AT&T will follow suit,” Byrne said.

AT&T declined to comment on starting wages, but says its customer service employees make an average of $26 an hour in total pay.

The pressure of having fewer job candidates has shifted more of the power to prospective employees and fueled more unionizing efforts at companies from Amazon.com Inc. to Starbucks Corp. 

“I’m sure that’s in the back of the minds of the telcos,” Byrne said.

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