Verizon Raises Minimum Wage for Retail, Customer Service Staff to $20 Per Hour

The increase will automatically apply to both new and existing retail, sales and customer service employees.

Eli Blumenthal Senior Editor
Eli Blumenthal is a senior editor at CNET with a particular focus on covering the latest in the ever-changing worlds of telecom, streaming and sports. He previously worked as a technology reporter at USA Today.
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Eli Blumenthal
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Verizon is upping its minimum wage, announcing on Monday that it will now pay at least $20 per hour to retail, sales and customer service teams nationwide. The company says that the new increase will automatically apply to new hires, while current employees will have their rates automatically adjusted. 

For retail and inside sales -- Verizon staff who work on small and medium businesses -- the rate will be when the "base salary plus target commission are combined." In addition to the wage increase, the company says it is adding in "premium pay differentials" for assistant managers who work on Sundays and holidays as well as for those who are bilingual.

The company will also be offering sign-on bonuses for retail specialist and assistant manager positions in "many markets around the country." 

"Our V Teamers give their best day in and day out to support our customers with all of their needs, which is why we want to make sure we support them as well," said Krista Bourne, chief operating officer for Verizon's Consumer Group, in a press release announcing the move. "These changes are the direct result of employee feedback and will help us remain an attractive employer in this competitive environment."

While a notable increase for Verizon, the nation's largest carrier is now catching up to some of its rivals. In December, T-Mobile announced that it would be moving to a baseline minimum wage of at least $20 per hour for its full and part-time staff. Both, however, lag behind AT&T. 

In response to a CNET request for comment, Jim Greer, an AT&T spokesman, sent over a similar statement to the one it released in December noting that it is "the only national wireless carrier with a fully unionized non-management workforce" and that its "full-time Mobility customer service employees earn an average of $26 an hour in total pay."