How does Walmart evaluate a candidate’s ability to handle difficult customers

In the fast-paced world of retail, one of the critical skills that every employee must possess is the ability to handle difficult customers. Walmart, being one of the largest retail chains globally, places great emphasis on ensuring that its employees are adept at dealing with challenging situations involving customers. But how exactly does Walmart evaluate a candidate’s ability in this regard?

In this article, we will delve into the methods and strategies employed by Walmart to assess a candidate’s aptitude for handling difficult customers.

How does Walmart evaluate a candidate's ability to handle difficult customers

1. Application Screening

The evaluation process begins with the initial application screening. When candidates apply for a position at Walmart, their applications are reviewed carefully. While this stage may not directly assess customer handling skills, it serves as the first filter. The applications that pass this stage move forward in the selection process.

2. Behavioral Interview Questions

Candidates who make it past the initial screening are invited for interviews. Walmart uses behavioral interview questions to assess a candidate’s past experiences and how they handled challenging customer interactions in previous roles. Questions like, “Can you share an experience where you successfully resolved a customer complaint?” or “How do you handle irate customers?” help gauge their abilities.

3. Role-Play Scenarios

A unique aspect of Walmart’s evaluation process is the use of role-play scenarios during interviews. Candidates are placed in simulated situations where they must interact with difficult customers. This practical exercise helps Walmart’s hiring team observe how candidates respond under pressure.

4. Customer Service Assessment

Walmart often administers a customer service assessment test to evaluate a candidate’s knowledge of customer service principles and their ability to apply them in real-world scenarios. This test assesses a candidate’s problem-solving skills and their understanding of Walmart’s customer-centric approach.

5. Reference Checks

Reference checks are a crucial part of Walmart’s evaluation process. The company contacts a candidate’s previous employers to gain insights into their performance, including how they handled challenging customer situations.

6. On-the-Job Training

Once hired, new employees go through extensive training programs. These programs not only teach essential job-related skills but also focus on customer service. Candidates are trained in handling difficult customers effectively while maintaining the company’s values and policies.

7. Performance Evaluation

Walmart conducts regular performance evaluations for all employees. Part of these evaluations includes assessing how well an employee handles difficult customer interactions. Positive feedback and consistent demonstration of customer service skills are rewarded.

8. Continuous Improvement

Walmart encourages employees to continually improve their customer service skills. The company provides resources for ongoing education and development, ensuring that employees are always equipped to handle challenging customer situations effectively.

9. Employee Feedback

Walmart values feedback from its employees. They often seek input on how to better support staff in dealing with difficult customers. This two-way communication helps in refining their evaluation and training processes.

10. Mystery Shoppers

Walmart occasionally employs mystery shoppers who pose as regular customers to assess the in-store experience. This approach helps identify areas where employees might need more training in handling difficult customers.


Does Walmart provide customer service training to all employees?

Yes, Walmart provides comprehensive customer service training to all its employees to ensure they can handle difficult customer situations effectively.

What kind of role-play scenarios are used in Walmart’s interviews?

Role-play scenarios at Walmart’s interviews simulate situations involving irate or challenging customers to evaluate how candidates respond under pressure.

Are there opportunities for employees to advance their customer service skills at Walmart?

Yes, Walmart encourages continuous improvement and provides resources for employees to enhance their customer service skills.

How important are reference checks in Walmart’s hiring process?

Reference checks are essential in evaluating a candidate’s past performance, including their ability to handle difficult customer interactions.

What is the key to success in handling difficult customers at Walmart?

The key to success is a combination of effective training, problem-solving skills, and a commitment to upholding Walmart’s customer-centric values.


In conclusion, Walmart takes the evaluation of a candidate’s ability to handle difficult customers seriously. From the initial application screening to continuous improvement and feedback, every step in the hiring and training process is designed to ensure that employees can effectively manage challenging customer interactions.

This commitment to customer service excellence is one of the reasons why Walmart continues to be a retail giant.

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