The Home Depot is enhancing its supply chain capabilities to keep up with customers’ growing expectations for convenience and speed.
The home improvement giant announced it will open three distribution centers in the Atlanta area during the next 18 months. The new centers will support increased demand by Home Depot’s professional and do-it-yourself customers for flexible delivery and pick-up, the company said.
"Retail has changed more in the past four years than in our company's 40-year history,” said Stephanie Smith, senior VP of supply chain development and delivery. “Customers expect to shop whenever, wherever and however they want, whether they're buying a hammer or a pallet of pavers. We're investing to meet the changing delivery needs of our DIY and Pro customers, whether they're at home, at their job sites or picking up in the store."
The announcement comes as Home Depot’s online business is surging. The retailer’s online sales jumped about 80% in its first quarter, ended May 3, over the year-ago period, and accounted for approximately 15% of its net sales.
In 2017, Home Depot announced a $1.2 billion investment to open about 150 supply chain facilities during the next five years, with the goal of expanding its same-day and next-day delivery options to 90% of the U.S. population. The facilities include a variety of formats to meet the needs of both its professional and do-it-yourself customers.
The largest of the new Atlanta-area facilities will be a 657,600-sq.-ft. distribution center, located in Locust Grove, that will focus on fast replenishment to stores in the Southeast. Initial hiring is underway for the center, which is expected to open in the next few months.
A new "flatbed delivery center," set to open in Stonecrest in 2021, will offer same-day and next-day delivery of bulk and oversized orders to both Pro and DIY customers. (Earlier this year, the company opened its first flatbed delivery center in Dallas to increase the accessibility and reliability of deliveries in that market.)
The third of the newly announced centers will be an order fulfillment operation that will open in late 2021 in East Point. It will offer same-day and next day delivery of the most popular products primarily ordered by institutional business customers for their maintenance, repair and operations needs.
The Home Depot noted it has created more than 5,000 new jobs in Georgia during the last five years through the opening of various distribution centers and office locations for technology, e-commerce, marketing and customer service. The three new centers are projected to bring approximately 1,000 additional jobs to the Atlanta area.