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Sainsbury's set to cut 800 jobs in shake-up

Published:  23 April, 2015

Sainsbury's has become the latest retailer to announce job cuts in a radical shake-up of its stores.

The retailer this morning announced around 800 jobs could potentially be cut, with department and deputy manager in the firing line. It is also replacing night shift with early morning and evening shifts in around 100 stores, which it says will improve stock availability for customers, but said "redeployment opportunities" would be available for most affected staff. 

It follows a review which Sainsbury's said addressed how resources could be aligned to better meet the changing customers needs. More resources will be invested in other shop floor roles, it said, to reflect the changes in when and how customers are shopping.

"Reducing the number of department manager roles will give colleagues who serve customers on tills and restock the shelves the opportunity to extend their hours or take additional shifts," the statement said. "This means more customer-facing colleagues will be on hand to offer service, with the right leadership and structures in place."

Sainsbury's retail and operations director Roger Burnley said the change made it "challenging time" for the affected staff and the company would do all it could to "help them move through this period of uncertainty as quickly as possible".

"These are exceptionally difficult decisions to make and we have not taken them lightly," he said.

The move will contribute to around £500m of cost savings over the next three years as laid out in last year's company strategic review.

The cuts follow the restructuring of central roles in the business' support stores in Holborn, Manchester and Coventry, which saw around 500 job losses.

However last month the retailer announced it would create 480 specialist jobs in London and Coventry to strengthen its in-house digital and technology platforms to boost its online and mobile shopping app. It intends to roll out Click and Collect to 100 stores by the end of the year.

In March, the retailer reported like-for-like retail sales down 1.9% in the ten weeks to 14 March 2015, and warned that food deflation was here to stay.

Last week Tesco announced a shake-up of its wine buying team, and Morrisons also revealed plans to cut 720 jobs across its store.