Sainsbury’s shake-up to see 800 jobs swept away

Sainsbury's is to reduce operations. Picture: Malcolm McCurrach
Sainsbury's is to reduce operations. Picture: Malcolm McCurrach
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Sainsbury’s is to cut 800 jobs as it becomes the latest big supermarket chain to restructure its operations in the face of challenging trading conditions.

The group, with more than 1,200 stores and about 161,000 employees, said yesterday that it will review its department and deputy manager positions, with more resources invested into other shopfloor roles.

We have to reflect changes in how our customers shop

Roger Burnley

It will also replace night shifts with early morning and evening shifts in some stores in an effort to improve availability for customers.

Redeployment opportunities will be made available but Sainsbury’s said it expects the proposals will result in about 800 fewer roles.

The proposals will help the company achieve some of the £500 million in cost savings it hopes to make over the next three years.

It is the latest restructuring by a major supermarket operator after Tesco announced store closures and thousands of jobs losses and Bradford-based rival Morrisons said it planned to axe up to 720 head-office jobs.

Roger Burnley, Sainsbury’s retail and operations director, said: “We set out very clearly last year that we have to reflect the changes in when and how our customers are shopping.

“These proposals will help us maintain and improve customer service by having more colleagues on hand and well-replenished shelves at all times.

“The formal consultation starts today and, where possible, we hope colleagues will opt to move to other roles or stores. We expect the new structures to be in place later this year and, as a result, we will be set up to work more effectively together to better serve our customers.”

On Wednesday, Tesco posted a bottom-line loss of £6.4 billion but new boss Dave Lewis said there were encouraging signs that his trading strategy could deliver a recovery.