Sainsbury’s places 1,150 jobs at risk to invest in food

Sainsbury’s has announced a shake-up that places up to 1,150 jobs at risk.

The UK’s second largest supermarket chain said it had started a consultation on removing 500 office roles while 650 other workers were under threat through plans to close an online delivery warehouse in southeast London in June.

Sainsbury’s said it hoped to redeploy most of the staff at the fulfilment centre, in Bromley, to nearby stores.

It said the restructuring would impact its commercial operations, human resources, supply chain and logistics, technology and general merchandise and clothing teams.

Head office space was to be shrunk as part of the plans with a reduction of one floor at its Manchester office and two floors at its central London site.

Sainsbury’s said the shake-up would free up cash for investment in its food offering as the grocery sector remains locked in a price war.

The company, which also owns Argos, had just last week rewarded frontline staff for their efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic with pay rises and a one-off bonus.

Sainsbury’s follows Asda this year in planning job losses after brisk industry hiring over the past 12 months to meet demand for deliveries.

Asda said it was placing up to 3,000 store jobs at risk under its plans to grow its online sales capabilities.

Sainsbury’s chief executive Simon Roberts said: “Our new plan puts food first and will create a simpler, nimbler and more efficient business.

“The money we save will enable us to invest in what customers really care about – lower prices, exciting new products and the most convenient ways for them to shop.

“I know change is difficult, but to do the best job we can for our customers, it is vital that we adapt.

“I understand this will be a very difficult time for affected colleagues and we will do everything we can to fully support them.”

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