Dyson blames virus for mak­ing 600 staff re­dun­dant in UK

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Front Page - By Alan Tovey

DYSON is ax­ing 600 of its 4,000 UK staff in a scram­ble to ad­just to the post-Covid econ­omy.

Re­dun­dan­cies will be spread across the busi­ness but largely fo­cused on re­tail roles, with Dyson em­ploy­ees work­ing at de­part­ment store con­ces­sions likely to be hit hard.

There will also be cuts to the vac­uum maker’s cus­tomer ser­vice team at its com­pany head­quar­ters in Malmes­bury,

Wilt­shire, along with back-of­fice func­tions such as its le­gal de­part­ment. Some re­search and de­vel­op­ment roles are also un­der­stood to be af­fected.

Demand for its vac­u­ums, fans and hairdry­ers is thought to have shifted on­line as shops were forced to close to con­trol the pan­demic, mean­ing many in-store jobs were no longer vi­able when re­stric­tions came to an end.

The com­pany had al­ready been look­ing to move cus­tomer sup­port on­line, and this shift is now be­ing sped up. A

Dyson spokesman said: “The Covid-19 cri­sis has ac­cel­er­ated changes in con­sumer be­hav­iour and there­fore re­quires changes in how we en­gage with our cus­tomers and how we sell our prod­ucts. We are evolv­ing our or­gan­i­sa­tion and re­flect­ing th­ese changes to make us faster, more ag­ile, and bet­ter able to grow sus­tain­ably.”

The job losses are part of a global re­or­gan­i­sa­tion that will see a fur­ther 300 staff axed in other coun­tries, out of a to­tal of 14,000 work­ers world­wide. Dyson

did not re­veal whether con­sumers had cut back on buy­ing its goods dur­ing the pan­demic as well as shift­ing to the in­ter­net.

The busi­ness has made Sir James Dyson one of Britain’s rich­est men with an es­ti­mated for­tune of £16bn. He moved large parts of it abroad last year, shift­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing to Sin­ga­pore.

Dyson said that none of its staff were fur­loughed dur­ing the Covid-19 cri­sis, and the busi­ness did not take any gov­ern­ment sup­port.

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