Western Morning News

John Lewis staff await job cut news

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STAFF at John Lewis Partnershi­p’s head office are set to learn their fate as the retail group pushes ahead with plans to axe around 1,500 jobs in a bid to drasticall­y cut costs.

The employee-owned retail firm was contacting individual workers on Wednesday to tell them if they are risk of redundancy.

In November, the company, which owns the John Lewis department store business and Waitrose supermarke­ts, announced it would consult over a proposal to cut up to 1,500 roles. It will affect staff at its head office sites in Victoria, central London, and Bracknell, Berkshire.

The move is intended to help the business save around £50 million as part of wider plans to reduce its total costs by £300 million. The head office cuts come on top of plans to shut eight John Lewis stores with the loss of 1,300 jobs and the closure of four Waitrose stores in a move affecting 124 staff.

A spokeswoma­n for the company said: “This refers to the November 4 2020 update where we sadly proposed to reduce the size of our head office by April 2021.

“These difficult but necessary changes will help us to create a simpler, pacier head office that enables us to deliver our five-year Partnershi­p Plan.”

The spokeswoma­n added that the company will seek to redeploy workers affected by the cuts and will provide redundancy support and funding for retraining for staff whom they are unable to find new roles.

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