J Sainsbury is to cut 500 office jobs, with another 650 positions also at risk, as the supermarket chain overhauls workspace and looks to boost its online offering.
The grocer, the UK’s second largest after Tesco, is looking to simplify store support centre teams in a variety of departments, including commercial operations, human resources and supply chain and logistics.
In addition, it will close offices in Coventry and in Victoria, London; will vacate two of the remaining five floors it occupies at its head office in Holborn, London; and will reduce its office space by one floor in Manchester.
Staff in these offices will be moved to other locations, which are being refurbished to create “collaborative workspaces” intended to allow for more flexible working.
Simon Roberts, chief executive, said: “Our new plan puts food first and will create as simpler, nimbler and more efficient business. The money we save will enable us to invest in what customers really care about.
“I know change is difficult, but to the best job we can for our customers, it is vital that we adapt.”
Sainsbury’s also said that 20 stores in and around London would have their online departments expanded by March 2022, with the current online fulfilment centre in Bromley-by-Bow, east London, slated for closure, with the loss of up to 650 jobs. Sainsbury’s said it hoped to redeploy most of the OFC staff in neighbouring stores.
This is the second round of job losses announced by Roberts, who took over in June last year. In November, he confirmed plans to close Argos shops and in-store meat, fish and deli counters, putting up to 3,500 positions at risk.