Campbeltown job losses continue – Tesco roles under threat

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A spokesman for supermarket chain Tesco has confirmed its Campbeltown store is undergoing a ‘restructure’ which will involve the ‘loss of some roles’.

The Tesco Metro store, which currently employs about 85 people, is one of the town’s biggest employers.

The news of potential job losses comes just a week after the Courier revealed that nine of the 25 Campbeltown Creamery employees have been made redundant.

The Tesco spokesman said that ‘changes’ in the Campbeltown store are part of its broader strategy to ‘simplify and reduce processes and administrative tasks’ at all 153 Tesco Metro stores across the UK.

One-to-one conversations with staff about ‘operational changes’ began on August 5. The spokesman refused to comment on the speculative numbers being spoken of in Campbeltown, but it is expected the changes will lead to an overall reduction of around 4,500 staff across the UK.

The supermarket says the changes will allow it to ‘serve shoppers better’ and run its business ‘more sustainably, in an increasingly competitive and challenging retail environment’. It says it will also allow it to ‘better align the way it runs its stores to the way that customers are shopping in them’.

Jason Tarry, Tesco’s UK and ROI CEO, said: ‘In a challenging, evolving retail environment, with increasing cost pressures, we have to continue to review the way we run our stores to ensure we reflect the way our customers are shopping and do so in the most efficient way.’

The Metro format was originally designed for larger, weekly shops, but today nearly 70 per cent of customers use them as convenience stores, buying food for that day. Therefore, the changes Tesco is introducing at its Metro stores include the following:

  • Faster and simpler ways of filling shelves, with fewer products stored in back rooms and more stock going straight to the shop floor;
  • Staff working more flexibly across the store to improve customer service at the busiest times of the day and in the right areas of the store;
  • A leaner management structure, as ways of working are simplified.

Tesco’s priority is to ‘support affected colleagues, helping find alternative roles within Tesco for as many as possible’.

Mr Tarry added: ‘We do not take any decision which impacts colleagues lightly, but have to make sure we remain relevant for customers and operate a sustainable business now and in the future.’

Some small changes are also being made in 134 of the 1,750 Express stores, where customer footfall is lower. Changes in these stores will include a slight reduction in opening hours during quieter trading periods at the start and end of the day, and simplifying stock routines.

There will also be some localised changes in some large stores, which will see Tesco streamlining operational routines, including processes for moving stock around the store and filling shelves.