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John Lewis to cut up to 11,000 jobs

Chloe Burney
29 January 2024

John Lewis has confirmed plans to further slash its workforce over the next five years, just days after the retail group warned of reduced redundancy payouts and pay cuts as part of its complete overhaul.

The John Lewis Partnership, which runs the department store chain and Waitrose grocery business, said that plans to return the business to profitability will involve further staff reductions.

It said the move will provide the business with more funds to put towards supporting its budgets and could be put towards its next pay review.

The group employs 76,000 people across its supermarkets, department stores, and head office. Up to 11,000 jobs, or 10% of the workforce, could reportedly be axed, according to the Guardian. These losses would include redundancies and not replacing vacant positions.

A spokesperson for John Lewis said in a statement sent to the BBC on Saturday that it "has a plan to return to profit, which involves investing heavily to enhance our customer offer, technology, stores and becoming more efficient".

It added: "This is working and performance is improving, but as we have already announced, that sadly means reducing the number of partners we need in our business.

"It would be inappropriate to discuss details and our partners will be the first to know about any changes."

The announcement comes after the employee-owned business cautioned in March last year over further potential job losses as it sought to more aggressively turn around the business.

In its most recent performance update in September last year, the business slumped to another financial loss, although this narrowed to £59 million amid its continued turnaround efforts.

Chairwoman Dame Sharon White also warned that the five-year transformation plan launched by the retail group in 2020 will take two years longer than planned.

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