One of Britain’s leading supermarkets Tesco is considering cutting its staff by 39,000 over the next three years, following a fall in profits.
The job losses would equate to one in every six employees being let go, either through cutting job roles or reducing hours, according to The Guardian.
The potential job losses were revealed in a leaked document, entitled ‘Project Pace’. An extract was posted on the website verylittlehelps.com, a forum used by Tesco staff.
Tesco confirmed the validity of the document, but stipulated that it had modelled various scenarios and had no near future plans to announce further job losses.
The group, which employs more than 300,000 people in the UK, cut thousands of jobs last year as its new boss, Dave Lewis, tried to turn around the company’s financial performance.
The retailer reported a £6.4bn pre-tax loss last year, one of the biggest in British corporate history.
The report says Tesco has modelled the impact of a £500m reduction in the amount it pays in-store staff. This cut would be after recognising the additional cost of introducing the “national living wage”, which means staff over the age of 25 must be paid at least £7.20 an hour from April.
According to the Guardian, roughly 45,000 people leave Tesco every year through natural wastage, meaning the cuts could be achieved without redundancies if the company chooses to not replace departing employees.
Britain’s big four supermarkets have already cut thousands of jobs in the last year as they adapt to falling sales in their supermarkets. Last year Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons closed dozens of shops.
In contrast, Aldi and Lidl, the German discounters, are hiring thousands of workers.