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Marks & Spencer to cut 525 jobs

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Marks and Spencer has confirmed cutting 525 jobs at its head office and also reduce the number of roles permanently based in central London by 400, across IT and logistic, according to a press statement released on Monday.

The cuts would amount to about one in seven of the 3,500 staff working across the retailer’s seven UK head offices. Both direct and contract employees are affected.

The decision is made by new CEO Steve Rowe, who was awarded the top job after nearly 30 years with the company.  He explained that M&S has become too complex and inefficient and the job cuts aim to remove duplication, drive accountability and establish clear, consistent processes, which in turn will strip out unnecessary costs.

“M&S has to become a simpler and more effective organisation if we are to deliver our plans to recover and grow our business. It is never easy to propose changes that impact on our people, but I believe that the proposals outlined today are absolutely necessary and will help us build a different type of M&S – one that can take bolder, pacier decisions, be more profitable and ultimately better serve our customers.” he said in the press release.

The company has already opened consultations with staff over the job cuts.

A week before the job cuts, M&S announced shop staff will receive a 15% pay rise, which would take in-store wages to £8.50 per (HK$85) hour or £9.65 (HK$96)in London.

But the decision has drawn more criticism than praise, shop-floor complained that they are losing money due to changes to pay and pensions.   Staff could potentially lose thousands of pounds after the employer removed premiums for working Sundays and antisocial hours, trimmed bank holiday payments and changed pension payments.

After more than 90,000 people signed a petition calling on the chain to scrap the changes M&S said last Friday that staff would receive extra compensation to ensure their pay did not fall below current levels in future, the Guardian reports.

ALSO READ: Barclays reported to cut about 100 jobs in Singapore

Photo/ 123RF

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