Wilko plans to axe more than 400 jobs as it restructures after a fall in sales and a struggle to bounce back after the pandemic.

Wilko Sunderland

Wilko intends to cut more than 400 jobs

The general merchandise retailer has told staff it intends to cut jobs including assistant store managers, head office managers, retail supervisors and call centre workers, The Guardian reported.

Wilko said the cuts include a reduction of hours for team supervisors across 150 of its 401 stores, resulting in the equivalent of 150 full-time job cuts.

The retailer will also outsource work at its contact centre in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, resulting in around 95 staff members losing their jobs.

Chief executive Mark Jackson said: “We’ve identified significant changes to the Wilko operating model to enable us to stabilise the business and then thrive again. This includes some proposed changes to our management structure at both our stores and head office.

“We’re fully supporting affected individuals. We know change will be unsettling to our team members and the wider business, and we’re acting swiftly to put in place the new organisational structure to stabilise and grow.”

A GMB union spokesperson told The Guardian: “Wilko is going through significant changes at the moment and ultimately the business is in a fight for survival.

“We are seeing continued and increasing job losses throughout the retail sector and this is something that warrants an urgent, strategic response from the government.”

The announcement of job cuts comes after Wilko secured a £40m funding lifeline from high street lender Hilco last month, following recent struggles with supply chain disruption and significant footfall declines. 

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