Supermarket chain Morrisons has announced its intention to create 3,500 new jobs in order to expand its home delivery service amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The supermarket said it would be recruiting around 2,500 pickers and drivers, plus 1,000 staff in its distribution centres. The vacancies will be advertised through a campaign on radio and social media, as well as the Morrisons jobs website.
The company will also make more delivery slots available and set up a call centre for those without access to online shopping. It also plans to use 100 further stores to pick up customers’ shopping over the coming weeks.
Introduce colleague hardship fund
Elsewhere, the UK chain has introduced a colleague hardship fund to support colleagues who are in financial difficulty as well as pledging sick pay to all employees and redeploying colleagues who are vulnerable to the crisis.
The supermarket said it was also launching a new range of simple to order food parcels, including options for vegetarians, from 23 March.
David Potts, Chief Executive of Morrisons, said, “We expect the days, weeks and months ahead to be very testing and we are determined to do our bit.
“These measures will support our very hard-working colleagues, enable us to provide more food to more people in their homes and create opportunities for people whose jobs are affected by the coronavirus.”
Safety precautions for customers
Morrisons also said it would look to protect employees where possible, by asking customers to pay by card or smartphone to reduce cash handling, issuing hand sanitiser at checkouts, and ramping up cleaning.
These measures follow on from Morrisons' announcement last week that it would be implementing immediate payments for its smaller suppliers, supporting cash flow during this very difficult time for the economy.