Lidl and Asda create 7,500 temporary jobs to cope with outbreak
Supermarket Lidl has said it wants to recruit 2,500 workers to start immediately in stores to help cope with the surge in demand due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Bosses said the new positions will be four-week contracts, helping to restock shelves and assist staff.
The move comes as Asda also revealed plans to hire 5,000 temporary workers and is working alongside 20 national businesses who are being forced to let go of staff, to ensure those workers can remain employed.
At Lidl, bosses said they were particularly keen to hear from workers who has lost their job as a result of businesses shutting down over Covid-19, with pay of £9.30 an hour for staff outside London, or £10.75 in the capital.
The move follows similar announcements from Co-op and Morrisons that they are vastly expanding their workforce to cope with the extra demand of families in self-isolation.
Lidl, which has 800 stores across the country, said: “The new hires will be responsible for working together to keep the store clean, tidy and the shelves well stocked so that customers can get the products they need. Shifts could include mornings, evenings and weekends.”
Christian Hartnagel, chief executive of Lidl GB, said: “Our store colleagues are doing an incredible job at keeping our shelves stocked, and serving communities during an extremely challenging period.
“Temporarily expanding our teams is one way we can help support our colleagues and customers, whilst providing work to those that have had their employment affected by the current situation.”
Office-based colleagues will also be working from home, and the company will introduce “flexible options including sick pay, holiday pay, advanced holiday pay and mobile working where applicable”.
At Asda, chief executive Roger Burnley said: “Never in my 30 years in retail have I ever felt so keenly the role played by supermarkets in our communities.”
He added: “During these difficult times everyone has to work together to help people most affected by Covid-19, and Asda is pleased to play its part.
“That is why today (Friday) we have committed to hiring more than 5,000 employees who have lost their jobs due to Covid-19 and have been left with deep concerns about their household budgets.”
Earlier in the week, Asda announced it will be paying small suppliers immediately, to help keep their businesses operating, and provide a rent-free quarter to 250 small business tenants based in the grocer’s larger stores.