Tesco has said it is creating 16,000 new permanent jobs to help it react to “exceptional growth” in its online business.
Supermarket chains have seen demand for online deliveries soar in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, with Tesco more than doubling its delivery customers since the start of March.
It said the recruitment drive will include 10,000 roles for pickers, who select items for customer orders, and 3,000 delivery drivers.
The retailer will also hire staff for a variety of other roles across its stores and distribution centres in the coming weeks and months.
These 16,000 jobs are in addition to around 4,000 permanent jobs which have already been created since the start of the pandemic, Tesco said.
Nevertheless, it said it expects the majority of these roles to be filled by staff who have joined the company on a temporary basis in recent months.
Around 47,000 temporary staff joined Tesco at its peak during the pandemic, although it is understood that most of these roles have since ended.
Tesco said roles will first be offered to temporary staff still with the business, with remaining vacancies then recruited externally.
Jason Tarry, chief executive officer of Tesco UK and ROI, said: “Since the start of the pandemic, our colleagues have helped us to more than double our online capacity, safely serving nearly 1.5 million customers every week and prioritising vulnerable customers to ensure they get the food they need.
“These new roles will help us continue to meet online demand for the long term, and will create permanent employment opportunities for 16,000 people across the UK.”