M&S Confirms Plan To Cull Head Office Jobs

Marks & Spencer yesterday confirmed reports that it is planning cut hundreds of jobs at its head office as part of moves by new boss Steve Rowe to reduce costs and simplify the business following a prolonged period of underperformance.

Following a review of the business, the company said it was seeking a net reduction of around 525 roles at its Head Office in London through a combination of fewer contractors, natural attrition and redundancies. It also plans reduce the number of roles permanently based in the capital by 400, across IT and Logistics, moving them to its IT centre in Stockley Park, Middlesex.

M&S has entered in to consultation with its staff with regards the proposals which it said would save around 1% of its annual UK costs.

Rowe took over the running of the retailer earlier this year, launching a review that found that M&S had become too complex and inefficient. As well as a series of management changes, he has also outlined plans to turnaround the group’s ailing clothing business. Measures include improving product quality and investing in lowering everyday prices whilst reducing the number of promotions and sales. It also intends to improve availability and invest in store staffing.

Rowe is expected to announce further plans for a strategic overhaul of the business to investors in November which could include a plan to close poorly performing stores and review of its international division.

He said yesterday: “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.”