Posted on January 31, 2019 by staff

Redundancies expected at Shop Direct


Shop Direct is making changes to its teams which are expected to result in redundancies.

The UK’s largest integrated digital retailer and financial services provider says it has initiated the next phase of changes to its retail team, aligning it around the group’s four key product categories – fashion, home, electrical and developing categories.

The etailer will begin consultation with Usdaw, its recognised trade union, as it works through proposals to create new and merge some existing roles within its four category teams, as well as in retail planning and operations, and marketing.

The firm said the proposed changes will enable it to enhance its customer proposition, attract more target customers, drive continued category growth and digital innovation, and provide clearer career paths for its people.

The proposals build on changes made in September 2018 when Shop Direct introduced the role of category director across its product categories, consolidated all marketing activity under the new position of chief marketing officer and created a retail planning and operations team to bring together trade planning and execution.

In July 2018, the etailer merged its product and retail teams for the first time under the leadership of one executive board director, group retail director Sam Perkins.

The consultation will continue for a minimum of 45 days, with some redundancies anticipated.

“We are performing strongly in a hugely competitive and challenging retail market, as evidenced over Christmas when we increased group revenue by 3.7 per cent,” said Sam Perkins, group retail director at Shop Direct.

“But as is true of all businesses, we must constantly improve the experience we offer customers to remain competitive. Continuing to innovate, realigning the way we work, enhancing our capability and simplifying our business will remain key to achieving that.

“This type of change is never easy but is a reality of doing business in today’s dynamic retail world. For our impacted colleagues, our commitment is that we’ll work through this process openly and transparently and with empathy and respect.”

Shop Direct subsidary saw its revenues jump almost nine per cent at the end of 2018 after harnessing the power of artificial intelligence.