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Tesco to cut 4,500 jobs as it “simplifies” Metro and Express stores

Tesco has announced it will axe around 4,500 roles as it makes changes to “simplify” store operations at its 153 Tesco Metro stores.

Tesco said customers have changed the way they use Metro stores and in order to run this part of the business more sustainably, it plans to change the way it restocks shelves, ask colleagues to work “more flexibly” across the store to improve customers experience, and create a leaner management structure.

The announcement said: “The Metro format was originally designed for larger, weekly shops, but today nearly 70% of customers use them as convenience stores, buying food for that day.”

The retailer also plans to make changes in 134 of its 1,750 Express stores by cutting opening hours when customer footfall is lower.

“In a challenging, evolving retail environment, with increasing cost pressures, we have to continue to review the way we run our stores to ensure we reflect the way our customers are shopping and do so in the most efficient way,” said Jason Tarry, UK & ROI CEO.

“We do not take any decision which impacts colleagues lightly, but have to make sure we remain relevant for customers and operate a sustainable business now and in the future.”

Last year, it was reported that Tesco was trialling a new “shop and go” technology to enable shoppers to scan and pay for groceries using their smartphone without needing to queue at the check-out. After Amazon Go shook up the industry at beginning of 2018, grocers have been scrabbling to create their own versions of the “just walk out” technology, with Sainsbury’s offering ‘scan as you shop’, Shell trialling an instant checkout solution from IBM, and Co-op creating an in-store mobile checkout app with Mastercard, which also sees customers paying for goods on their mobile.