UK retailer M&S has revealed that a multi-level consultation programme could result in eliminating 7,000 roles in the next three months.

The move is part of the company’s strategy to streamline business in both at stores and management level.

Job cuts will affect staff from its central support centre, in regional management, and in UK stores. It expects the majority of the reduction to be through voluntary departures and early retirement.

The company will initiate an extensive programme of communication with colleagues.

M&S chief executive Steve Rowe said: “In May we outlined our plans to learn from the crisis, accelerate our transformation and deliver a stronger, more agile business in a world in which some customer habits were changed forever.

“As part of our Never The Same Again programme to embed the positive changes in ways of working through the crisis, we are today announcing proposals to further streamline store operations and management structures.

“These proposals are an important step in becoming a leaner, faster business set up to serve changing customer needs and we are committed to supporting colleagues through this time.”

Under the transformation strategy, M&S is planning to focus on digital channels and re-launch its data and CRM platform under the Sparks banner.

The company will invest in online fulfilment and the new ambient food warehouse. It will continue to reshape the store portfolio throughout the year.

Last month, Marks and Spencer Group planned to eliminate 950 jobs as it accelerates the transformation of its retail management structure.

Recently, British retailer Debenhams announced plans to cut 2,500 jobs in department stores and warehouses to ensure itself “every chance of a viable future”.