The John Lewis Partnership, which owns the British retailers John Lewis and Waitrose, has revealed plans to hire more than 7,000 temporary workers across the UK.

The recruitment drive is in preparation to meet the increased demand expected over the Christmas period.

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The company will advertise seasonal roles across its 331 Waitrose shops, including supermarket assistants, night shift workers and customer delivery drivers for Waitrose’s online grocery shopping service.

It will also enrol individuals for sales and merchandising positions at 34 John Lewis stores.

In addition to temporary roles, the John Lewis Partnership plans to add more than 550 permanent full-time drivers and warehouse partners to its workforce.

These employees will work across distribution centres and customer delivery centres for and John

John Lewis Partnership people director Nikki Humphrey said: “We know that as the first Christmas after lockdown, customers will want to make it really special and we’re throwing everything we can into helping them celebrate – our festive team will have a crucial role to play.

“We’re looking for people who can deliver extraordinary service to help customers get what they need to celebrate. We look forward to welcoming people into our team across the country.”

The announcement comes a few months after the John Lewis Partnership revealed plans to cut 1,000 jobs in a store management rearrangement.

The Partnership is also developing a 300,000ft² distribution centre at Bardon, Leicestershire.

Several retailers have announced recruitment drives ahead of the Christmas period, with Amazon sharing plans to hire an additional 125,000 workers in the US.

The e-commerce giant also recently pledged to recruit a further 15,000 full and part-time employees across Canada, as well as planning to increase employees’ wages.

Frontline Amazon staff are set to receive between $17 and $21.65 an hour under the company’s new wage system, up from their current starting wage of around $16 an hour.