UK department store chain John Lewis has plans to axe about 400 jobs in its soft furnishing services and restaurants as part of restructuring of its business.
Approximately 770 employees will be affected by the reorganisation, and they will be encouraged to apply for the 386 newly created posts.
The move comes as the retailer accelerates its strategy to adapt to the changing needs and behaviours of customers, who are now commonly favouring online shopping.
John Lewis operations director Dino Rocos said: “Our partners are passionate about offering the very best customer service and these proposals will allow us to modernise our business as it adapts to the changing needs of our customers and the role that shops play in their lives.
“The proposed new structure will allow us to harness partners' knowledge and skills, giving them more scope to be in the right place at the right time to deliver great service to our customers when and where it's needed.”
The chain has proposed to move to a regional model for its Home Estimation and Fitting services.
A single central customer administration hub has also been proposed to manage customer orders, which will replace the existing individual branch administration teams.
John Lewis plans to set up a new training facility to support the creation of this team, as well as implement an improved estimator and fitter booking system.
The chain plans to extend the catering model that it has been successfully using in a third of its shops for some time, which uses a centrally created menu with quality ingredients and requires less 'on-site' preparation.
This new model will enable the retailer to change its menu more regularly to keep up with trends and meet the dietary requirements of customers more easily. It will also help provide a more consistent menu offering across all of its shops.
John Lewis operates 48 shops across the UK, including 34 are department stores.
Image: John Lewis store in Liverpool. Photo: courtesy of Man vyi.