Supermarket chain Morrisons has announced that it is to create 7,000 jobs in 2012 as the retailer continues to focus on expansion.
In keeping with its commitment to offering quality fresh food, many of the new opportunities will be craft skills jobs such as butchery, bakery and fishmongery and the retailer is set to open 25 new stores next year.
As part of a drive to ensure that local towns and provincial areas are serviced by the grocer, Morrisons is insisting that building suppliers employ local people as it seeks to ensure more households have a store within easy reach.
Currently there are more than six million households that do not have a Morrisons store within easy driving distance and this strategy aims to improve this. Typically more than half the new employees at a new store are previously unemployed and 75 per cent are typically from the local area of the store.
Norman Pickavance, Group HR Director at Morrisons, said that the retailer maintains its focus on ambitious growth plans despite economic gloom.
“At a time when the number of young and long-term unemployed continues to increase we will provide opportunities for many people and help them build a career in retailing,” he commented.
“That means we won‘t just be providing a job we‘re committed to training our new colleagues so that they have the capability to move from the shop floor to the top floor.”
Last month, the grocer reported strong sales over its three quarter period, as total sales excluding VAT rose 4.6 per cent and like-for-like sales grew 2.4 per cent compared to last year and Pickavance believes that the company is in a good position to continue growth.
“We feel that the catalyst we are providing is key to moving people from being excluded to being included by providing people with work, dignity and opportunity,” he said.