Morrisons is to invest £30m into improving staff conditions across stores.
The news comes following a company-wide consultation, in which employees were asked how stores could be improved. Cheaper coffee, free Wi-Fi and more comfortable rest areas are amongst the changes staff will be able to enjoy, with the intention being to have all stores improved within four years.
“We asked our staff for their views about their stores and many commented about their restrooms saying they would like them to be more relaxing and offer a better food service,” said Morrisons CEO David Potts. “This investment will ensure they are provided with the facilities and food to help them recharge during their breaks.”
Potts added that “we are a business that listens hard to colleagues and responds wherever possible”.
In March the company is scheduled to increase the pay for 90,000 shop floor staff to £8.20 an hour; a higher rise than George Osborne‘s National Living Wage, which is set to be introduced in July.
These moves present a stark contrast to the prospects for staff at rival supermarket chain Asda, which has considered scrapping employee canteens and in-store services in order to cut costs. Reportedly, the chain has consulted around 5,000 in-store staff regarding changes to their roles, or even redundancy.
However, it is by no means a perfect time to be a Morrisons employee: the chain is among the big name retailers preparing to cut premium rates for staff working non-standard hours in order to cushion the impact of the National Living Wage.