Supermarket chain Morrisons is to create an extra 3,500 jobs to help deal with the Covid-19 outbreak.
The Bradford-based chain is experiencing a surge in demand for home delivery services in response to the growing numbers of households self-isolating in order to protect themselves from the virus.
In order to meet this demand, it is expanding it service and, in order to support the roll-out, Morrisons will be recruiting around 2,500 pickers and drivers.
As well as recruiting 2,500 pickers and drivers to expand home delivery, Morrisons will be recruiting around 1,000 people to work in the company’s distribution centres.
The vacancies will be advertised through a campaign on radio and social media and the Morrisons jobs website morrisons.jobs
In addition, Morrisons is to introduce new ways of delivering groceries and more slots for customers, which will also help vulnerable people and those affected by the virus. New measures include:
- Launching a new range of simple-to-order food parcels, including options for vegetarians, from March 23rd.
- Making more delivery slots available to customers both through Morrisons.com and the Morrisons Store on Amazon Prime Now. Morrisons will use 100 further stores to pick customers’ shopping over the coming weeks.
- Launching a customer call centre for orders to be taken over the phone so that people who do not shop online can still order food.
The chain is also setting up measures to protect staff. It is launching a colleague hardship fund to support colleagues who are in financial difficulty as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak.
Colleagues will be able to apply for funds if they experience a financial setback and are struggling to make ends meet.
Elsewhere the chain said:
- Those who are sick with the Coronavirus will receive sick pay whether or not they would normally be eligible.
- Colleagues who are affected either because of self isolation, or by playing their part in looking after close family members or the vulnerable in their local community, will also be eligible for sick pay, alternative shifts or holiday.
The chain will also be asking customers at the checkout to pay, if possible, by card or smartphone to reduce cash handling and issuing hand sanitiser to checkouts at all stores and significantly increasing cleaning on places that colleagues and customers touch.
David Potts, Chief Executive of Morrisons, said: “We expect the days, weeks and months ahead to be very testing and we are determined to do our bit. These measures will support our very hard-working colleagues, enable us to provide more food to more people in their homes and create opportunities for people whose jobs are affected by the coronavirus.”