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Walmart Chain Asda in Talks to Streamline Staff Numbers

Walmart Chain Asda in Talks to Streamline Staff Numbers

LEEDS, U.K. - Having already taken aim at its operations stateside, retail giant Walmart is now looking to thin out its “overstaffed” Asda store locations. Currently Britain’s third-largest grocery chain, according to source The Sun, Asda reportedly has begun preliminary talks with 3,257 employees across 18 under-performing stores.

“We are currently in discussions with a number of our stores about changes that are needed to the number of hours required to run that store for our customers,” an Asda spokesperson told The Guardian. “It is common practice for a supermarket to need to make changes to hours based on the changing shopping habits of customers. We understand that any conversations about change are unsettling, but it is always our upmost priority to find alternative roles or working patterns for impacted colleagues.”

Asda Storefront

Not all of the 3,257 employees in consultations will lose their jobs or even see reductions in hours, however, The Sun predicts that this new round of cuts may come near to numbers in the hundreds. The Sun also notes that among the 18 branches in question are Halifax in West Yorkshire, Broadstairs in Kent, and the Basildon Eastgate store in Essex.

The Guardian cited an extra 59 branches that have also been engaged in "informal consultations,” but clarified that it was strictly in relation to a change in working hours, not staffing cuts.

In the U.S., Walmart has introduced a number of cuts and streamlining propositions in several areas of its business, including changes in corporate, regional support, e-commerce, and technology division personnel. This particular cut to the Asda branch follows what investors say was one of the company’s most disappointing fiscal reports since being purchased by Walmart in 1999.

Walmart Asda