Asda allows staff to extend weekly hours to help beat the recession

Asda staff can extend their working week from 22 hours to 38 hours as part of plans to help combat the recession, Personnel Today has learned.

The supermarket giant’s HR director, Caroline Massingham, said all 172,000 workers had the option to increase the amount of hours they worked during the downturn, to help boost morale and increase job satisfaction.

The news comes just days after the latest TNS Worldpanel survey of the UK grocery sector found Asda’s market share had risen to 17% in the 12-week period to 12 July, from 16.7% a year earlier.

Massingham said: “What colleagues want most at the moment is job security and support during the recession. By providing this, it sends a message from the business that they are important as individuals.”

The retailer, whose staff turnover currently stands at 17.2%, has also issued a booklet to employees offering information on how to save money during the downturn, and has introduced a ‘law club’ to provide instant access to legal advice on all topics.

“It’s business as usual for us. Everything we do is done at as low a cost as possible – we’ve always counted every pound. We have always operated in a recessionary environment so this is nothing new to us,” she added.

Earlier this year, Asda staff shared a record £22m bonus.

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