HR shake-up helps Sainsbury’s compete

Sainsbury’s claims its latest sales figures show it is closing the gap on
Tesco mid-way through a three-year change programme including a shake-up of
central human resources.

The supermarket giant reported a 6.4 per cent growth in sales for the last
quarter and rebuffed media reports that 100 store managers were facing the axe
following performance reviews.

The company has restructured its central HR department after consulting with
employees and has appointed a new HR director, Imelda Walsh, to head the team.

Walsh reports to board member John Adshead who has responsibility for IT and
business transformation as well as HR.

"My appointment is about providing greater focus and leadership for HR,
given John’s wider remit, and proactive succession planning to ensure HR
continues to have a big influence at the highest level," said Walsh, who
took up the post in October.

Her priorities will include developing the employer brand, knowledge
management and linking reward to performance, she said.

Last year the jobs in central HR were redesigned and three small specialist
teams were created, covering organisational change, resourcing and reward.

The HR team has also developed a pool of 30 consultants, some of whom are
seconded from the business to implement HR programmes on behalf of the
specialist teams.

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