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Jobs at risk at Specsavers

Jobs at risk at Specsavers

Thursday 02 April 2020

Jobs at risk at Specsavers

Thursday 02 April 2020

The island's largest private employer, Specsavers has warned up to 5% of its staff working in Guernsey that they may be facing redundancy.

The impact on the head office and support roles here are down to the downturn in business globally, with stores and warehouse closing as the corona virus pandemic makes its way around the world.

The family run firm's CEO has said they are facing "incredibly tough times" which are "unprecedented" and the company is making a number of changes as a result to try and protect its workforce, here and overseas.

John Perkins said the company is trying to treat people fairly but changes are coming, to protect the future of Specsavers itself. 

"These are incredibly tough times. The circumstances we face are unprecedented and clearly require us to act in order to protect the future of Specsavers. However, in doing this, we have done everything we can to manage the impact in the best way possible, treating people with fairness and in the way that we would want to be treated ourselves." 

John Perkins correct size

Pictured: Specsavers CEO, John Perkins. 

In Guernsey, Specsavers has temporarily changed the working hours of many of its staff at its La Villiaze support office as a result of the ongoing covid-19 pandemic.

That decision was taken after stores across the world either closed or had to change their opening hours to only allow for essential and urgent care. That has had a 'significant impact on the sales and revenue of the company.'


Pictured: The optical giant is now offering emergency services only in many areas. 

Specsavers employs thousands of people across the work, and in Guernsey, more than 500 people work at its head office at La Villiaze, St Andrews. Most of those employees are now working from home in their existing roles. 

Mr Perkins said the firm is now consulting those colleagues about the changes being made.

He warned that although they have done everything that they can to minimise redundancies, 'it is likely that in the region of 5% of roles will be placed at risk'. 

"It is with an extremely heavy heart that we have had to come to this decision, but no business can survive long-term without customers and an income stream. We have a clear need to respond and take remedial action to address our costs as quickly as we can in order to protect our business," said Mr Perkins.

"We are grateful that the Guernsey Government is doing all that it can to support businesses and their employees and that we can offer further financial assistance to help mitigate some of the impact these changes will have on our colleagues."


Pictured: As CEO, John Perkins is based at La Villiaze, with more than 500 colleagues. 

Specsavers said that some staff are currently working in roles different to their usual ones.

The firm said, more than 40% of support office staff based at the Guernsey head office have been asked to 'stay on and work their usual hours to support the organisation at this time, although some of their activity may differ according to current priorities'.

Pictured top: Specsavers' headquarters at La Villiaze in Guernsey. 


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Posted by Heather Scott on
I do hope that this is not how the possible 5% of your staff are finding this out!
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