Monday, April 26, 2010

Zim supermarket chain to retrench 1000 workers

24 April 2010 - TM Hyper, one of Zimbabwe's leading supermarket brands says it will retrench at least 1050 workers across the country and merge some branches and departments in a move aimed at streamlining operations and trimming the staggering workforce.

An internal memo written by TM managing director Bisset Chimhini and circulated to management on April 10 revealed the company's plans to trim its 2 774-strong staff to a manageable 1 720, a move which will affect all branches nationwide.

“After going through the staff levels that were presented to me by the human sources manager, I have recommended reductions in all branches. All general managers are to justify case by case if they cannotoperate with such reductions,’’ the memo reads in part.

Chimhini said they will close down three branches in Chitungwiza, Nkulumane Complex in Bulawayo and Highlands in Harare at the end of April due to the high cost of rentals but retrain and re-deploy all permanent staff within the remaining brainches.

Branches in Victoria Falls, Hwange and kariba will be targetted for departmental mergers. “General managers from the different regions must choose the best section managers to manage the remaining departments after merging some of them."

Managers whose sections would have been merged will have to choose to get a salary reduction and be reduced to a shelf packer or a till operator. Those managers who choose the retrenchment option will be given packages to be discussed only between the company and the
affected persons.

Chimhini said the company was also cutting down on butchery and perishable operations because of electricity problems , and as such, managers from department will run their sections from home.

Workers who spoke to Moroka Media in Bulawayo said they weres surprised that management has not come out openly on whether they are retrenching or not.

"The news has caused a lot of anxiety and restlessness in the workforce, people want to know what those targetted for retrenchment will get as compensation. We are very disappointed that some people are discussing our fate, yet we are the only ones who are not involved," said one worker who preferred to remain anonymous.

TM is not the only one to retrench this year, but wil be first to retrench more than 1000 workers after Dunlop Zimbabwe, which is in the process of off-loading 102 workers and wholesaler R Chitrin and Company, which retrenched 20 staffers last month.

Moroka Media 2010

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