As companies suffer the full brunt of COVID-19 and the UK Government offers a wage relief package, Tesco have announced that they will be hiring 20,000 temporary employees for the next 3 months.
The move by Tesco will help ease the financial burden for many workers who have found themselves unemployed after COVID-19 forced companies to shut down.
With many unsure of how they will be able to keep pay rent or afford groceries as a business continue to shut down and lay off workers, the announcement by Tesco offers much-needed hope to some.
Tesco will be prioritising those individuals that have been laid off due to company closures caused by the coronavirus. The 20,000 recruitment drive will be taking place across their 800 stores countrywide.
This comes right after the government announced that it would be offering businesses a wage relief package, offering to cover 80% of salaries for employees earning up to £2,500. This would only be offered to employees who took in individuals that had been laid off
The government introduced this to encourage businesses to stop laying off workers have most facilities shut down as a result of the restriction imposed due to COVID-19.
Companies have been forced to lay off employees as many businesses have been forced to close their doors. The incentive by the government is understood to apply to companies that have already laid-off workers due to the pandemic.
They will also have to reinstate the previously laid-off employees but instead of having them come back to work, they can be granted a leave of absence.
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunar went on to comfort the public saying:
“I know that people are worried about losing their jobs, about not being able to pay the rent or mortgage, about not having enough set by for food and bills… to all those at home right now, anxious about the days ahead, I say this: you will not face this alone,”
As much as businesses welcomed the wage package assistance, they also warned the government that another challenge they were facing would be the issue of rentals as landlords were still expecting their payments unless legislature was put into place to intervene
“Banks and landlords need to do more to help us bridge the gap towards this generous government support. Damage is being done now, so we need help now.” said UK Hospitality chief executive Kate Nicholls
The government has also introduced other measures to assist businesses through these trying times by delaying VAT payments by businesses until the end of June, offering interest-free cash grants to smaller businesses as well as offering almost £1 billion in assistance towards rentals increasing Universal credit and housing benefits.
The wage package of 80% for salaries up £2,500 would reduce the forecasted unemployment figures from 8%, down to 6% according to Capital Economics. The 20,000 jobs also created by Tesco will also go a long way in helping as well.