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Aldi raises UK store staff pay as living costs soar

Aldi has raised pay rates for UK store staff for the second time this year, in a sign of the growing labor market pressures supermarkets are facing as the cost of living soars.

The promotion will pay store staff outside London £10.50 an hour from September, a 3.9% increase from the £10.10 rate set in January. This pay represented a 5.7 per cent increase on the previous £9.55 an hour, and meant Aldi workers would see a basic pay jump of almost 10 per cent from a year ago.

Inside the M25, Aldi workers will earn £11.95 an hour. Both rates are ahead of the real living wage.

The increase in wages in the grocery sector reflects both increasing economic pressure on workers who were crowned as national heroes during the first months of the Covid epidemic and an acute shortage of labor.

Usdaw, the main union for hourly paid shop workers, is pushing for a minimum wage of £12 an hour to reflect the rising cost of living, while according to the latest ONS employment figures, there were around 100,000 unfilled retail vacancies in the second quarter of the year.

UK companies in other sectors, including banks and airlines, have also come under increasing pressure from staff to increase pay as food and energy bills have risen sharply.

Aldi said the increases, which will apply to 26,000 workers, represent a £43m investment in improving pay during 2022. Rival Asda increased pay rates in April and then brought forward the planned 2023 rise to July this year.

Most supermarkets now pay around £10 an hour and Aldi’s move will put further pressure on those still below that level, such as the Co-op, Iceland and Waitrose.

Wm Morrison was the first to pay over £10 and was due to increase this to £10.20 in October.

As retailers try to control overall wage bills while keeping hourly rates competitive, they also battle it out over benefits and perks. Aldi said it was the only supermarket still paying workers during their contract breaks, a benefit it said was worth £830 a year to the average worker.

However, it does not offer a staff discount – unlike traditional supermarkets such as Tesco which offer staff a 10 per cent discount, rising to 15 per cent on 12 paid weekends each year. Asda and Waitrose still pay bonuses to staff each year based on the company’s financial performance, although these are not guaranteed.

Aldi raises UK store staff pay as living costs soar Source link Aldi raises UK store staff pay as living costs soar

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