The retailer’s existing digital platforms would be maintained and developed by 180 experts at Sainsbury’s digital labs in London and 300 experts at a new technology hub in Coventry, it announced today (April 1).
Sainsbury, which last month announced it would create 100 new ‘click and collect’ stores, would use the new team to build better online platforms and upgrade its digital infrastructure, it said.
It would also help boost core business IT systems, to serve customers faster and improve its supply chains, it said.
‘Business is changing’
Mike Coupe, Sainsbury’s ceo, said: “The shape of our business is changing and digital and technology is a core part of our future growth.
“Ultimately, these changes are good news for customers – the technology hub in Coventry will keep our systems running smoothly and experts in our digital labs in London will be developing new ways of digital shopping to give customers the best access to our products.”
Following the meteoric rise of the deep discounters Aldi and Lidl in the past 12 months, the big four have quickly strengthened their online capabilities to gain ground, as Aldi and Lidl don’t have ecommerce.
“The shape of our business is changing and digital and technology is a core part of our future growth."
Recent data from the Centre for Retail Research predicted online retail sales would reach £52.25bn this year, which is a 16.2% increase on 2014 levels.
Online grocery shopping would also accelerate the decline of traditional superstores and hypermarkets, Nick Miller, head of fast moving consumer goods at supply chain consultancy Crimson & Co said.
“[However], the growth in online shopping will be offset by the decline in consumers visiting the grocery ‘big box’ … we could reach a point when superstores and hypermarkets are surplus to requirements,” Miller added.
New shopping app
Sainsbury had already trialled a new mobile shopping app that allowed customers to create shopping lists at home and remembered their favourite items, said the company’s director of digital and technology Jon Rudoe.
The app also gave customers a map of their nearest store to help them find their favourite items.
It enabled consumers to scan products on their phones in store, allowing them to go directly to a ‘pack as you go’ lane to avoid queuing and paying at the till. They could also use the app to arrange deliveries for home.
Jon Rudoe, director of digital and technology at Sainsbury, said: “We’re now firmly on the map as a career destination for digital and technology specialists.
“We’re structuring and equipping entrepreneurial teams to improve the digital experience and develop products that will help make our customers’ lives easier.”
Meanwhile, for thousands of jobs in food and drink manufacturing, visit FoodManJobs