Friday 20 September 2019

Leading Irish supermarket confirms it will pay all staff the living wage

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Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

A leading Irish supermarket has confirmed it will pay all staff the so-called 'living-wage' of €11.70 an hour.

German supermarket retailer Aldi has the new minimum rate of pay for its Irish staff.

The rate of pay matches the living wage rate recommended by the Living Wage Technical Group, and makes Aldi the first supermarket in Ireland to commit to paying staff the Living Wage Technical Group’s €11.70 rate.

The new rate comes into effect on February 1 2018 and represents a 20c increase on the entry-level pay for Aldi store assistants, stock assistants and caretakers.

"Our store colleagues are the cornerstone of our business," Giles Hurley, Group MD Aldi Ireland, said.

"Without their hard work and dedication day in, day out, we would be unable to provide customers with the lowest grocery prices in Ireland. We are committed to offering the best pay and benefits in the industry and will continue to do so".

A spokesperson for Tesco Ireland said it pays staff in Irish stores an average of €14.31 an hour. In addition Tesco said that it 2017 was the fifth year in a row that it had given staff a 2pc pay rise.

"We are the only retailer to offer additional benefits including; a pension scheme, a privilege card giving a 10pc discount on purchases, bonuses, discounted health insurance and a save as you earn scheme allowing share purchase," Tesco Ireland said.

The spokesperson went on to confirm that all Tesco Ireland employees were receiving more than the minimum wage.

Today's announcement follows a period of significant sustained sales growth and store expansion for Aldi.

The supermarket chain, which has now captured 11.2pc of Ireland's grocery market, is currently engaged in a three year €100m new store opening programme, while also investing €60m in revamping and refurbishing its existing stores nationwide, introducing its “Project Fresh” design and layout.

Earlier this week it was announced that Aldi enjoyed record sales during the Christmas period, racking up £10bn (€11bn) in sales in its Irish and UK markets.

Head of HR for Lidl, Maeve McCleane told that the store committed to the living wage of €11.50 in 2015 and that they also pledged to consistently review this rate "to ensure our team are among the best paid in the industry".

"We are delighted to confirm that all entry level employees in stores and warehouses will receive the recommended increase to €11.70 per hour, from March 1 2018, in line with our new financial year.

"We recognise and appreciate the role our team play in growing our business year on year and accordingly offer a market leading benefits package to employees at all levels.

"This includes access to join a contributory pension plan, maternity and paternity salary top up and access to an Employee Assistance Programme, amongst others."

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