Sainsbury’s will create 150 new digital and technology jobs in Manchester over the next 18 months as it moves to sharpen its digital expertise ahead of a potential acquisition of Argos and a push into big data.
The roles will span what the company calls “agile coaches, software developers and software development managers in addition to DevOps engineers”. They will work alongside Sainsbury’s 900-strong digital and technology team on a range of projects that are designed to make the lives of the retailer’s 25 million customers and 161,000 colleagues easier. These include the Sainsbury’s site as well as its apps and core business systems.
"Our vision is for Sainsbury’s to have a world-class digital and technology function to ensure that we can deliver great services for our customers whenever and wherever they want to shop with us,” said Jon Rudoe, digital and technology director at Sainsbury’s.
“This announcement demonstrates our commitment to that goal and to attracting the best talent in this ever developing sector. As Manchester is the UK’s second largest technology hub, it’s a natural step for us to recruit here.”
The recruitment drive aims to fuel Sainsbury’s bid to “reinvent itself as a digital retail leader”, which it first announced in 2012. It’s why the business is keen to acquire Argos, which last year revealed its mobile sales had smashed pass £1bn. And its why the business plans to launch more personalised services this year that are powered by the customer data it sits on.
The new Digital and Technology Team will be based at Sainsbury’s Store Support Centre in The Arndale Centre, Manchester.
The launch raises question marks over the future of the 480 roles it planned to create last year to operate its in-house team in London and other parts of the country. Sainsbury’s gave it a similar remit to the team it is building in Manchester, including the creation of in-store Wi-Fi systems to drive sales.