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There have been numerous reports in the Irish press about how Superquinn, the Dublin-based food retailer, has announced plans for 300 voluntary redundancies, mainly in managerial and administrative staff across its 19 stores.

In an interview yesterday with MNB, deputy chairman Eamonn Quinn said that the reductions had been in the works for more than two years, as the company dealt with the reality of its distribution network becoming more centralized, making it less necessary for individual department managers in each of the company's stores.

Quinn said that a new job level has been created within the company that actually creates managers with responsibility for several departments -- one person with oversight responsibility for produce and meat, for example, or another for dairy and deli. This cuts down on the bureaucracy as well as creating greater flexibility in terms of personnel. The changes, Quinn said, are being instituted on a shop-by-shop basis, with management structures being created within the needs of individual stores.

Despite reports that the changes had been necessitated by increased competition from the likes of Aldi, Quinn said that they had been in the works for some time, and only just got publicity because the unions had recently voted to support the changes at Superquinn.
KC's View:
Quinn is an extremely savvy guy, and he told us that until these changes, the Superquinn shops had pretty much had the same management structure for the past 40 years…so a change was due. "Customers won’t see a thing," he said, and we believe him -- because Superquinn would never do anything to affect its hard-won and treasured relationship with shoppers and global reputation for superb customer service.