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How closure of stores affects employees

Published: Monday 24th September 2018


This year has been a stressful year for many big companies. Many have fallen into administration causing retail outlets to be closed down. A timeline of the stores which have closed along with the number of jobs axed is shown below…

  • (February 2018) Toys R Us closes – 2000 employees are made redundant
  • (April, May 2018) 300 Prezzo outlets close – 500 jobs were axed
  • (June 2018) 355 stores due to close as Pound World enters administration – 5,100 jobs at risk
  • (June 2018) UK’s biggest electronics retailer Maplin closes 200 stores – 2,300 employees are made redundant
  • (August 2018) Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley saved House of Fraser for £90million. However, he is now shutting three outlets in Edinburgh (Frasers), Hull and Swindon. Some jobs were lost, but 3,500 were saved.
  • (August 2018) 60 Homebase stores were closed – 2000 jobs axed
  • (June 2019) Mothercare is due to close 60 shops – with 900 jobs at risk now from, 800 previously stated

High street chains blame rising cost in National Living Wage and business rates.  As well as an increasing trend for online shopping being a concern.

When a company falls into administration, they search for buyers – these are often private investors, investment banks, or other retailers. Many retailers fail to find help, for example, Maplin who struggled to find a buyer for a month. Others prove to be more successful – like House of Fraser bagging Sports Direct boss, Mike Ashley as the buyer for £90m.

Stressed female outdoors with one hand on headHow do employees feel after losing their job?

Apart from the financial implications, job loss can mean a significant loss of identity, and an individual’s self-confidence becoming eroded.

According to the Telegraph’s store closure tracker, which tracks closures from major retailers – 20,609 jobs were at risk. Its an extremely distressing time for employees especially for those who have been serving the company for a lengthy time. Losing a job is an experience that can leave the employee feeling bitter, demoralised, and depressed.

According to psychologists the most common reaction to job loss is physical shock accompanied by some of the classic symptoms associated with grief – disbelief, denial, anger, feeling stunned, becoming withdrawn, loss of confidence, and a feeling of ‘why me?’

This is particularly true when an individual had no warning or sense that they would lose their job.

Many individuals result in crying openly, becoming withdrawn, and undergoing mood swings ‘up one day and down the next’. Some have reported pretending nothing has happened, even to the extent of concealing it from partner/spouse/key family member.

Male outside arms out as a sense of relief

On the other hand, some individuals take being made redundant as an opportunity, pushing them onto something bigger and better, such as a radical change of career or starting their own business.


If you have been made redundant recently or are on a job hunt, search through our Zoek website. We have over 100,000 live jobs available. Good Luck!

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