Sainsbury’s is creating 22,000 Christmas jobs, with higher numbers of staff required than usual.
This represents 10,000 more roles compared to on average over the past five years, the retailer confirmed.
It is looking for store staff, delivery drivers and logistics workers as supermarket bosses have warned of a rocky Christmas amid a labour shortage.
Sainsbury’s is launching its recruitment drive four weeks earlier than last year as stores anticipate pent up demand for a social Christmas.
Roles include 14,500 new Sainsbury’s and Argos store jobs and 4,500 warehouse and logistics positions, alongside 180 additional staff at its contact centres.
It will also hire 3,000 online delivery drivers with a new payment incentive for Argos and grocery online drivers. Drivers will be able to earn up to an additional £500 for Christmas shifts.
Clo Moriarty, Sainsbury’s retail and digital director, said: “We’re going all out to help our customers celebrate and make sure they have a great Christmas this year.
“By recruiting 22,000 temporary Sainsbury’s and Argos colleagues on an attractive pay package, incentivising online drivers and offering additional hours to existing colleagues over the festive season, we will deliver what our customers want – great food and fantastic service.
“Christmas is a fun time to work in retail for anyone who enjoys helping customers and thrives on working in an inclusive team environment.”
Staff hired as part of the seasonal recruitment drive will be on fixed-term contacts of between three and 12 weeks, with staff working until January 8 next year.
Business minister Paul Scully said: “The Government is protecting, supporting and creating jobs across the UK through our plan for jobs and it’s great to see Sainsbury’s launching its biggest ever Christmas recruitment drive.
“These 22,000 jobs being created across the country mean more opportunities for workers and even better service for customers – enough to give Father Christmas some serious competition.”
The government has faced calls to intervene in the current shortage of HGV drivers and staff in other sectors including hospitality.
It has announced plans to grant 5,000 extra temporary visas to HGV drivers from overseas but bosses said this would not be enough, against a backdrop of a shortfall of up to 100,000 drivers.