Waterstones restructures making seven redundant

Waterstones has restructured its mid-management in order to improve the store’s operational efficiency, making seven people redundant.

In an email communication to staff, Waterstones managing director James Daunt said the previous structure using Divisional Managers (DMs) and Regional Managers (RMs) had been replaced with  a “cluster model”, where shops report into a smaller number of regional managers.

As a result, the people who have been made redundant are: Oliver Emson, Christine Gonsalves, Emily Hamer, Stuart Havis, David Rowntree, Chris Townsend and Will Williams.

Waterstones head of books Rik McShane has been promoted to the position of retail director, and field operations, central operations and the commercial department will all report into him.

Daunt said that the intention behind the reshuffle was to “fully align the core parts of our business". He added: “We are making tangible progress to transform our business, and it remains essential that we build upon this success. The physical improvements through refits will continue but we need also to improve further both our book-selling ability and our operational efficiency.

"The reorganisation is an important part of the strategy to achieve this and nothing remains more important than your continued positive engagement. As ever, I am very grateful for this.”

Daunt said that the reorganisation was “far reaching” and would raise questions. He promised to furnish staff with more details about the rationale of the changes this week.
He added that he was “grateful” for the “long service” of staff who left the company last week and added: “we wish them every success for the future".