Mothercare has spoken of plans to reduce the number of hours that store staff work in a move that will put 500 jobs at risk.
Following a period of declining sales and profits, the mother and baby specialist wants to reduce the hours of customer service advisors currently working 24 hours or more a week.
Employees who do not accept the new terms could be made redundant, putting 500 jobs at risk, according to The Times.
The firm does expect to employ about 200 new part-time sales assistants during peak trading hours in its designs to modernize and attract customers, achieve cost efficiencies and “become profitable again.”
“Mothercare is valued by its customers or high levels of service, expertise and advice,” said a Mothercare spokesperson.
“As an important part of its continued commitment to service, and in response to customer feedback, Mothercare is looking to increase the proportion of colleagues serving customers at our busiest times.
“As well as creating new jobs, this step will lead to changes in working practices for a number of our UK store colleagues and we are consulting with those affected.”
A Mothercare spokeswoman added that the firm did not intend to introduce zero-hour contracts.