Midcounties staff move to new HQ

Midcounties Co-operative expects to complete the phased move of around 170 administrative and support services staff to its new headquarters near Leamington Spa by the end of the...

The society will continue to maintain a presence at Co-operative House, Oxford, by providing meeting rooms and other facilities for members, though some office space will be offered for rental to other companies or organisations.

However, the future of the Hatherton Road premises in Walsall is unclear.

A society spokesman commented: “A future use for the Walsall premises is being discussed, but no decisions have been made. Midcounties owns both Co-operative House and Hatherton Road. They remain valuable assets of the society and we are under no pressure to dispose of them.”

Chief Executive Ben Reid says that relocating to Warwick Technology Park near the motorway network and combining central functions into one office at the heart of the society’s trading area makes sound sense.

All staff involved have been given the opportunity to move with the society, with transport and relocation expenses offered where appropriate. Staff were informed of the proposed move over a year ago and there has been  an extensive formal consultation process since then.

Said Mr Reid: “Since Midcounties was formed in 2005, from the merger of the former Oxford, Swindon & Gloucester Co-op and West Midlands Co-op, we have been running administration and support services out of two centres.

“That has worked well, but it makes sound business sense to consolidate into one place as the society grows. 

“The building at Leamington has been extended and developed to our specification with environmental considerations to the fore, something we know our members are particularly keen on.”

Added Mr Reid: “Our new offices will be as ‘green’ as they can be and a single central location will mean fewer car journeys. We are determined to make the transition as smooth as possible. 

“For example we will operate free coach and train travel from Oxford and most of the journey time will be included as part of colleagues’ paid working hours. We have also extended our package of relocation expenses.”

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