J.C. Penney will cut thousands of jobs Wednesday from all 1,107 stores owned nationwide, and in addition, it will force employees to take undesirable schedules.
The company is currently undergoing a complete renovation, led by Chief Executive Officer Ron Johnson, former retail chief of Apple Inc. Johnson intends to replace sales and clearance events with "every day low" prices.
The staff deduction will be the first initiative to lower prices. Jobs that require re-tagging merchandise and displaying "sale" signs will be eliminated.
"As planned, we held over some seasonal holiday hires to help us with the re-ticketing of merchandise," a JCPenney spokeswoman told The New York Post.
"As this project comes to a close over the next several weeks, the temporary employment of these seasonal hires will come to an end."
However, the company may also have plans to cut workers beyond the temporary hires. A source told the Post that workers that cannot take on the new, difficult schedules are being asked to quit.
"Many employees were given an option … to either leave the company or be moved to a different shift," the source reported, suggesting the shifts were hard to accommodate.
Other sources have indicated that the shift has been initiated by two of the company's largest shareholders – hedge-fund tycoon Bill Ackman and property magnate Steve Roth. The new plans for reducing company expenses could also affect companies the work with J.C. Penney, including advertisers and exclusive designers for the company.
During November, the company reported a loss of $143 million. Changes have been planned surrounding the boost of holiday sales, in an attempt to keep up for the forward momentum.
Although holiday sales were not as good as projected, the company CEO will continue to enforce changes stating in November that his goal was to "re-imagine" the department by encouraging workers to "think differently and work creatively."
The J.C Penney Company was developed in 1913, starting first as individual stores and eventually expanding into shopping malls and the concept became more popular.