Ocado denies drivers' wages allegations

Ocado Retail has denied allegations that some of its drivers are being paid less than £5 an hour.

At the weekend, the Observer published a report that alleged some Ocado Zoom drivers were being paid well below the minimum wage.

Zoom is Ocado’s one-hour delivery service currently operating in West London.

The publication said it had seen payslips from an Ocado driver that show they earned an estimated £5 an hour in the first week of August and £2.91 an hour in the last week of July.

The Sunday newspaper added that drivers had claimed their income significantly dropped after the online retailer took on new delivery partner Ryde.

But Ocado has strongly denied the claims, reassuring its customers that all Ocado.com deliveries are made by Ocado employees that earn significantly more than the minimum wage and above the living wage.

According to digital retailer, 99 per cent of its drivers are employed by the group, while its Zoom service partners with third-party delivery companies for some of its deliveries.

It said that Ryde, an Ocado Zoom partner, aims to pay 20 per cent above the market average, well ahead of both minimum and the London living wage.

A spokesperson for Ocado Retail said: “For Zoom, Ocado's immediacy service currently operating in West London, a small proportion of deliveries are made by third-party delivery partners. Drivers who accept and fulfil orders for these partners receive above the living wage on a pro rata basis.”

They added: “It would be unacceptable to Ocado for any drivers to be paid below the living wage. We are committed to working closely with suppliers to ensure our model delivers great outcomes for everyone involved, including everyone delivering orders to Zoom customers.”

Ryde has also strongly refuted the claims.

“We aim to pay 20 per cent above the market average, well ahead of both minimum wage and the London living wage and over 90 per cent of Ryde drivers earn above the London living wage. Driver pay does vary depending on the acceptance and fulfilment of jobs and the average driver pay for Ryde users is currently £12 p/h,” said a spokesperson for Ryde. “We are concerned by recent media reports and are investigating the specific instances, although from an initial assessment of driver data we strongly refute that drivers are being paid below minimum wage for their work with Ryde.”

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