Marks & SpencerMarks & Spencer
A growing, international retail business like M&S can offer you virtually unlimited opportunities. So whether you want to pursue a career in Retail Management or specialise in one of the many Head Office disciplines that make our business tick, the perfect role is waiting for you here.
Our brand of perfection doesn’t just happen on its own. Everyone who works here has their part to play in making it happen. That’s where our fast-paced graduate schemes come in. These have been designed to give you an insight into what drives our business and prepare you for management.
If you see your future in store, our Retail Management scheme is the place to start. Then there are our key store support function schemes: HR, Supply Chain and Logistics, Marketing and Property. Or, if you’d prefer to create what goes in our stores, you might like to explore Design, Product Technology, Buying, Merchandising, Food Product Development or Food Buying.
Digital is not just a huge growth area for us; it’s fundamental to our business strategy. Last year, visits to M&S.com via mobile were up by some 39%. As our customers’ shopping habits continue to be influenced by advances in technology, the need to take the lead in this area is key. With this in mind, our Software Engineering and M&S Digital (commercial) schemes are seen as crucial to our future.
Each scheme offers a mix of experiences that span a range of roles within your chosen area. By the end of your training, you’ll be ready to take on a permanent, full-time role. In short, this will be the perfect start to your career with us.
Bring your perfect touch to M&S at mandsearlycareers.comApply: Marks & Spencer scheme
- Name: Michael
- Role: Food Buyer
- University: University of Reading
- Degree: Food Technology with Biological Science
Spending a year in the food industry as part of his undergraduate degree helped Michael decide he wanted a commercial focus in his career. For him, choosing M&S was the natural next step.
'I'd known for a long time I wanted to work in the food industry. My degree was in Food Technology with Biological Science, so I had a solid foundation to build on. But I needed to find an employer who could give me the breadth of exposure to make me the complete package. M&S stood out from the crowd for me, inasmuch as their scheme was geared towards helping me acquire the additional skills I needed to progress quickly.'
'What the business really excels at is identifying your strengths and weaknesses. The graduate scheme has been constructed in a way to enhance the former and work intensively on the latter. It really does give you a broader understanding of the food industry. The focus extends beyond food to take in all of the other disciplines that you need to master in order to become a more well-rounded professional. So if you have a business-related degree, you'll get to learn about the food side. My need was to acquire the commercial skills and M&S was the ideal place to do so.'
'It's very much a hands-on, learn-by-doing kind of role. You're allowed to make mistakes too. The business recognises that this is how you develop and you'll be given constructive feedback so you get the positive from the negative. Working alongside the rest of the team of food buyers, technologist and product developers is another big plus. You get to see the equation from their side, so you can factor all this into your decision making process - which, incidentally, you're expected to do from an early stage.'
'Obviously, M&S is a massive operation; it's an iconic retail brand. We are the benchmark for the industry. This means a lot will be expected of you. But, as long as you're prepared to drive your career and make the most of the available opportunities, you'll get all the support you need to succeed. Buying has so many touchpoints with the rest of the business. This means you can have a great deal of influence. But with that influence comes responsibility. To live up to these you need to understand the bigger picture. You have to have everything from sound analytical skills and a solid grasp of the commercial to how we work with supply chain and our external suppliers.'
'The real key to getting things right, however, rests on your ability to understand our relationship with our customers. With this in mind, you'll start out with a few months on the retail frontline. As a Food Buyer, what you do has a massive impact in store. If you step into the customers shoes and see how they see our products; if you really get a handle on what their needs are, you can take this back into your role. This will really help you create the ahead-of-the-curve, innovative products they want and, also, keep our brand fresh and relevant.'
'M&S is all about its customers, so we have to be all about the product. We need to understand what customers want. That's how we make the perfect, tailor-made products they love.'