Marks & Spencer
3.4 of 5 137 reviews
www.marksandspencer.com London, United Kingdom 5000+ Employees

Marks & Spencer Reviews

Updated Jul 9, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

3.4 137 reviews

                             

70% Approve of the CEO

Marks & Spencer CEO Marc J. (M. J.) Bolland

Marc J. (M. J.) Bolland

(63 ratings)

73% of employees recommend this company to a friend
137 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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Review Highlights

Pros:
  • "Additionally their staff discount is quite good as you can use it even on sale items"
    in 15 reviews
  • "20% discount card (however this took until nearly the end of my contract to come through)"
    in 10 reviews
Cons:
  • "However, I believe this system has changed since I last worked for M&S"
    in 5 reviews
  • "Needs to improve work life balance for employees"
    in 3 reviews
  • Show more review highlights

Reviews

     

    Customer Service Assistant

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsGood benefits, incentives and vacation time

    ConsSnobbery amongst older staff members

    Advice to Senior ManagementGet a bit more real

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    Challenging but really rewarding

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsM&S have a reputation for having great people and it's true that so many staff are hugely committed and passionate about our brand.
    There's no limit to how for your career can progress as long as you have the drive and ambitions and are prepared to put yourself out there. At times you may have to wait to progress, but at other times people progress quickly as they are prepared to access the opportunities.
    Although benefits have been seen to reduce over the years, M&S is still a great place to work with a strong ethic for work life balance. Long hours and hard work are put in by choice rather than pressure.
    The Business strategy has it's sights on the long term and I agree with much of it. It takes a while to turn such a huge company round, but feel we're heading in the right direction, particularly with our food Division.

    ConsChallenging cost cutting sometimes impacts the staff in stores more than the Head Office environment. Pay and benefits may look less attractive than other retailers who don't necessarily offer the same environment or values that M&S does.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Work was physically demanding and pay is very low

    Sales Associate (Former Employee)
    Singapore (Singapore)

    ProsTime passes fast, Training comprehensive

    Cons- Constant restocking of goods onto shelves
    - Strict rules on break time

    Advice to Senior Management- Increase pay or hire more people to reduce work load

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Great company but please listen too staff!

    Warehouse Operative (Current Employee)
    Castle Donington, England (UK)

    ProsThe possibility of promotion is there if you have a good attitude too work, the team i work with in the warehouse are fantastic, my team leader pushed to help us progress our career and to build a lifetime bond with our co workers. 20% discount is really good and something that not many employers do these days.

    ConsThe management for our D.C (distribution centre) is like a boys club. The management is made up of people who worked at previous places together i do not believe you should be a team leader because your friend is a manager it is highly unfair. if a shift manager is in your corner and your a manager you can treat people as badly as you would like which is wrong, after a particular manager has had complaints from an entire department, he has not had as much as a warning, the clothing is dated and i know they should start to look at what competitors are selling or we will consistently fall behind in this field.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThere are several staff members who are showing their dedication to M & S and who have the skills to have a promotion, take these people rather than friends as this will help us as a business to progress with our transition to an online retailer, and will make our efficiency and customer promise much more reachable.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    All about the stores

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    Pros20% staff discount for yourself plus 1 partner
    Inner London HQ has a great culture & staff are well catered for

    ConsDo what we say or get out management style
    Very little work life balance
    Outer London HQ is remote & does not share level of facilities with Inner London

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

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    Not a great company if you are a temp

    Customer Service Assistant (Former Employee)
    London, England (UK)

    ProsYou have employment, and what turned out to be surprisingly enjoyable interaction with other customer service personnel and the customers themselves.

    The company insist you attend a 3 day training session in store, which is quite helpful, but is mainly videos played and a lower tier manager reading from a book,

    For temps there is the carrot of possible permanent work although this did not happen for me for various reasons (see below)

    ConsAs a temp you only get a limited number of hours work,
    Despite assurances to the contrary, new workers are thrown in at the deep end after induction, leading to inevitable problems using the tills etc, causing delay and frustration for the worker and the customer.

    My first temporary role was at the Uxbridge store and I did not get a permanent role, I feel that the management there simply did not like me and frankly the feeling was mutual.

    I also had numerous placements at the Harrow store and found this much more rewarding, although I still did not get a permanent role partly because of the hours I was available, but mainly because the store introduced automated checkouts, and were not taking on new staff anyway.

    Management is variable, I have worked at some stores where the managers are really approachable and show an interest in the lower tier of workers. Others have too high an opinion of themselves and have favourites, Unsurprisingly this is truer of the lower tier graduate trainees than the more experienced managers. Some seem to think that David Brent is a template rather than an ironic figure,

    The company themselves seem to be in denial about the time and therefore money wasted on cosmetic upgrades and customer unfriendly strategies such as charging for bags, and automated checkout.
    The range of clothing offered appears to be mainly for 50-70 year olds or children, and there is no concession to the younger adult market. The food is very good quality but is overpriced, and there is too much competition these days. I no longer seek employment at this company as I believe it will be closed down in the near future.

    Advice to Senior ManagementSeek alternative work, I cannot see M&S lasting more than another 10 years the way it is going, because it does not sufficiently identify the needs of the customer, including insufficient staffing and unpopular merchandise.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Great company to work for! Even as a sales assistant, I really felt part of he bigger picture!

    Sales Assistant (Former Employee)

    ProsGreat group of people, better than average pay, opportunity to easily expand role

    ConsThe experience you have really depends on your manager as colleagues in other teams had different views in terms of their experience

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    Outsourcing done wrong, crippling company.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsBiscuits in canteen, other than that none.

    ConsOverly outsourced environment.
    Outsourcing done in Macho fashion, all suppliers contracts are cut to the bone, result is it looks good when upwards managing but make day to day running a nightmare as all suppliers are trying to eek more money out by raising unnecessary PO's etc and charging for every last little thing. Slowing down projects and ultimately costing more money.
    High turnover of Outsourced staff, due to VISA issues a team never stays a team longer than about 6 months.
    Lots of polictics

    Advice to Senior ManagementNext round of contract negotiation focus on KPI's that drive quality not focus on cost reduction at all costs and you will see a difference in the bottom line.
    Reduce politics

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Bad work/life balance, qualified Beauty professionals not taken seriously

    Former Beauty Advisor (Former Employee)

    ProsGreat sales floor collegues
    Discount Card
    Yearly Beauty Conferance to meet brand reps and see upcoming products.

    Cons-Terrible work/life balance for full timers... unbalanced shifts e.g. a working week can consist of 11am-7pm, next day 6am-2pm, next two days 2pm-10pm.
    - Some senior staff encourage you to break Working Time Directive (legally having at least 11hrs between shifts), by ''not clocking in''the following morning! Iv been asked to come back to work with only 7hours break between shifts! (which i refused)
    -In store management dont take qualified Beauty Consultants seriously... dont provide a new set of makeup brushes for new staff members... meaning they have to dig around in drawers to find odd bits of old brushes from ex employees! Need the correct brushes to provide great makeovers! And still after months of chasing it up with them... their answer is still that they ''dont know''.
    -Only recieve 30mins break in and 8hour day, while management take multiple sit down breaks whenever the mood strikes them to eat or drink... yet they will question sales staff who nip up for a quick glass of water when dehydrated, or for going to the toilet (two basic human needs/rights!)

    Advice to Senior Management-In store management... value your beauty consultants, they trained for years to qualify and know what theyre talking about.... and need the right tools for the job if you want them to provide a high standard of makeover! Dont just shrug off their requests because you cant be bothered.
    - Set an example to staff, take the same breaks as them... they are run off their feet on the sales floor all day and management dont like it if they go for a glass of water... yet management will come into work and have a sit down breakfast after only 1hours work for example.
    -Stop requesting ridiculous shifts for staff... its why a lot of people go off sick or leave because theyre run down and have no work/life balance

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    NO PROGRESSION UNLESS YOUR FACE FITS

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)
    Dundee, Scotland (UK)

    ProsDISCOUNT CAN BE USED WITH SALE GOODS

    ConsAwful around abscence policy...but if your face fits you can get away with anything...otherwiswe you get penalised for everything ...so beware !!

    Advice to Senior ManagementStop penalising people that you dont like,some of you have had these roles for years and need retrained as technology baffles you .. and have a fair and consistent approach with all staff not just your clique..really bad people skills

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Marks & Spencer reviews and ratings — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Marks & Spencer CEO Marc J. (M. J.) Bolland. All 137 reviews posted anonymously by Marks & Spencer employees.