Why Marks & Spencer is unlocking the power of Alumni

by Community Admin in In The News   |    Last Edited: 03rd April 2021

Few would argue the benefits that come from an engaged workforce, particularly in retail, which is fundamentally a people business and the UK’s biggest private-sector employer.

To win in a competitive market, you need brilliant people giving outstanding customer service – every day, in every location. The pandemic has brought this to the fore, as teams across the country have dug deep, gone the extra mile and – in our case – delivered some of our highest ever service scores despite the tough circumstances. We’re very lucky to have the team we have.

Family values and engagement are deep-rooted in Marks & Spencer’s heritage. Our founders knew the value of fostering a culture where colleagues are valued, involved and given a voice.

“As any marketeer will tell you, word of mouth endorsement is worth so much more than any paid communication”

But until now that has ended abruptly when a colleague leaves us. We want to change this. Our alumni are part of our extended family and have a significant contribution to make.

Research shows the commercial reward of investing in these life-long relationships. One of the clearest and most highly relevant to retail is the benefit of the boomerang hire. 

Returning employees are immediately more productive – in short, they ‘get it’ – and what’s more, their retention rates are 44% higher over three years. Returner hires coupled with alumni recommendations create an efficient pipeline and businesses with evolved programmes report 10% to 15% of annual hires coming via alumni. 

Read the full article: RetailWeek