Marks and Spencer Expands Flexible Working For Retail Staff

British retail consortium, Marks & Spencer, have just released an updated flexible working policy, which provides more choices and options for its store staff. 

Marks and Spencer has identified the need to attract the best talent, and have designed a new way of working, titled Worklife, which focuses on an employees work-life balance.

Launching in January 2023, M&S will allow its 3,000 retail staff additional flexible working options, such as working a four-day compressed week, spreading their hours over five days, or a nine-day compressed fortnight. To drive additional inclusivity, part-time managers will also be able to access their own pro-rated version of the compressed ways of working on offer. 

The retail giant initially tested this across 100 stores, with 75% of retail managers stating that compressed hours had a positive impact on their family life. Alongside their new approach, M&S have also implemented a new internal tool to help retail and support centre staff with job sharing. Their new platform, Job Share Finder, enabled staff to upload a biography and connect with potential matches. 

According to the employer, the ‘Job Share Finder’ emerged from its International Women’s Day ‘Ideathon’ in March, and was inspired by those returning mothers who wanted more flexibility. 

Sarah Findlater, group HR director at Marks and Spencer, said: “We want M&S to be a great place to work and shop and that means having engaged colleagues with a good work-life balance. We’ve listened to colleagues and are determined to create a cultural shift to flexible working across our stores. Those retail managers taking part in our compressed hours trial agree it has been a game changer by giving them more choice and autonomy. “We’re also always keen to put colleague ideas into action like our new Job Share Finder and are determined to keep exploring ideas that transform the way we work at M&S.” 

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