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Learn to lead and see what it takes to manage one of our multi-million-pound stores.

About the role

This role gives you the hands-on experience to become a Store manager. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can also choose to complete a Level 6 (degree equivalent) apprenticeship.

What you'll be doing
You’ll be close to customers and colleagues, learning our routines and processes that make sure our stores run efficiently. You’ll be hands-on, working across all the departments, understanding each role, and learning from the best. You'll see how our managers adapt to the unpredictable challenges that come up every day whilst keeping service and standards high.

Six months after starting the programme, you’ll have the chance to complete a Level 6 apprenticeship. We appreciate that further study is only for some; that’s why it’s optional. At this point, you’ll also be ready to take on your first Team Manager appointment.

You’ll rotate through our different departments, including Food, Clothing and Home, learning everything there is to know to become a Deputy/Store Manager.

And it doesn’t stop there; we will continue to support you through the next stage of your career, which could be taking on bigger stores and working elsewhere in the business to develop your skills further.
What you'll need
If you choose to study the apprenticeship, you will need good functional literacy and numeracy skills (A*-C/9-4 in GCSE English and Maths or equivalent). If you can demonstrate good literacy and numeracy skills but cannot provide evidence of a suitable qualification, you must complete Level 2 Functional Skills qualifications alongside the apprenticeship. You also need to have been a resident in the United Kingdom for at least three years before the start of the programme or have pre-settled or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme.
What we look for
To succeed here, you’ll need to be a team player who tells it as it is, works well with people and gets closer to customers. You’ll want responsibility; you will be committed to working hard and getting the job done. It means being fast on your feet at solving problems and calm under pressure.
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Your team

Pic of Employee      Estelle
Pic of Employee      JJ

Originally, my end goal for the programme was to become a Team Manager, but thanks to all the hard work I’ve put in and the support of my managers, I’m proud to say that I will have achieved that by early next month. Now I need a new goal – I think I want to be a Deputy Store Manager by the end of January next year!

Estelle (She / Her) | School Leaver Read full story

I knew I loved the energy of retail before I joined, but people arrive with no experience at all and M&S has nurtured that within myself and others. The pace is fast, the challenges keep coming and the development path is clear: everything that happens is helping to shape you as a manager. It is an amazing way to build a career and I do recommend it to friends, all the time.

JJ (She / Her) | Graduate Read full story
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Example career path

You’ll build a career as unique as you based on your skills and interests, but here is a common path that many colleagues in Retail make their own.

- Team Manager
- Deputy Manager
- Store Manager
- Regional Manager

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Learning & support

Your development is our priority. We’ll give you a structured programme including mentoring, on-the-job training, and opportunities to solve real challenges that will help you build a long-term career at M&S. And, if we believe you can reach your potential faster, we will give you the tools and opportunities to do it. But the person who is really going to make this happen is you. With our support, we want you to own and drive your development.


How to apply

We’ll provide reasonable adjustments during the interview process. Just tell us what you need, and we’ll do everything we can to accommodate you.

Application form

Your first step will be to complete our online application form and tell us more about who you are and why you want to work with us. 

You can only apply to one graduate or school leaver programme during this recruitment cycle that starts in October 2023.

Online assessment

We’ll invite you to take part in an online assessment, where you can find out more about M&S whilst we find out more about you. 

Assessment stage

If your online assessment is successful, you’ll be invited to an assessment centre alongside your peers. The recruitment process for store-based roles will also include an opportunity to attend your final interview in one of our stores.

Retail Leaders Programme


We are not currently recruiting for this Programme. Sign up to our Talent Pool to be notified or future application dates.

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