Retail round-up on May 24, 2016: John Lewis introduces staff probation period and M&S's supply chain heads could leave next year.

John Lewis puts new starters on three months probation for the first time

John Lewis is cutting its staff perks in order to offset the cost of the compulsory national living wage, which mandates every UK employer to pay £7.20 per hour to all those aged 25 and over from this April.

The department store chain, for the first time in its history, has introduced a ‘meaningful’ probation period for three months for new recruits.

Novices at both John Lewis stores and Waitrose supermarkets will be required to complete a three-month trial before they can qualify as a 'partner' and become eligible for an annual bonus.

Junior staff who fail the test are either given another month to prove themselves or are ousted.

The probation period can be extended for a month for junior roles and three months for senior positions if there are concerns.

M&S sourcing bosses could step down in 2017

Marks & Spencer boss Steve Rowe is looking into whether to renew the contracts of its sourcing chiefs, Mark and Neal Lindsey, as part of his ongoing shake-up.

The contracts of the two brothers, who have led an overhaul of the retailer’s supply chain, expire next spring and it is ‘highly likely’ that they would quit during the course of 2017, Sky News has reported.

However, the talks are in the early stages.