Marks & Spencer is investing £57m to increase pay for shopfloor staff – its biggest ever investment in store pay, Retail Week can reveal.

Marks & Spencer store April 2021

A full-time M&S customer assistant will now earn nearly £150 a month more compared with the same time last year

The retailer’s in-store customer assistants and team support managers will see their pay increase by up to 9% per hour, compared with this time last year.

According to a staff briefing seen by Retail Week, as of April 1, 2023, customer assistants based outside the M25 will see their pay rise to £10.90 per hour, an increase of 90p compared with last year, while those based in London will see an 80p increase to £12.05.

Team support managers’ pay will rise 8% to £12.20 per hour, while those based in London will rise 6.4% to £13.35 – the equivalent of 90p and 80p increases on last year, respectively.

A full-time M&S customer assistant will now earn nearly £150 a month more compared with the same time last year.  

The latest rise puts M&S store staff above the national minimum wage, either in line with or above the real living wage, and follows its £46.5m investment in store pay in 2022 through two separate pay rises. Across the past two years, frontline pay at the retailer has increased by more than 20%. 

In a statement to staff, an M&S spokesperson said: “We want everyone who works here to feel valued and fairly rewarded for the job they do. We know pay is front of everyone’s minds, as we all continue to experience rising costs of living and a squeeze on household income.”

“Thanks to the dedication and hard work from our colleagues, we’ve delivered a strong sales performance over the last year, which has enabled us to make a significant investment into pay for our colleagues in stores, whilst maintaining our investment in our strong benefits package and balancing this with the rising costs we face as a business.”

The maintained benefits package includes an uncapped discount across M&S branded food, clothing and home products, which it says is ’sector leading’, a 24/7 virtual GP service, free eye tests, Check4Cancer risk assessments and the opportunity to participate in a share scheme. 

M&S chief executive Stuart Machin, who confirmed the rise, told Retail Week:Whether you’re running a home or a business, everyone is trying to balance the reality of rising costs.

“Of course, we all hope inflation subsides, and there are some positive signs that it is doing so, but we need to help colleagues in the here and now. That’s why we are investing so significantly in our hourly rates of pay and why we are supporting colleagues with a continued commitment to our wide-ranging package of industry-leading benefits.”