The John Lewis Partnership has hired its first customer insight director to increase understanding of shopper behavior across John Lewis and Waitrose.

Paul de Laat will begin his role as partnership customer insight director on January 2. He will report directly to chairman Charlie Mayfield.

De Laat joins the retailer from Lloyds Banking where he was customer value management director and he has previously held similar roles at Thomas Cook, O2 and Vodafone.

He will be responsible for developing greater understanding of shopper behavior, supporting the divisional strategy and marketing teams.

Mayfield said: “Customer insight is an increasingly sophisticated area and a central part of modern retailing.

“Paul’s appointment to this newly-created role demonstrates our commitment to understand every aspect of our customers’ shopping behaviour, across both John Lewis and Waitrose, so that we can enhance the service we offer to customers.”

De Laat added: “By turning customer data into actionable knowledge, we can enhance our relevance to customers and increase value both for our customers and for Waitrose and John Lewis.”