25 August, 2016

Life in the fast lane

Our HR Shared Services (HRSS) Contact Centre in Salford Quays, Greater Manchester is a hive of activity. The centre provides support to our retail colleagues and line managers who have an issue with any of our systems, need a pay query resolved or want to know how to access our HR processes. That’s potentially 60,000 colleagues who can contact the centre at any given time!

Lisa has been with M&S for five years and is currently an Operations Manager in HRSS. So what does that involve? “I currently look after four Team Leaders and around 30 Advisors and I’m constantly poring over call stats to make sure we have the resources to answer around 1,100 calls a day. On top of that, I’m looking for ways to improve our service to colleagues and working on various project activities.”

A current task is to administer pay reviews for retail colleagues, which inevitably generates a huge range of queries, as well as providing support to colleagues who are booking their holidays for 2017.

And that’s not all. “It may be the height of summer, but the centre is already supporting our stores to recruit their temporary Customer Assistants for Christmas – obviously our peak time of the year,” Lisa explains. “We can take up to 13,000 extra staff in the festive period and the centre will field the recruitment calls, help candidates through the application process and also deal with pay and leaver queries as the season gets going.”

Just as our stores are renowned for giving shoppers outstanding service, the HRSS Contact Centre prides itself on providing internal customers with great service. And with Lisa at the helm, that happens. “Every job I‘ve had has been customer focused. I first worked in the hotel industry before joining a debt solutions company. I left as Customer Service Manager after eight years to join the HR Shared Service Centre for a big supermarket, where I began to understand the demands of the retail environment.”

Now she’s at M&S, Lisa really enjoys the changing priorities in the business and finding solutions to issues to keep us where we are in retailing today. “There’s a great feeling working as a team to meet our targets ad look after our customers – and the Christmas discount is a wonderful incentive to do just that.”

So, having worked in retail customer service before, what’s so special about M&S? “I really believe that as colleagues we make a difference; M&S really is a great place to work.”

Inside M&S