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M&S is today (Thu 25 Feb) launching its first official alumni network to bring together the huge support and passion that exists within its vast global community of former colleagues. 

The new network has been named M&S Family – because that is how colleagues past and present – have described their experience of M&S. Through its new digital network the retailer wants to enable everyone who has worked for M&S to stay part of the family and have the chance to continue their contribution to the business. 

Katie Bickerstaffe, Chief Strategy & Transformation Director and Sponsor of the M&S Family Alumni Network said: 

“It’s our people - past and present - that make M&S special. When you work here, you join a big, diverse family and become part of a business and brand that’s stood the test of time. That connection never leaves you, even when you move on. We have a huge community of former colleagues who remain our most passionate advocates and constructive critics. But to date, we’ve barely scratched the surface when it comes to tapping into the enthusiasm and opportunity our fantastic extended M&S family can provide – be that supporting our recruitment pipeline, mentoring, backing our community initiatives or providing candid feedback on our products and services. With the launch of our new network we want everyone to feel they can remain part of the family and we have an enormous opportunity to build an incredible community that supports each other and can helps us transform M&S.”

Working with leading provider Enterprise Alumni1, the new M&S Family platform enables former colleagues to connect with each other and M&S. Alumni members will be kept to date with the latest M&S news, have access to live job opportunities, and find out how they can get involved with M&S initiatives. 

Alongside this, M&S is building a series of exclusive events and content for its alumni, with the help of its M&S Family Founder Panelmade up of the leaders of existing smaller alumni groups on social media and some of the retailers longest serving store managers. The programme will include:

  • Exclusive M&S Family events: The first is Q&A with Mel Smith, Ocado Retail CEO and former M&S Strategy Director next month. 
  • Alumni interviews:  From entrepreneurial ventures to tales of inspiration, each month will spotlight a different alumnus. The launch interview is with Ian Walker, co-founder of Laundry Republic – a sustainable, clean tech dry cleaning business – who had his first job at M&S Guildford. 
  • Blasts from the past content: Established in 1884, M&S is able to draw from its heritage and the amazing assets within its  Company Archive. Members will also be encouraged to share their own stories, pictures and memories with each other. 

Clare Ball, Chair of M&S Baker Street Facebook Group and member of the M&S Family Founder Panel said: 

“M&S is in my DNA. I joined in 1985 and spent 13 fantastic years at the Baker Street office, meeting my husband in the process. More than 30 years of marriage later, we look back on our time at M&S very fondly and now have a son that works at our local Foodhall. They say that although you might leave M&S, M&S doesn’t ever leave you - and that is so true. The Alumni Network will be the perfect way to stay informed and reminisce about the old times, so I’m really excited for the launch.

To help build a brilliant community of alumni, M&S will be running launch activity across its social channels – including LinkedIn and its store community Facebook pages – using the concept: ‘M&S Family – Then, Now, Always’.

Alumni can sign up and stay part of the M&S Family at

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For further information, please contact:  

Notes to Editors:

  • EnterpriseAlumni is the market leader in alumni management software, powering the alumni networks of the world’s leading companies for community and competitive advantage. They help large companies to leverage this vast untapped pool of people as a source of recruitment and referrals, business development, brand building, as a marketing army and for cost cutting. And for alumni, their intelligent network offers opportunity, community and learning. 
  • Their customers range from tech giants such as GoogleX and LinkedIn to Fortune 100 companies such as Citi and Coca Cola to retailers such as Marks & Spencer, Harrods and CVS.
  • EnterpriseAlumni are proud to be the only scaling software company in the world with gender balanced ownership.