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We employ around 85,000 people worldwide, over 90% of which are based in the UK. Our people bring our values to life. Their talent, commitment to our customers and pride in M&S are key to our long-term growth. 

Our People Principles

We are committed to driving a sustainable business that is both commercially successful and socially and environmentally responsible. This includes providing our employees in the UK and overseas with a safe and healthy working environment and having an organisational culture which promotes diversity, inclusivity, personal development and respect. We know it’s our people who make M&S successful. We want people to enjoy coming to work and for the workplace to be free from discrimination, harassment and victimisation. 

Employing people in different countries means responding to different cultural and social norms and different employment law and commercial considerations. However, regardless of where they work or the job they do, we want everyone employed by Marks & Spencer to be treated with dignity and respect and have pride in our brand.

Our People Principles underpin our vision of being a responsible employer and establish minimum standards with respect to recruitment, reward, employee relations, employment engagement and how employees can communicate their views. These apply across all our operations for our direct employees and Joint Venture partnerships. Similar standards are in place in our franchised operations. 

Communications with employees

We are committed to direct employee engagement and participation through democratically elected Business Involvement Groups and Works Councils as we believe that the people who work for us:

  • have valuable first-hand knowledge of our business operation
  • have the greatest vested interest in our commercial success; and
  • know most about what issues really matter to workplace colleagues
In addition to communications throughout the year we also have an annual Your Say survey as well as confidential (on request) helplines and a process of annual performance reviews. 

This is the successful approach we have taken since the company was founded in 1884.

M&S Code of Ethics and Behaviours

Our Code of Ethics and Behaviours is re-communicated to employees every year and we ask that all senior members of management confirm their acceptance. Download Code of Ethics and Behaviours PDF

Anti-bribery policy

Diversity and equality

Health & Safety policy

Mental wellbeing


Our business outside of the UK and Republic of Ireland accounts for around 6% of our turnover. This is made up of a combination of franchise and part-owned operations. We aims to recruit a local workforce representative of the community with ideally no more than 20% expatriate management.

We work to an International policy framework that includes compliance with ‘law of the land’ plus additional M&S requirements, including:

  • Provision of medical insurance
  • Employee representation
  • Equal opportunities
  • Non-discrimination
  • Corporate ethics and
  • Pay and working conditions
  • All our sourcing offices, subsidiaries and joint ventures provide employee handbooks. We also provide a reward framework detailing other entitlements such as employee discount.


The M&S Pension Scheme has been a signatory of a United Nations- backed initiative called the  ‘Principles for Responsible Investment’ (PRI): since 2010.

Being a signatory commits the scheme to working in collaboration with other investors on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues in line with six principles:

  1. We will incorporate ESG issues into investment analysis and decision-making processes.
  2. We will be active owners and incorporate ESG issues into our ownership policies and practices.
  3. We will seek appropriate disclosure on ESG issues by the entities in which we invest.
  4. We will promote acceptance and implementation of the Principles within the investment industry.
  5. We will work together to enhance our effectiveness in implementing the Principles.
  6. We will each report on our activities and progress towards implementing the Principles.
The Scheme maintains a policy in respect of ESG issues and encourages the entities the Scheme is invested in to improve their awareness of ESG issues by expecting its appointed investment managers to have integrated ESG factors as part of their investment analysis and decision-making process. The Trustee monitors the practices of its managers to understand how they exercise these duties on behalf of the Scheme and to aid them in so doing, the Trustee seeks advice from external experts.

Further details of the Scheme's approach to ESG and Sustainability can be found at