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Marks & Spencer Online Tests, Assessment Centre, Hiring Process & Interviews Preparation – 2024

Solving Aptitude Tests

What Is Marks & Spencer?

Started in 1884 by Michael Marks and Thomas Spencer as a Penny Bazaar in Leeds, Marks and Spencer (M&S) has grown into a multinational retailer. They sell a variety of high-quality items, from clothing and housewares to speciality food. With over 700 stores in the UK and stores spanning 57 countries, Marks and Spencer is one of the leading UK based retailers. They offer career opportunities in a number of different areas. You can apply for positions in distribution, in-store, with the support office, or see which international opportunities may be available to you. They offer graduate placements, internships, and apprenticeships. Benefits of working for Marks and Spencer include:

  • Minimum 28 days paid holiday leave
  • Pension plan
  • Sharebuy
  • Sharesave
  • Life assurance
  • Colleague discount
  • Bonus schemes
  • Discounts
  • Salary sacrifice
  • Charity volunteer day
  • Discounted healthcare products

Marks and Spencer prides itself on providing a diverse and welcoming workplace and helping employees learn and develop, so they can reach their full potential. They place emphasis on their core values of quality, value, service, innovation, and trust, and they use these through the hiring process as a way to identify the best possible employees.


What Is the Marks and Spencer Hiring Process?

The Application

The Marks and Spencer hiring process starts with an online application for all positions.

The website is designed so that you can search for openings by career area. Openings for positions at specific stores are listed by location. If the location is not listed, there are no positions available. Some positions, such as the management scheme for school leavers, have an application window, after which time no more applications will be accepted.


What Are Marks and Spencer Online Tests?

All applicants to Marks and Spencer will be required to take a series of psychometric tests. These tests are designed for the company to determine the candidate’s skills for the role they are applying for, and how well they align with company values. These tests will vary based on the position you are interested in. These tests are provided mainly by SHL.

  • Knowledge-based tests
    Applicants for positions as customer-assistants in the beauty and bakery departments are given tests to assess their knowledge of the subject.
  • Personality Test
    Job-seekers applying for customer service or in-store management positions are required to take the personality assessment. It is used to determine if your personality fits the company’s core values, and how well you suit the position you have applied for.
  • Situational Judgment Test
    Applicants for most positions will be required to take this test. The situational judgment test (SJT) uses a multiple-choice format to help determine how you will respond in a number of work-related scenarios. The test is not timed, and the questions are designed to see if your responses reflect what Marks and Spencer wants from its employees.
  • Numerical Reasoning Test
    Some positions, Graduate scheme, business placement, operations, and engineering, will require a numerical screening test. This test will measure your ability to extract information from charts and graphs. You will be given a series of numerical questions and will have to calculate the answers. You are allowed to use a calculator. It is a multiple-choice format and will be timed. You will have 18 questions to answer in 25 minutes.
  • Verbal Reasoning Test
    Applicants seeking graduate scheme, and business placement positions will be given a verbal reasoning test. The verbal reasoning test is designed to determine the applicant’s ability to understand written information. You will be presented with a series of short paragraphs and will answer questions about them. The test format is “true”, “false, or “can’t say” and is timed. You have 19 minutes to complete 30 questions.


Marks and Spencer Assessment Centres

  • Assessments Centres for Customer Assistants
    Applicants for positions in-store as customer assistants who make it past the pre-employment screening will be asked to attend an assessment centre. If you have applied for a position in the beauty or bakery departments, you will have to take another knowledge-based test. All candidates for customer assistant will be required to do a customer service based role-play. If this satisfactory you will be given an interview with a line manager.
  • Assessment Centres for Support Office, Graduate & Management Positions
    Higher level and graduate positions will attend an assessment centre. They will be removing people who they do not find suitable as the assessment centre progresses. The assessment centre will consist of role-plays, a group activity, and an individual presentation. The role-plays will focus on simulating a situation that might arise in whichever position you have applied for. The group activity will involve a challenging situation that must be worked out together, you will be given about an hour to complete this exercise. For the individual presentation, you will be given 90 minutes to go over a packet of materials, such as sales numbers and secret shops, and must plan a 15-minute presentation on how you would proceed based on this information. The recruitment team will be observing how well people work together, problem-solving abilities, and leadership skills. They will be watching to see adaptability and commercial knowledge. The applicants who make it all the way through the assessment centre will be interviewed that day.


Marks and Spencer Interviews

Interviews with Marks and Spencer are designed to be the final gauge of applicant ability. This is their opportunity to get to know you, and your achievements. They will be judging your communication skills, your business sense, and your leadership abilities, and competence. Applicants will be measured by how well they represent the Marks and Spencer values. Interviews can last as long as an hour and a half.


How to Prepare for Marks & Spencer’s Online Assessments?

To prepare yourself for the online assessments, familiarize yourself with the company and it’s core values and competencies. Online assessment tests are generally tailored to the corporation that is giving them, and their preferred responses will be based on the values the company wants to see demonstrated. The personality and situational judgment tests heavily rely on determining if your answers reflect the type of personality that will blend well with the Marks and Spencer corporate culture. For the numerical and verbal tests, take time to practise beforehand. Take the tests in a quiet place free of distractions. Although some of the tests are timed, take the tests at a time when you won’t feel rushed. Practise reading comprehension, and review your math skills. Carefully read the test instructions and the wording of the questions to ensure that you’re giving the best answers. Focus on accuracy rather than beating the time. These tests are not only measuring your skills, they are also testing how well you perform under pressure.


How to Prepare for Marks & Spencer’s Assessment Centre?

Going into the assessment centrecan feel overwhelming, proper preparation will make it easier to face going in, and making it to the end. Practise role-playing so you feel comfortable, think of challenges you might face in the job you applied for and role-play the scenario so it feels more natural. For the group work, don’t be afraid to contribute, it’s an important part of the group challenge. Listen to everyone’s ideas, and give appropriate feedback. Practice giving mock presentations prior to the assessment. No matter how any of the group activities go, be sure to maintain your professionalism. This will stand out above all else in the minds of management and will help you get to the very end of the assessment day.


How to Prepare for Marks & Spencer Interviews?

If you make it to the interviews, you have demonstrated that you may be a good fit for Marks and Spencer. It is important to prepare properly to cement that impression with management. Practise mock interviews so you can approach the real interview with confidence. to answers for the interview. Be prepared for open-ended questions. These are commonly used to get a better read on the applicant and to understand their background. This is a good opportunity for you to explain how your past experience has made you a perfect fit for the position. Go in with an answer for why you want to work there, this is a common question and the interviewer is looking for a reason beyond that you need a job. Some other common questions are:

  • Why do you think you are a good fit for Marks and Spencer?
  • What is a difficult decision you had to make?
  • How can you get a team to perform well together?
  • What is the most important part of customer service?

Don’t hesitate to ask your own questions. This can start a dialogue, and help you focus your answers. Research the Marks and Spencer company. You want to be well versed on their brand image, and their core values so you can demonstrate these in your answers during the interview. A firm knowledge of the direction they are headed, and their aspirations will show them you fit into their corporate culture, and help you nail the interview.