John Lewis Graduate Scheme in the UK - Interview Tips and How To Get Hired

John Lewis Graduate Scheme Key Information


Partnership House, Carlisle Place, London, SW1P 1BX




Approximately 81,000 employees, turnover of £8.73 billion for the financial year ending January 31st, 2012.

Grad Salary

From £25,000.

Pros and Cons


Pleasant and friendly working environment.

High levels of teamwork and co-operation due to partnership structure of the business.

Diverse team of people as well as projects to get involved in.


Progression from entry-level management roles can be slow.

John Lewis Graduate Scheme Overview

All candidates for a John Lewis graduate placement must have achieved a 2:2 degree in any subject, along with a GCSE grade of C or above in Maths and English.  Candidates must also be fully flexible with regards location and hours of work during their first 18 months with the business.

Successful candidates undergo a six-week induction in a John Lewis branch, before taking up a Section Manager role.  The company will look to place you on two departments over a period of time, so you gain experience across different areas of the business.  John Lewis aim for all graduate placements to be at Department Manager level after 12-18 months inside the business.

John Lewis Graduate Scheme Interview Tips

Discuss the wider world. Every applicant has been to University, so look for work based competency examples to enhance both your application and conversation during assessment days and interviews.

Grasp the nettle! Remember that the business is looking for leaders, so you will need to confidently demonstrate excellent leadership qualities throughout the selection process.

John Lewis Overview

John Lewis prides themselves on the partnership structure of their business, meaning every employee truly has a stake in the future of their company, which empowers them to be more efficient in their work.

John Lewis, through its wide reaching network of department stores, provides customers with high quality clothing, household, and grocery products. John Lewis is a world famous brand for offering excellent products at great prices, and has been voted “Britain’s Favourite Retailer” on a number of occasions.

The business are committed to further expansion of their brand, with at least 10 additional stores planned for opening in the next three years.

John Lewis Locations

John Lewis has 36 stores throughout England, including in famous shopping locations such as Bluewater Shopping Centre, Brent Cross Shopping Centre, and Oxford Street.

John Lewis Future Salaries

John Lewis expects graduate candidates to reach Department Manager level within a maximum of 18 months upon joining the business. Progression to Store Management level then depends upon an individual’s ability and ambitions, although the most talented candidates can expect to reach this level in approximately three years.

Example salaries at John Lewis include;

Section Manager £28,000 - £40,000

Department Manager £35,000 - £50,000

Deputy Store Manager £45,000 - £60,000

General Store Manager £65,000 - £110,000