The Kent Website since 1999
Welcome to the Yourcounty Waitrose jobs and careers page. We've been highlighting jobs with the John Lewis Partnership (JLP) for a decade or more. The content on this page has developed to reflect user and researcher feedback. In this spirit we welcome your comments if you have experience of working for Waitrose or their recruitment process. Follow this link for more employers in Kent.
Waitrose Limited is the supermarket division of the John Lewis Partnership, its place in the spectrum of UK retailers is towards the quality end, 'upmarket' frequently being an adjective applied to its activities. If you want some quick facts to help your application or prepare you for interview you might like to know that at the time of writing there were 310 Waitrose branches of which 41 were 'convenience' shops. 101 stores have their own cafes. The total number of partners stands at around 65,000. Waitrose is expanding and the business is on target to open 40 new branches in 2014.
The enterprise started life in 1904 as a local food store in Acton called Waite, Rose & Taylor. By 1908 the business had been renamed Waitrose, the business now having just two partners, Messrs Waite and Rose. The business prospered, particularly between the wars and when it became part of the John Lewis Partnership in 1937 it already had over 150 employees working in ten stores.
The growth of the business continued and it's first 'supermarket' was opened in 1955. More stores were developed by over the following five decades, most in the South and South East of England. Today there are 290 stores delivering a market share of around 4.3% making it the sixth largest in the UK, making it the 6th largest grocery retailer in the UK with a turnover of around £4b.
The supermarket has ambitions to double its turnover by 2016, as part of this strategy the 'Essentials' brand has been created, bringing the traditional levels of quality together with very competitive prices. There is also a price match scheme where 'Essentials' and certain branded goods are price matched with other popular supermarkets.
The John Lewis Partnership (JLP) runs Waitrose stores. It may be of particular interest to know that the business is a trust where all employees have a share and reap the rewards of the success of the business. Workers are known as 'partners' and help shape the direction of the organisation.
The JLP is a highly regarded employer, the published benefits of working for them included (at the time of writing):
Waitrose offers great opportunities to enter the fast-moving retail sector through a flexible training scheme. Successful candidates may get a position as a department manager within two years. The scheme typically recruits 30 graduates per annum through two separate intakes. Visit the graduate recruitment pages for more information.
Competition is really tough for Waitrose vacancies, for example the Stratford store received more than 1400 applications in just two days, the retailer received over 1,500 application for just 100 jobs in Brighton recently. The moral of this fact is that you'll need to make an outstanding application to have a good chance of being sucessful.
At the time of writing there were thirteen branches in Kent although the JLP is looking to increase the number of supermarkets across the UK. You'll find shops at Repton Park in Ashford, there is a new store in St George's Place in Canterbury (on the former site of the bowling alley). There are three supermarkets in the Bromley area as well as one in Crowborough and in Hythe. The only Waitrose in Thanet can be found in Queen Street, Ramsgate. The remaining stores in Kent can be found at the Orchard Shopping Centre (Dartford), the Aylesford Shopping Centre, in Church Road Paddock Wood, as well as Sevenoaks, Tenterden and Tonbridge
If you visit the Waitrose job website you'll find all of their current vacancies advertised. at the time of our last visit their were over 120 opportunities including in-store, logistic and head office jobs including (details correct at the time of writing):
We aim to ensure our content is relevant and accurate. But if you find that any links are broken or content out of date let us know. Please see our disclaimer.
"You have an excellent page but I think you need to emphasise the JLP partnership bonus. Each year profits from within the partnership profits are shared pro-rata amongst all employees. It can be as much as 20% on top of the annual salary. When comparing wages and benefits including the bonus makes JLP jobs amongst the best paid on a like for like basis compared to other supermarkets. Keep up the good work. Helena"
"I never realised just how great the partnership model was until I started working for the company, many applications come from family members who know how it works. Toms"
"I applied four times before I even got an interview despite having all the right qualifications and experience. I'd like to know what criteria they use, it's only shop work after all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BB"
"I've worked for three UK supermarket chains in the last decade the working environment at Waitrose is great and the training second to none, think the basic pay could be a bit better."
Waitrose is part of the JLP (John Lewis Partnership)so employees can expect the same benefits enjoyed by staff at John Lewis. Waitrose is currently expanding across the South East, which means more jobs and more opportunities of progression.
Retail jobs in Kent
The retail sector now dominates employment opportunities in most major towns. We publish a retail employment feature outlining most of the UK's major high street employers including; Tesco, Sainsbury, Asda, Morrisons, B&Q, Boots and many more.
If you've worked hard to get yourself a degree is it time to question if you are getting the most from your qualification? Many large employers have specific recruitment campaigns aimed at attracting graduate entry recruits. Take a look at our guide and see what's going on.