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500 jobs created by M&S e-commerce drive

10 May 2013 - 11:46 by Graham Miller

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Five hundred new positions will be created at a major e-commerce distribution centre based in the Midlands, thanks to additional investment from Marks & Spencer, according to Forbes.

This is on top of the 1,000 jobs that are being generated by the opening of the retailer's major 200 million facility, which it hopes will allow it to keep up with the demand for safe shopping online.

The distribution centre is likely to be open in full by the autumn and it is seen as a key part of the M&S e-commerce strategy going forwards, because at the moment, its market share in the online space is relatively limited, given its reputation for high street dominance.

In total, it is thought that M&S will be spending around 1 billion in order to enhance its position online and it is looking to make sure that it can fulfil customers' orders through a better logistic infrastructure.

The facility itself is going to be very modern and efficient in spite of the fact that it is built on the foundations of a decommissioned power plant. For example, it is set to take advantage of a solar panel solution which will be the largest of its kind in the whole of Europe.

With all these jobs being created, M&S is eventually hoping to save money each year by making its operations more effective and taking advantage of safe shopping online, to appeal to customers who are used to buying goods from the web, rather than bricks and mortar stores.

M&S definitely faces a tough challenge if it wants to eventually compete with the likes of Sainsburys, Tesco and Asda in the online supermarket space, but it has shown a willingness to spend the cash necessary to make this possible.