M&S increases staff pay for second time this year amid cost-of-living concerns

Marks & Spencer staff are to receive a second pay rise this year – and some will get an M&S voucher on top.

The store has announced a pay rise for more than 40,000 of its staff, including hundreds across the West Midlands.

It marks the second salary increase since January as the retailer responds to cost-of-living concerns.

The retail giant will also grant a £250 M&S voucher to 4,500 employees at pre-management levels in its stores and support centres.

The firm's minimum hourly wage will be bumped up to £10.20 from October 1, having already been increased to £10 from £9.50 in April and bringing it above the national and real living wage.

The support package will cost the business around £15 million, M&S said on Wednesday.

Graham Bennett, chair of M&S's national business involvement group, said "Cost of living is the most talked about issue amongst our colleagues and we very much welcome the package of support from M&S.

"We are pleased our leadership team has listened to colleagues and responded, and we will continue to work closely with them as we head into what is the busiest time of year for retail."

M&S is the latest firm to increase wages in an effort to attract and retain staff.

Sainsbury’s announced last week it was giving its lowest-paid shop workers a second pay rise in a year as well as extra discounts and free food during their shifts in a £25m package.

The retailer’s 127,000 hourly paid workers will get a 25p an hour increase to £10.25, with the rate for staff in London stores increasing from £11.05 to £11.30.

Sainsbury’s unprecedented autumn pay rise will add £20m to the company’s wage bill and combined with the five per cent pay increase in spring will cost a total of £150m.

The investment in pay, as well as the hundreds of millions of pounds being poured into limiting food price rises in its stores, will weigh on profits this year.

“Every day I am hearing from colleagues who are really feeling the pressures of the rising cost of living,” said Simon Roberts, chief executive of Sainsbury’s.

“That’s why we are doing everything we can to help our colleagues as they face rising bills and living costs this autumn. This is the first time we have given two pay rises in the same year.”

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