The 83,000 partners who work for the John Lewis Partnership have, for the first time in the business' history, been formally recognised in the company's name as both John Lewis and Waitrose have added '& Partners' to their names.
The changed has been designed to highlight the Partnership business model and culture which sets the retail giant apart from competitors. This week new facades were unveiled on the face of John Lewis' flagship store on Oxford Street, London, which has undergone a multimillion pound refurbishment, as well as its White City store and Waitrose outlets in Edgware Rd and Clerkenwell.
The changes have also been rolled out across both websites, all carrier bags, uniforms, trolleys, marketing activity, internal shop signs and selected lorries and vans. The full identity change to all 348 Waitrose and 50 John Lewis shop facades and the combined fleet of 3,500 lorries and vans is being phased over a number of years to tie in with refurbishment plans.
In addition to investing in their identities the John Lewis Partnership said in June that it would continue to invest in both businesses at a rate of £400m-£500m per year, to enable the two retail businesses to differentiate themselves from other retailers by innovating in products, customer service and services.
Both retailers are investing in their partners to enhance their skills and product knowledge in order to deliver exceptional experiences. These include the creation of Customer Service Ambassadors who provide warm and personalised customer service front of store, the creation of healthy eating specialists, training partners to offer a concierge style service and equipping personal stylists with the skills to deliver daily fashion talks; as well as investing in technology to improve customer service.
John Lewis & Partners managing director Paula Nickolds said; “Our Partnership business model and the inherent strength of our Partners really sets us apart. That’s why the change to our visual identity this week puts Partners back at the heart of everything we do. This move not only reflects the business we have become but more importantly, the business we want to be.”
Waitrose & Partners managing director Rob Collins added: “This moment is far more significant than simply adding words and changing the design. It symbolises something bigger, expressing what’s different about our business and signalling our intent to make that difference count for even more: committed, knowledgeable Partners who care about the business they own, sharing their love of food and offering great customer service.”
The launch of the new identity is being supported by the first ever joint John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners national marketing campaign; the single biggest ever campaign for both brands outside of Christmas. It includes a new TV and cinema advert, which features children putting their heart into performing a school play to the sound of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody song and ends with the line ‘For us, it’s personal’.